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TRIFFID PARK NEWS



Click here to view photos of our new nursery




OCTOBER 2009
12 months has passed since we moved premises to the new Triffid Park.  And WOW what a busy year we have had!  Our new nursery is continually being improved with irrigation, and internal improvements still taking place.  We recently installed a kitchen for staff and visitors.  A wash area with sink and bench has been installed for preparing export orders.  A clear fronted fertiliser cabinet has been added to our plant preparation room, which sends fertiliser through underground pipes to each growing room as needed.  And our piece de resistance - two hanging racks, almost the entire length of our growing room, with 9 lines on each rack, to hang the nepenthes on, with a watering dripper for every basket.  The plants are all relishing their new growing environment.  All the preparation and time we took to install modern growing systems has certainly paid off, with the plants looking better than ever.  The Sarracenias are coming up earlier after winter, the nepenthes are flourishing and the fly traps are growing so fast, we have filled the entire fly trap house and have had to put more in other rooms!
As mentioned previously, Triffid Park joined the NGIV - Nursery and Garden Industry of Victoria, at the start of 2009.  The NGIV hold annual awards for the nursery industry in many categories.  A written submission must be submitted along with photos.  We entered the NGIV annual awards in 3 categories: Best small production nursery, Best propagation nursery, and NGI Export award.  There is some tough competition in the industry, but we are hoping for some good feedback and advice from the judges on how to improve our nursery even more.  The judges visited on October 16th.  The state awards presentation is to be held in mid-November.  Fingers Crossed!
We have been attending many field days, craft markets and garden shows since spring started, and have many more to attend, selling our plants, and showing people who have never seen these wonderful and fascinating plants, just what they are all about.  We have attracted many new fans of carnivorous plants.  If you are in Victoria and would like to view some of our wonderful plants, please visit the home page of our web site for a full list of the shows and field days we are attending this spring/summer.

Members of the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society talk to visitors at our Annual Open Day in October 2009.

Visitors in our "Carniseum" room at our Open Day, October 2009.

MAY 2009
On Sunday 22nd March 2009, Triffid Park hosted the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society monthly meeting in our "Carniseum" room.  A bbq lunch was supplied by Triffid Park with members bringing desserts to share.  Members enjoyed viewing our world class wholesale and mail order carnivorous plant nursery in the peak of autumn growth.  Around 25 adults and children called in over the course of the afternoon for lunch and the monthly meeting.  At the topic of the day session, Jason showed a tray of Cross Teeth venus fly traps, which had gone very deep red in color.  Afterwards, members were invited to take some of the plants home with them to enjoy.  We hope everyone who came enjoyed themselves.  We certainly had a great day, enjoyed catching up with members and families, and hope to make it an annual event.  The room the luncheon was held in is to be used for school groups and garden clubs for a talk about carnivorous plants before touring the growing houses.  This room is on its way to being complete with the toilet block now finished and the wall between the meeting room and production room built, complete with viewing window into the production room.
This year, Triffid Park became members of the NGIV - Nursery and Garden Industry of Victoria.  This gives us access to more selling avenues for both our carnivorous and water plants, as well as being able to attend and sell at the monthly wholesale Trade Days.

SEPTEMBER 2008

Hooray!!!  We have moved.  Finally all the months of waiting for council permits, builders, internal fitters etc is over, and we have moved into our brand new purpose built carnivorous plant nursery.
Our new growing house is a modern, environmentally friendly, state of the art carnivorous plant nursery.  The entire roof span is designed to catch all rain water that falls on it, and the gutters run into 2 x 50,000 litre water tanks.  The whole nursery is then watered off these tanks, by way of capillary tray system.  This way the plants only take up what water they require and none is wasted.  The roof vents open to allow fresh air in to cool the houses and let hot air escape on warmer days, and close when the temperature drops to retain heat.  The roof vents have shade cloth covers in them to stop larger insects, birds and bats from entering the growing houses for quarantine purposes.  Thermal screens close at night to retain heat from escaping through the roof.  Summer screens slide across inside the house when the sun is too bright on the plants.  Foggers operate from the water tanks to cool the houses if the temperature in them gets too hot, and helps to create humidity.  Circulation fans operate on a timer to circulate air within the houses.  Gas heaters turn on when the temperature inside 3 of the houses drops below the set temperature.  The new carnivorous plant nursery is one large building 32 metres x 40 metres in size.  This is divided into 5 growing areas - Sarracenias - Dionaeas - Propagating - Nepenthes - Cool growing (for Droseras, Utricularias, Pinguiculas, Dionaeas and smaller Sarracenias).  The large Sarracenia house has been fitted with rolling benches to utilize more floor space with plants.  Two more rooms have been set aside.  One for our potting/packing room.  And the other a display room for school groups and garden clubs to have talks and lectures before touring the growing rooms.  The display room has been name the "Carniseum". 
Click here to view photos of our new nursery.

