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Nepenthes Breeding Program


Hi Growers, this is Domonick Gravine! I wanted to share our Nepenthes breeding program and give you an idea of what’s to come! We are working hard to selectively breed our Nepenthes for size, color and unusual features… Because, who doesn’t need more bizarre Nepenthes!

Have you ever seen a family and every single person in it was extremely attractive? What you’re seeing is the combination of genes playing together to bring out some of the best features from the parents. Ok, ok, who cares about human appearance….beauty is on the inside, but not when it comes to Nepenthes!

Collectors and plant growers around the globe are constantly looking for larger pitchers and more dramatic peristomes! Here at RedLeaf Exotics our Nepenthes breeding program concentrates on the most desirable traits for your collections! Species are special, but seed grown Nepenthes hybrids give you a chance to own something nobody else has and everybody wants!

nepenthes breeding program at Redleaf Exotics.
The parents of N. { x } x (mollis x veitchii). One of our newer creations, the parents have exceptional complimentary traits! The seedlings are growing quickly and already showing fuzzy little leaves.
nepenthes breeding program at Redleaf Exotics.

STRIPES, COLOR AND DRAMA! What’s not to love?

Let’s face it, nothing compares to walking in a Nepenthes greenhouse and setting your eyes on a huge peristome loaded with stripes! Without a question, Nepenthes veitchii is one of my favorite species! The greenhouse is loaded with all types of veitchii hybrids, from primary to some so complex it’s comical to recite the name. They’ve always been some of my favorite, producing fuzzy features and very large peristomes with stripes and a whole lot of eye satisfaction!

Nepenthes for sale
Nepenthes veitchii ‘Candy Dreams’, a prime breeder plant at Redleaf Exotics.

Some of our breeding plants have exceptional traits that we are combining to produce even more dramatic peristomes on easier to grow plants. You can see the two parents in the images and how they compliment each other. Because they both have such intense striping and large peristomes, I’m hoping to see these traits shine through on the offspring! The larger the peristome the better! I’m excited to see how they mature!

nepenthes breeding program at Redleaf Exotics.
N. (glandulifera x veitchii) x (spectabilis x veitchii)

Pictured above, N. (glandulifera x veitchii) x (spectabilis x veitchii) is another creation we have growing on. Although the parents have thinner peristomes, the double veitchii and striping should produce some pleasing results!

nepenthes breeding program at Redleaf Exotics.
N. x should produce large pitchers with a ton of stripes and rich color!


nepenthes breeding program at Redleaf Exotics.
N. {(ventricosa x sibuyanensis) x } x mirabilis var. globosa

We are also working on producing desirable traits on faster growing plants. I believe that breeding lowland Nepenthes into our intermediate/highland plants will allow us to produce stunning pitchers on strong plants with fast growth. You can see another one of our newer hybrids in the images below.

N. {(ventricosa x sibuyanensis) x } x mirabilis var. globosa was created back in January and it’s currently the fastest growing of all our seedlings. The first thing to note on this combination is the rich pitcher coloration, followed by the squat pitcher form. We expect deep reds on most of these plants with ease of growth. Because vent x sib is very dominant in it’s crosses, it shoudl come through in the lip. Our mirabilis hybrids have been rushing to grow up and we have a few more in the works. You can see the offspring below. They are all showing great color at a very small size! In addition, the foliage will be pretty colorful too:)

Nepenthes breeding program at Redleaf Exotics.
redleaf exotics

N. x (mirabilis x ampullaria ‘Black Miracle’) is another one of our complex x lowland hybrids. The male is dark and squat, therefore we we expect this to translate into some of the offspring as they mature. Secondly, the RB x V should add some very unique shape to the peristomes and striping. These and many more unique lowland crosses will be available in 2020. We can’t wait to share!

Redleaf Exotics Nepenthes breeding program.
N. x (mirabilis x ampullaria ‘Black Miracle’)


Ever since I was a little boy, Exotica Plants has inspired my passion for Nepenthes! Geoff and Andrea Mansell are the world leaders in Nepenthes hybridization and the amount of eye candy they have created this far is unbelievable! It’s doesn’t hurt that they have 13 hours of sunlight a day and can grow anything, but they really have an eye for mixing the best combinations! Over the years, I have watched their hybrids grow up and observe the traits and how certain features are so dominant in the offspring. Conversely, I have witnessed many growers mix just about anything and well, the offspring just don’t have that WOW factor like EP’s.

Exotica Plants
Geoff and Andrea, owners of Exotica Plants.

Here at Redleaf Exotics, there are many potential hybrids we have passed because we believe the traits wouldn’t bring out the best in the offspring. Above all, complimentary traits are important! I walk around the greenhouse for hours pondering my next hybrids . What combinations are going to work best together, I ask myself. It’s kind of like choosing the colors for the painters canvas! Of course all Nepenthes are beautiful, but we want to go above and beyond! Aside from Exotica, Redleaf Exotics has the most complex hybrids growing out in our seed trays and this should bring a whole new vibe to the US commercial market. EP certainly started us off with some top shelf ingredients:)

To sum it up, large peristomes and unusual traits is the goal here at Redleaf Exotics! I hope this article stimulated your imagination and I looking forward to providing you with more Nepenthes juice because they are the some of the most fascinating plants there are!

Thanks growers,

Domonick Gravine

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