Learning Moment: Building a Bog Container

I really have an interest in sarracenia pitcher plants, but live in an area that gets very hot and dry in the summer. Not the best for building a bog, so I went with a container instead. I used a 24 inch diameter small pond form that is about 8 inches deep. I drilled holes in the side of the container about half way down to drain water and keep the top few inches damp, but not saturated.

Next I created a reservoir from a terra cotta pot. I drilled holes in the side of the pot for water to drain. I put the terra cotta pot in the center of the plastic pond form and filled several inches of the the plastic pond form with pea stones. I put a hose in the empty reservoir and ran it until water drained out of the side holes of the plastic pond form. I then topped the pea stones with a half sand, half sphagnum mix and put a solar pump bubbler into the reservoir. Most carnivorous plants cannot take any fertilizer, so it’s important that your substrate does not have fertilizer in it.

I planted water loving plants like sarracenia (venosa, barba, velvet, farnhamii, maroon) a Venus fly trap, a spiral and a regular juncus, a flag iris, a Siberian iris and a dwarf papyrus.

Finished Product

I added moss around the plantings and covered the sides with pine straw to keep the direct sun off of it. This area gets morning sun and about an hour of late afternoon sun. I added an irrigation drip line to the setup to refresh the water in the bottom during dry spells. The reservoir serves to show water level so I can be assured that I have enough bog water to keep the plants healthy. About a month in, and I am seeing new growth. This was a fun project and I hope some of you give it a try.


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