Jason, Donna, Kyle, Ryan, Colin and Tina attended the 7th annual International Carnivorous Plant Society Conference from 25th -28th September 2008 at the Royal Botanic Gardens in Sydney, Australia.  This was a great experience, we met lots of lovely people and the lecturers gave some wonderful talks and showed us their fantastic photos from their recent trips and expeditions.
 

MARCH 2008
Please note: Triffid Park now has a new phone number - 0428 587 162,
a new fax number - 03 5977 7301,
and new address for posting letters to - 103 Dandenong-Hastings Road, Somerville, Vic, 3912.
At present we still have not moved the nursery to our new address, so if you want to visit, please phone to make an appointment at our Keysborough nursery.
Work is progressing well with our new carnivorous plant nursery in Somerville.  At present we have had many truck loads of soil dumped on the new nursery site to raise the ground level 300mm above the original soil level.  This has been levelled by a bulldozer and grader and is now waiting for gravel to be put down.  The builder will then start on the footings and begin building of the growing house.  We will then have fitted internal thermal screens at around 3 metres high to control the temperature and light throughout the growing house, growing benches and watering system by way of capillary system, foggers to create humidity, as well as our work area for potting and packing orders and a conservatory style room for garden clubs and school groups, for talks and lectures before visiting the growing houses.  We hope to have all this finished by August this year.  So far it has been a slow progress with council, but we look to be well on our way now and are planning our Annual Open Day at our new nursery in Somerville on Sunday 9th November 2008.  More information will be supplied later in the year.
For our new customers - The freeway from Melbourne will bring you straight to the gateway of our new nursery by car.  Depending on the traffic is is about a 45 minute to 1 hour car drive from Melbourne.  The Somerville train station is only 4 kilometres away, and it takes 1 hour and 15 minutes by train from Melbourne.
You can view all the photos of building progress on our web site page.  Click here.
 

Our eldest son Kyle, who will turn 6 on the 1st June, started school in Prep this year.

October 2007
Jason and Donna Smith are officially now the new owners of Triffid Park (Australia) Pty. Ltd.
As we write, our plans are in council waiting for our new modern growing house to be approved.  Our new site in Somerville, Victoria, on the Mornington Peninsula will house the new modern Triffid Park with rain gutter connected growing houses, potting and packing area under the one roofline as the plants growing, so that the plants do not have to leave their growing environment to be worked on, a conservatory style room for garden clubs and school groups, for talks and lectures before visiting the growing houses and individually temperature controlled rooms for each genera of carnivorous plant to re-create their required environments.  The Freeway from Melbourne will bring you straight to our gateway by car.  Depending on the traffic it is about a 45 minute to 1 hour car drive from Melbourne.  The Somerville train station is only 4 kilometres away, and it takes 1 hour 15 minutes by train from Melbourne.
So far we have planted 180 indigenous trees and shrubs in the front 10 metre boundary of our property.  This is to be a shelter belt for wildlife in front of where our new growing house will be.   View the photos on our special NEW TRIFFID PARK WEB PAGE.
So much for Colin and Tina's retirement!  Since "retiring" they made the trip to the Nepenthes conference in Malaysia, which they really enjoyed.  They caught up with lots of carnivorous plant enthusiasts, some that they had met before at other conferences around the world and many new faces.  Here they attended the 2 day conference and then joined the bus for 2 days of field trips where they saw some magnificent Nepenthes growing in the wild.
They have also visited Albany in Western Australia to visit Cephalotus follicularis sites for Colin's much anticipated book on the topic.  Because of Cephalotus's fire dependency, Colin finds it one of the hardest plants to find in the wild.  However it was a pleasure for them to see Droseras and Utricularias growing in abundance in the area during spring.

 

On Saturday 2nd and Sunday 3rd December, the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society held their annual show at a local nursery.  As always, Triffid Park awarded a $25 gift voucher to the plant of our choice, which we thought was worthy and unusual and had not won other prizes on the weekend.   We chose a Drosera binata, which we nicknamed "Cousin It".

"COUSIN IT"

EVENT: TRIFFID PARK'S ANNUAL CARNIVOROUS PLANT OPEN DAY.
DATE: SUNDAY 29TH OCTOBER 2006
TIME: 12pm - 5pm
VENUE:
 Triffid Park,
257 Perry Road, Keysborough, Vic.
SPECIAL ATTRACTION:
At 2.30pm a Nepenthes cutting demonstration took place and everyone got to take home a free plant.  THANK YOU to Peter Anderson from the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society for giving
a fantastic demonstration for us.

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Peter Anderson with David Bond from the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society give a demonstration on taking Nepenthes cuttings.

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Donna at the sales tent.

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Jason helping visitors select their plants.

