Sexual Reproduction

Most of the pygmy Drosera flower prolifically, some produce abundant seed, while many do not produce any seed under greenhouse conditions. It might be that those that have not set seed need to be cross-pollinated.

Viability of pygmy Drosera seed is quite variable. Perhaps the seeds need some sort of pre-treatment before they will germinate. But neither we nor other growers have pursued this area to date. To our knowledge, no one has produced any hybrids in this group of Drosera. The primary obstacle to artificial cross-pollination and/or hybridizing the pygmy group is their small flower size. It is virtually impossible to control pollination by ordinary methods in cultivation.

Sow seed on the soil, dust with a fungicide, keep the soil damp and the humidity high. Light should be strong and temperatures should range from about 70-80°F (21-27°C). It is best to allow the seedlings to grow one season before transplanting.

Asexual Reproduction

  1. Leaf cuttings: Propagation by leaf cuttings is not always successful, but works sporadically. Success is enhanced if the whole leaf including the base of the petiole is utilized. Place the removed leaves top side (side with the tentacles) up on damp medium. Keep them in strong light with high humidity and within a temperature range of 70-80°F (21-27°C). Within 4-8 weeks plantlets will be visible. When the plantlets have developed roots they can be transplanted.
  2. Gemmae formation: Propagating pygmy Drosera by inducing gemmae formation (gemmification) is a far more satisfactory means rather than growing plants from seed or leaves. All species but D. glanduligera, (which though included in the pygmy group does not produce gemmae and is an annual) may be successfully propagated by gemmae. D. glanduligera produces seed each year which germinates readily.

Gemmification is induced by lowering the growing temperature to between 40-65°F (4-18°C) while the plants are growing in moist soil. The photoperiod should be reduced to about 8 hours. Usually within 2 weeks a swelling in the central area of the rosette where the gemmae are forming can be detected. As the swelling develops and enlarges, individual gemmae will appear as separate structures.

Tweezers may be used to remove the gemmae, but this is tedious work. A simpler method is to drain the pot for a few hours then up-end it over a piece of paper and brush the area where the gemmae are located with a brush or toothpick. The gemmae will fall on the paper. Gemmae should be removed, even if your intention is not propagation. If not removed, they start to grow on and around the mother plant; overcrowding will result in some dying due to lack of growing space. The dead ones become good targets for fungus such as Botrytis which will quickly spread throughout the plants in the pot. The removed gemmae should be planted immediately upon a suitable media.

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