Many varieties of carnivorous
plants eat bugs. Pitcher plants
set a pit trap with their sweet
nectar. Sundews offer a sweet treat that
traps unsuspecting flies. Venus flytraps
lure insects right into their leafy
jaws and suck the life out of them.
God made the original plant kinds on
day three of creation week as described
in Genesis 1:11–13.
But when they were originally created
in God’s perfect creation, these
plants didn’t eat other creatures, since
that would have involved death. Carnivorous
behavior must have risen in
plants and animals sometime after
God cursed the earth.
If you have ever tried to keep one
of these plants, you know they are
tricky to grow. This activity will help
you properly care for your little green
friend. You may not grow Venus fly
traps big enough to eat the neighbor’s
cat, but even small traps can be beautiful
- Venus flytrap
- 4-inch or larger
peat moss with
no fertilizers or
- Water (distilled,
- Gallon zipper bag
- Deep saucer or bowl
(latex, vinyl, rubber)
- Add about 3 cups of sphagnum peat moss and 3 cups of perlite
to the baggie. Seal and shake until evenly mixed.
- Add about 3 cups of water, seal, and knead gently until the
contents feel somewhat like cookie dough. (Add a bit more
water as needed.) You want the mixture to be thoroughly damp
but not sopping wet.
- Fill the new pot with the moistened soil mixture and use your
finger to poke a hole about two inches deep in the center.
- Carefully remove the potted plant from the package. Turn the
potted flytrap on its side and gently squeeze the sides of the
pot, rotating as you do so. This will loosen the soil from the pot.
You can tap it on your palm as well. Don’t worry if your flytrap
snaps shut in the process. It will reopen later.
- Pop out the entire ball of soil with the plant, then widen and
deepen the hole you’ve poked in the soil in the new pot so the
plant will easily drop in.
- Press the soil along the edges inward until the plant is snugly
- Add more soil until the pot is filled to the brim around the plant.
- Place the newly potted plant in a saucer or bowl and keep the
water level one-fourth to one-third of the way up the side of the
pot at all times. Keep the plant in an area with lots of sunlight.
- Because flytraps go through a dormant period during the winter
months, the plant should be brought into a garage or similar area
so it can “sleep.” Water it slightly every few weeks.
- Flytraps should be repotted every 2–3 years.
The plants that you buy
from a typical garden store
usually come packaged in
pots that are too small and
will overheat the plant.
Flytraps should be grown
only in sphagnum peat moss,
the soil in which they grow
naturally in the Carolinas.
This soil is acidic and low in
nitrogen, which is toxic to
Venus flytraps. Avoid using
brands with added fertilizers
when potting Venus flytraps
because these products
are enriched with toxic
It’s helpful to add perlite
to the sphagnum peat
moss. Perlite is made from
a porous volcanic glass. It
adds no nutrients to the soil
but holds water and helps
oxygen to penetrate the
sphagnum peat moss and
To help the plant flourish,
you can give it a new
home with lots of space,
nourishing soil, fresh air,
sunshine, and pure water.
Did You Know . . .
People have long
with these bug-eating
They were a
Darwin, the father
were beneficial to
Roger Patterson, affectionately known as
Mr. P, helps kids understand science from
a biblical perspective through experiments
and hands-on activities in his Answers TV
show Unlocking Science.
This article was taken from Answers magazine, July–September, 2021, 30–31.