 

October 2006

During May 2006 Colin and Tina visited southern France's premier Carnivorous plant nursery where they were warmly welcomed by the owner.  They enjoyed a personal guided tour of the nursery, its indoor and outdoor growing areas and conference room.  It was a beautifully presented and laid out nursery, orientated towards education where gardening groups and school children are shown an educational video to start with and are then given the opportunity to have a hands on experience potting up a carnivorous plant. 
Next door to the Roland Garros Tennis Stadium where the French Open is held, Colin and Tina visited Josephine Bonaparte's carnivorous plant collection at Le Jardin botanique de la Ville de Paris.  She had the gardens built herself to house her carnivorous plant collection.

May 2006

Triffid Park's Annual Open Day was held last year on Sunday 23rd October 2005. We had record attendance and many people found some great plants to add to their collections.  We held a Nepenthes deflasking demonstration and everyone got to take home one or two free Nepenthes to grow on.  Members of the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society were in attendance to talk to, and they held their October meeting in our undercover pool area.
We have started to produce fully printed labels for the "Collector's List Sarracenias".  This is to make them easier to read and prevent the marker washing the names off.  It also gives us the opportunity to list what makes up the hybrid crosses on the labels for your information.  So look out for these next time you order Sarracenias.
Earlier this year, Colin and Tina visited Sri Lanka to discover what wonders this country has to offer and of course see it's carnivorous plants.  There are 18 species, comprising 3 families that are indigenous to Sri Lanka - Drosera, Nepenthes and Utricularia.  As well as 2 species of sub-carnivorous plants that have become naturalized in Sri Lanka.  Colin and Tina drank the miraculous properties of the liquid found in un-opened Nepenthes distillatoria pitchers.  Colin took many G.P.S. readings while there, for his new book - "Carnivorous Plants in Sri Lanka".

September 2005 - March 2006

IT'S A BOY!.  Donna gave birth to Ryan Nathon Smith, a healthy 8lb 11.5oz boy on Saturday 7th May 2005.  He is a brother for Kyle who turned 3 years old on 1st June.  Dad, Jason is thrilled, and the grandparents, Colin and Tina are happy to have another grandson (and to have Donna back at work!).
Jason and Donna had Ryan Christened on Sunday 4th September in the church where they were married 10 years ago.  Then they had a spit roast lunch at their home for family and friends.
Colin has finally completed his book on sub-carnivorous plants.   He started writing this book 10 years ago, back when we had our retail nursery in Dingley.  "Sub-Carnivorous Plants in Australia" features the many different plants that fall under this category, including some that have never been written about before.  It tells how to conduct tests to tell if plants are genuinely carnivorous and lists other suspected quasi-carnivorous plants.  An interesting book, and nothing else has ever been written like it before.
Tina and Colin recently visited Seychelles where Colin climbed 2 mountains solo with no team or guide.  Tina sat in the car and studied French!  Here Colin found vast areas of Nepenthes pervillei growing.  He has used the information that he collected for another new book - "Seychelles Carnivorous Plants - A Field Guide and Cultural Notes to the Indigenous and Exotic Species".  After travelling the world, it was the most expensive place they have ever visited!

March 2005 - August 2005

We would like to welcome Donna's husband Jason to the staff of Triffid Park.  As of Monday 31st January 2005 he joined us as a full time employee, helping to grow the carnivorous plants, including potting, weeding, deflasking tissue cultures, packing orders, driving the delivery van, working in the water plants, wire works, horse agistment and all the other jobs that are associated with the running of Triffid Park. 

During November 2004, Colin and Tina Clayton visited French Island, Victoria, Australia, where they saw a different and as yet, undescribed variety of Drosera peltata.  After 20 years of scouring the world in search of carnivorous plants, they have found the most difficult place to research right at our back door.  French Island is only 60 kilometres from Melbourne, separated from the main land by a mere 2 kilometres.  It has been separated from Victoria since the end of the last ice age, 9000 years ago, when its melting ice flooded Bass Straight.   The national park is 11,000-hectares in size, has no transport to hire, badly maintained roads and tracks, interspersed with bog holes and locked gates.  Millions of mosquitos, Tiger snakes too numerous to mention, even the much travelled Tina was daunted.  Other carnivorous plants that grow on the island include: Drosera pygmaea, Drosera binata, Drosera auriculata, Drosera peltata, Drosera glanduligera, Drosera macrantha, Drosera spatulata, Drosera whittakeri, Utricularia tenella and Utricularia dichotoma.

Triffid Park’s Annual Open Day for 2004 was held on Sunday 24th October.
The weather was lovely and all of our visitors were welcome to wander through our growing houses and purchase from our vast range of carnivorous plants.  Many brought a picnic lunch to enjoy in our undercover pool area.  Thank you to the many members of the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society who attended and were on hand to talk about growing carnivorous plants in the home backyard.  With thanks to Paul Edwards and David Bond who gave a Sarracenia potting demonstration where people could learn to pot their own plant and then take it home for free.  This year we celebrated the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Societies 20th anniversary.  A free raffle for a $50 gift voucher to Triffid Park was raffled on the day. 

