The PortaBog®

the PortaBog Since my bog is firmly rooted in my front yard, it is difficult to oblige the requests of the curious and interested desiring to see live examples of my carnivorous plants.  To overcome this obstacle, I have designed what has become known around the house as the PortaBog® - a portable mini ecosystem, designed to support a variety of carnivorous plants in an attractive package.  Now, I do have to add that, while the bog is portable, it is not an easy task to move it.   With appropriate moistened soil, it weighs approximately 70 pounds.

The design incorporates my reverse tray method that I 'invented' for my in-ground bog.  In this case it utilizes a 'leaky' water reservoir inserted into the soil of the bog.  The reservoir, in this case, is a 14" piece of  1.5 inch plastic pipe with a dozen or so small holes drilled into it.  The pipe was then wrapped with landscape cloth (to keep the soil from filling the tube) and secured with that green plastic gardening tape designed for securing plants to stakes.  Be sure the bottom end of the pipe is covered as well.  The pipe is cut long enough to reach the bottom of the pot.  The top is cut with a bevel that matches it with the surface of the soil.

The water level of the bog is controlled by observing the level of the water in the tube.  I usually try to keep it 6-8 inches below the soil surface.  This is 'in theory' however, because the actual level of the water can vary 8-12 inches depending on the evaporation that occurs during the heat of the day.  A hot day will result in the loss of as much as 16 ounces of water.

My first PortaBog is planted with 3 species of Drosera (rotundifolia, binata, filliformis), a hybrid pitcher plant (S. x Ladies in Waiting), a ping (P. grandiflora), a green and a red Dionaea (venus flytrap) and a patch of live sphagnum moss.
The term PortaBog® and its unique design are my own (to the best of my knowledge).  As such, I donate them to the public domain for the enhancement and promotion of carnivorous gardening.

© Terry Blackburn, 2002
PortaBog® is not really a registered trademark