 September 2004 - February 2005

This year is the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Societies 20th Anniversary.  They held a dinner to commemorate the event inviting all present and past members to attend.
During June 2004, Colin and Tina of Triffid Park attended the 5th International Carnivorous Plant Society Conference in Lyon, France.  They sat in the sales area on the Friday selling our large range of books.  Over the weekend the lectures were held at the conference centre.  Colin and Tina have the honour of being the only people to have attended all 5 international carnivorous plant conferences around the world!  On Monday 21st June they went on the field trip with the conference, east of Lyon into the Bella Donna Mountains.  They stopped at 3 different locations to see carnivorous plants which included 2 types of Pinguiculas, Drosera rotundifolia and Utricularia minor.
 

March 2004 - August 2004
In September 2003, Colin and Tina Clayton along with 7 members of the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society journeyed to Western Australia, in search of carnivorous plants, and especially the much sought after Cephalotus follicularis (Albany pitcher plant).  They found everything that they were looking for and much more.

 

Donna in our Dionaea house during November 2003.

Donna in our Collector's Sarracenia house - November 2003.

Kyle in our Collector's Sarracenia house - November 2003.

Colin in Triffid Park's Collector's Sarracenia house during November 2003.

Triffid Park’s Annual Open Day was held on Sunday 26th October 2003.
We had many members of the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society in attendance, as well as many visitors from Victoria and a couple from New South Wales.  We were also pleased to make welcome John Ainsworth from England and his wife and family.  John is the author of the book "Sarracenia" and was only too happy to autograph books on the day.  We still have copies of the book available, and John autographed some of them for us.  These are available at $25 posted worldwide (add 10% GST within Australia).

 

September 2003 - February 2004

Once again, Colin Clayton, owner of Triffid Park, has been hard at it writing his books on Field Guides and Cultural Notes to the Indigenous Species of Carnivorous Plants.  He has finally completed 5 years of research into his New South Wales book, and this is now available for sale.  An exciting find for Colin while researching this book was to find a huge patch of Utricularia biloba in northern New South Wales.

In May 2003, Colin and Tina visited Tony Camilleri, author of the book "Carnivorous Plants", in Darwin.  Tony took them to a place where Peter Taylor describes in his book "The Genus Utricularia" as the best Utricularia site in the world, and it didn't disappoint.

Colin Clayton sitting amongst the Utricularias near Darwin.

Colin Clayton with Tony Camilleri at Peter Taylor's "spot", at Howard Springs, Darwin.

Colin on the board walk over a Utricularia swamp at Yellow Water, Couindra, Kakadu National Park.

Colin in a field of Utricularias at Couindra, Kakadu National Park

We have several new books for sale in our catalogue, including the original 1942 book by Francis Ernest Lloyd - "The Carnivorous Plants".  As well as an exciting CD Rom of Charles Darwin's work on the carnivorous plants from 1875.  Make sure you read our Books For Sale page to see these and many more new and fascinating books on Carnivorous Plants.

Donna and Jason's son Kyle turned one on the first of June 2003.

1st-June-2003 Kyle with Jessica, at Kyle's 1st Birthday Party

Sharon and Jedd 1st-June-2003

Donna and Kyle 1st-June-2003

Jason and Kyle 1st-June-2003

In August 2003 Colin and Tina visited Port Lincoln, South Australia.  Here they were very excited to find Drosera stricticaulis in a swamp at Marble Range.

 

March 2003 - August 2003

Colin has finished writing two more books in his series.  They are "Carnivorous Plants In Central Australia.  A Field Guide and Cultural Notes to the Indigenous Species" which features seven carnivorous plants.  And "Carnivorous Plants on Kangaroo Island, South Australia.  A Field Guide and Cultural Notes to the Indigenous Species".  Colin considers this his best book yet.  It features 11 carnivorous plants, including one that has never been formerly identified before.

Colin, along with Tina's help is still researching carnivorous plants in New South Wales, South Australia and the top end of the Northern Territory for new books.  While in South Australia on a recent trip, they visited the Herbarium to look at specimens. 

Triffid Park now has 4 computers, 4 printers, 2 fax machines, 1 scanner and two digital cameras to help operate the business, run the web site and produce Colin's range of books.

We were pleased to present to the most outstanding carnivorous plant of our choice, that had not won any other awards, at the V.C.P.S. show late last year, the "Clayton's Triffid Park Award".  We chose a Drosera adelae terrarium, owned by Stewart McIlroy.  Stewart won a $25 gift voucher to Triffid Park.

Donna's son Kyle is a happy little boy who comes to work each day at Triffid Park where he can play with his toys and see his Nanny and Gramps.

Earlier this year we made welcome Kosuke Kondo (nephew of Katsuhiko Kondo) and his girlfriend Hitomi.  They came for dinner with our family.

 

September 2002 - February 2003

IT'S A BOY!!!  Donna gave birth to a healthy baby boy at 7.21am on Saturday 1st June 2002.  Kyle Jadon Smith weighed in at 3.975kg or 8 pounds 12.2 ounces.  He is growing fast and comes to work each day with Donna.
On the 8th September 2002, Donna and Jason had Kyle Christened at the same church they were married in.

Kyle Jadon Smith's Christening - 6th September 2002.

Kyle's Christening party

Kyle's Christening Cake

Colin and Tina attended the fourth International Carnivorous Plant Society Conference in Japan during June.  As well as attending the lectures, they had a stand in the sales area, selling books on Carnivorous Plants. 
"Proceedings from the 4th International Carnivorous Plant Conference, Tokyo, Japan, June 21 - June 23, 2002" is available for sale from Triffid Park and is a book containing all the lectures given during the conference. 
The conference was followed by a field trip to Mount Koushin to view Pinguicula ramosa.  Colin took part in this eight hour round trip hike.  Colin and Tina then had the honour of being guests of Yusuke Kondo (brother of Professor Katsuhiko Kondo) and Kosuke Kondo in Nagoya for several days.

Colin and Tina then attended the Third European Carnivorous Plant Exchange and Exhibition at the Botanical Garden of Leiden in Holland during August where they also held a stall selling carnivorous plant books.  They took the opportunity while there to spend a day looking around Floriade 2002 near Amsterdam.  While driving around Holland, Colin and Tina discovered Drosera rotundifolia and Utricularia vulgaris in de Weerribben National Park.  They found the Tjasker Windmills in Holland very fascinating.  These windmills are made of one long axle which lays on its side, and is used for draining reed land.

Colin sitting in a field of Drosera rotundifolia infront of a Tjasker Windmill.

Utricularia vulgaris in a water lily pond.


March 2002 - August 2002

Donna and her husband, Jason spent four days and three nights over the Christmas holidays with four of their horses, pack horse riding around the South Gippsland forest in Victoria.  All their food, horse food, cooking equipment and sleeping gear was carried on the two lead horses.  They slept out under the stars, and cooked on an open fire.  This was while Donna was 19 weeks pregnant!

Donna riding her horse Rocket and leading her pack horse Princess

Whilst researching his book on Carnivorous Plants of New South Wales, Australia, in early February 2002, Colin and Tina saw 10's of 1000's of Drosera binata which had regenerated after the Christmas bushfires.  They were a spectacular sight with their metre high flower spikes.
While on the trip, Colin and Tina discovered a huge easily accessible site of the rare Utricularia biloba.  Up to date this plant has been extremely difficult to locate, as the well known site in the Royal National Park has been subject to drought conditions for a number of years.  1000's of plants of Aldrovanda vesiculosa were rediscovered in a very large swamp south of Sydney.  It must be the most southerly habitat on the east coast of Australia.

We were visited by Daniel M. Joel - co-author of the book "The Carnivorous Plants" on the 14th September 2001. Colin and Tina had previously met Danny at the 3rd International Carnivorous Plant Society Conference in San Francisco in 2000. Danny spent the day with us at Triffid Park looking through our growing houses, and discussing carnivorous plants with us. He has invited Colin and Tina to visit him in his home country of Israel, so you never know where Colin's next book might be coming from!

Triffid Park's Open Day was held on Saturday 27th October 2001.  We spent many months preparing for our Open Day.  We wanted to have the growing houses looking good, and our guests were not disappointed with all of the sarracenias out in flower. 
This year we also celebrated Colin's 60th birthday with a BBQ lunch, salad, drinks, and cake supplied by Triffid Park.  Thank you for the lovely and thoughtful present given to Colin from the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society for his birthday.

Triffid Park was proud to present the "Triffid Park Award" at the V.C.P.S. annual show to Stephen Fretwell for his Drosera binata f. pink flower.  We choose a plant that we think is outstanding, but has not received any other awards on the day.  Stephen received a $25 gift voucher to use on his next visit to Triffid Park

We are proud to release Sarracenia 'Mardi Gras' for sale.  This plant is a hybrid of Sarracenia (leucophylla x psittacina) x (leucophylla x purpurea) and was hybridised by Dr. Larry Mellichamp from the University of Charlotte in North Carolina, U.S.A..

 

September 2001 – February 2002

A very busy year has been had so far at Triffid Park.  The 5th book in Colin Clayton's series is now available for sale - "Carnivorous Plants in Hawaii - A Field Guide and Cultural Notes to the Indigenous Species".
Colin and Tina, owners of Triffid Park, flew to Hawaii in May 2001 to work on this book and study the plants in their natural habitat. As well as other plants, the book features Hawaii’s single native carnivorous plant that can only be found on the island of Kauai. It has many photos and the most up to date information and maps on the amazing plants that grow in Hawaii.

Colin and Tina took over Donna’s jobs while Donna rode her horse Geronimo from Healesville in Victoria, to Canberra A.C.T. earlier this year.  The 900km trip took 38 days along Australia’s Bicentennial National Trail, through Victoria's high country and Kosciusko National Park. She had an absolutely amazing time, loved every minute of her six week journey, and is planning her next ride - not if Colin and Tina can help it !  Click here to read a brief summary of her trip.  Not one carnivorous plant was spotted on the whole journey - but was she looking for them?  Of course I was Dad!!!

Colin and Tina also spent two weeks in June traveling around California researching carnivorous plants for another book in Colin’s series of field guides and cultural notes. They met up with Hawkeye Rondeau (author of "Carnivorous Plants of the West"), who helped them with some locations. They visited some fantastic places such as Butterfly Valley, California, U.S.A., where they saw Darlingtonia californica's growing in the wild, and Willow Lake in California where they saw floating islands of Drosera anglica.  

Colin walking through Darlingtonias in Butterfly Valley, California, U.S.A. 2001

Tina standing on a floating island of Drosera anglica in Willow Lake California, U.S.A. 2001

Colin also finished work on another new book now available for sale called “Carnivorous Plants - Naming, Collecting and Preserving Herbarium Specimens”.  It describes how to name, collect and preserve Carnivorous Plants as herbarium specimens, with a long section on how to pronounce Carnivorous Plant names. It is the only book like it and is a must for serious Carnivorous Plant collectors.

We were visited by Dr. Ramesh Singh Chouhan, founder of the first Carnivorous Plant Society in India on the 12th March 2001.

It is the 50th Anniversary of the first publication of John Wyndham's book "The Day of the Triffid's".  For anyone who has not read this fascinating science fiction book, it is available from Triffid Park.

 

March 2001 – August 2001

We were honored to play host at Triffid Park in October 2000 to
Yusuke Kondo and his wife Yoko from Japan, and their son Kosuke who lives in Adelaide.  Yusuke is the brother of Professor Katsuhiko Kondo.  Colin and Tina met Yusuke and Katsuhiko Kondo at the Third International Carnivorous Plant Society Conference in San Francisco during June 2000.

In November 2000, we were also privileged to have John Ainsworth from the U.K., author of the book "Sarracenia", and his son Nigel, who lives in Melbourne, visit us for the second time.

 

September 2000 – February 2001

Colin Clayton has just finished work on his latest book "Carnivorous Plants in New Caledonia - A Field Guide and Cultural Notes to the Indigenous Species".  Colin and Tina flew to New Caledonia in September to work on this book and study the plants in their natural habitat.  The book features Nepenthes vieillardii which is the most southern growing nepenthes in the world.  It has many photos and the most up to date information on the amazing harsh habitat that this plant grows in.  They also found Drosera neo-caledonica and Utricularia uliginosa.

Colin and Tina attended the third International Carnivorous Plant Society conference from the 16th to 18th June 2000 in San Francisco, U.S.A..  They spent a very interesting three days listening to lectures, talks and viewing slide shows on varying subjects both technical and personal experiences relating to carnivorous plants. 
They visited Peter D'Amato's nursery 'California Carnivores', north of San Francisco.  Peter is the author of the book "The Savage Garden" which has recently won the American Horticultural Society's Book Award. 
Prior to the conference Tina and Colin flew to the east coast of America where they met up in North Carolina with Professor Larry Mellichamp who kindly spent a couple of days showing them around Green Swamp and other areas. 
They then drove to Charlotte in North Carolina where Larry Mellichamp is a Professor at the University of North Carolina.  Here Larry showed them some magnificent new sarracenias that he has hybridized. 
After leaving North Carolina they drove south to the infamous Okefenokee Swamp in Georgia, where Sarracenia minor f. Okefenokee giant grow. 

Triffid Park held its Open Day for 2000 on Saturday 28th October.  This was combined with the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society's October meeting.  A b.y.o. BBQ was held and a great day was enjoyed by all who attended, many finding some great bargains, and many unusual plants to add to their collections.  Horse rides were given to all the children and even the President, Peter Anderson, had a ride on the trusty steed.

 

March 2000 – August 2000

Triffid Park has bought their own domain name, so they can be soley independant of any web service providers.

Up until now we have been posting out "Triffid Park News" four times per year.  It has become too large a job to update and post out four copies per year, so we will now only be doing two updates per year, in Melbourne's Autumn (March) and Spring (September). 

Donna and her husband Jason had a wonderul two week holiday in Phuket, Thailand, followed by a one week cruise from Phuket down the coast to Singapore and back, stopping at ports along the way.
Donna returned not only to work, but to her 30th birthday on the 3rd March, which she celebrated at Colin and Tina's house with family and friends.

During January, Tina and Colin visited the South Island of New Zealand where they started research on their next book - Carnivorous Plants in New Zealand.  They found Lewis Pass on the South Island of New Zealand a beautiful and fascinating place.

They also made the drive to Mount Kosciusko during January and March for research on carnivorous plants in New South Wales.
Colin and Tina enjoy researching carnivorous plants in various parts of the world, and have turned their interest in these plants along with their interest in travelling, into the very large project of writing books on the subject.

 

December 1999 – February 2000

STOP PRESS: "Carnivorous Plants in Tasmania - A Field Guide and Cultural Notes to the Indigenous Species" written by Colin H. Clayton, owner of Triffid Park, is now released for sale.  The book gives map and GPS references of where to find the growing locations of all the native Tasmanian carnivorous plants.  It also includes cultural notes, propagation techniques, growing seasons and photos of all the plants.  Colin has spent many years researching this book, along with the help of his wife Tina. 
"Carnivorous Plants in Victoria - A Field Guide and Cultural Notes to the Indigenous Species" also written by Colin, was released in December 1998, has now been updated with many name changes of plants and an easier to read format.

Triffid Park held its annual Open Day on Saturday 23rd October 1999.  We had many visitors from all over Australia come to view our wonderful display of carnivorous plants and meet the members of the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society.  Our guests enjoyed a B.Y.O. BBQ, and then wandered around our growing houses, meeting new people, and swapping growing techniques.  The day was enjoyed by all, so much so that the V.C.P.S. did not hold a formal meeting, but instead just spent the afternoon talking c.p.'s to everyone.

Peter Anderson won the $25 gift certificate for the Clayton's Triffid Park Award at the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society's annual show held in November.  We chose his Sarracenia flava f. red tube x alata f. red throat as our choice for a stunning plant that had not won any other awards at that years show.

Donna and her husband Jason had a wonderful trip to the Mallee, the desert in north west Victoria.  They spent a week riding their horses and camping out each night.  Donna went in search of Drosera indica and Utricularia lateriflora, but could find none.

   

September 1999 – November 1999

Spring is here in Melbourne, Australia and all the carnivorous plants are growing well and flowering. 

Colin and Tina have just returned from Alaska where they studied Alaskan and circumpolar (above the arctic circle) carnivorous plants.  They did a lot of research and gathered as much information as they could to put towards a new book in the future about carnivorous plants that grow in this area.  Their trip took them to such wonderful places as Denali National Park, where they visited Horseshoe Lake, below the old white mountain, just a little south east of Nome (for those of you who know the song "North to Alaska".

On the 17th July, we celebrated Colin and Tina's grandson Jedd's first birthday.  His sister Jessica turns four on the 26th September.  They love to come to Triffid Park and play with all the animals, and go for rides on the tractor.  Jessica loves to help her Aunty Donna in the igloos picking out plants for the mail orders.

 

June 1999 – August 1999

We have now purchased a further 10 acres of land alongside our property.  This new property has no fences for horses, so we will design and build another 10 paddocks to add to our existing 14 horse paddocks which we lease for agistment.  This now gives us 35 acres of land (14 hectares).  We have also bought a post hole rammer to attach to the back of a tractor, so that we can do all the fencing ourselves.

 

March 1999 – May 1999

Colin and Tina spent a week in Tasmania, in late January studying carnivorous plants.  After the success of their first book, they are now working on their second book "Carnivorous Plants in Tasmania - A Field Guide and Cultural Notes to the Indigenous Species".  A where to find them book, with maps and GPS references, along with cultural notes, propagation techniques, growing seasons and photos.  They will have the book ready for sale in December 1999 after they have been back to Tasmania in spring, to research all the winter growing and spring flowering plants.

In December we had a visit from a Carnivorous Plant collector and customer of ours - Clayton Low, from Singapore.  Clayton is 15 years old and has been corresponding with us by email each week for the past year or so, and finally got the opportunity to come to Triffid Park when he was holidaying in Melbourne with his mum.

David Bond (ex president of the V.C.P.S.) and his family have returned from their year travelling around America.  They found many carnivorous plants on their trip, and David has written all about it in the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society journals.  Contact the society if you want to find out more. They visited Triffid Park on the 15th January and we celebrated David's birthday while they were here.

Donna celebrated her birthday on the 3rd March by spending a few days on the Murray River, water-skiing with her husband Jason.  This is where Donna and Jason spent two weeks enjoying their Christmas holidays also.
Colin and Tina had a wonderful holiday travelling around Spain, Portugal and Morocco for 3 weeks in February. 

We now have our seventh, and last igloo full of pygmy droseras, pinguiculas, and Sarracenia purpureas.  We have set this igloo up with our capillary tray system.  All the plants are watered and fertilised from the bottom.

 

December 1998 – February 1999

Triffid Park's Open Day on the 24th October 1998 for all of our customers, in conjunction with the V.C.P.S. was a great success.  It gave people the opportunity to meet with other CP enthusiasts and members of the society and also take a look through our growing houses.  Many people found some new and interesting plants and books to purchase.  The day was finished off with the V.C.P.S. meeting.

On the 14th and 15th November 1998, at the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society's annual show, Triffid Park awarded the 'Clayton's Award of a gift voucher to the value of $25 to the most outstanding carnivorous plant of our choice which has not won an award on the day.  The winner of the "Clayton's Triffid Park Award" was won by Peter Anderson for his Drosera binata.

 

September 1998 – November 1998

Triffid Park is having an Open Day on the 24th October 1998 for all of our customers, in conjunction with the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society's October meeting.  The day starts at about 12pm, and there will be a b.b.q. available for use, BYO all food, drink, plates and cutlery.  Chairs and tables are provided.  This proved very popular last year as it gives you the opportunity to meet with other CP enthusiasts and after lunch take a look through our growing houses, with the opportunity to buy our carnivorous plants.  Then the day is finished off with the V.C.P.S. October meeting, which everyone is invited to stay for.

The 2nd I.C.P.S. Conference was held in Germany, from 30th May to 1st June 1998, at the Botanical Gardens in the University of Bonn.  Colin and Tina from Triffid Park attended the Conference as the representatives of the V.C.P.S.  Approximately 80 delegates attended from many parts of the world.  There were 21 speakers who gave lectures, and some subjects were illustrated by some excellent slide programmes, particularly those on Nepenthes.
During the three day Conference an exhibition of carnivorous plants was on display in the Botanical Gardens, which was also open to the general public.  This was put together with stock from the Botanical Gardens as well as from members of the German Carnivorous Plant Society.
Colin and Tina were also given the opportunity to visit the collection of carnivorous plants housed at the Botanical Gardens, which was extremely well looked after and of a very high standard.
After the Conference they drove across to Holland to visit some large wholesale carnivorous plant nurseries, and then did a 16 day bus tour of Scandinavia and Russia.

Colin and Tina now have a new baby grandson, Jedd William Hudson, who was born to their oldest daughter Sharon and son-in-law Craig on the 17th July.  They will now be very busy baby sitting him as well as his sister Jessica who will turn three on the 26th September.

Colin is writing a book called "Carnivorous Plants in Victoria - A Field Guide and Cultural Notes to the Indigenous Species" which should be ready for release in December.  The book gives map and GPS references of where to find the growing locations of all the native Victorian Carnivorous Plants, for any one coming to Victoria and wanting to see carnivorous plants in their natural habitat.  It also includes cultural notes, propagation techniques, growing seasons and photos of all the plants.

 

June 1998 – August 1998

We received an email and post card from David Bond (ex-president of the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society) and his family who are spending 1998 travelling in a mobile home around the west side of America.  They have been to Colorado Springs, Disneyland, L.A., Las Vegas, Zion National Park, Grand Canyon, Tuscon, Tombestone, Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Taos, Denver and much more.  They then went on to San Francisco where they met some Carnivorous Plant enthusiasts.  We will be very excited to see all their photos when they return.

We were lucky enough to have the pleasure of meeting John Ainsworth, co-author with his wife Jean, of the book "Sarracenia".  John and his son Nigel, who lives in Melbourne, visited us on Thursday 19th March, while John was in Melbourne for his sons wedding on the 28th March.  Unfortunately due to ill health, Jean was not able to make the trip from England.  John was overwhelmed by the magnificent colors of our sarracenias here at Triffid Park, and could compare them to nothing that he had ever seen.  He was also fascinated in our growing techniques, especially our capillary trays.  John was also good enough to personally autograph 20 copies of his book "Sarracenia" while he was here.

We have started to clean out our last igloo, which has housed all of our junk since moving from Dingley, and we will have this seventh house full of plants for spring.  This is a big task, as there are many things that we don't want to throw out, but just don't know where to put.  Some things that came out of our retail nursery, such as spare sinks, a fridge, doors, windows, chairs and a table, a hand drier etc., will be very useful in our new horse agistment shed.  The 100 foot by 24 foot shed which we are building for the agistees at Triffid Park Horse Agistment, is coming along nicely with the lunch room almost finished.  The stables, wash bays, vet shed and feed and tack room will be built soon.

 

March 1998 – May 1998

We have had a very hot summer here in Melbourne, and haven't been doing a lot to our Carnivorous Plant nursery, except for the usual running of it, including watering, feeding, potting, weeding, picking out and packing mail orders, as well as local orders going to supermarkets and other nurseries and answering all our correspondence by email, fax and post.

Donna had two and a half weeks off over the Christmas period, so Colin and Tina had all of her work to do as well.  But they will be paying her back in late May when they jet off to the second International Carnivorous Plant Society Conference in Bonn, Germany, for 4 days and then spend another 3 weeks travelling around Holland, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Russia, Belarus and Poland.

We have just bought 4 hectares next door to Triffid Park which is all fully fenced and already leased out for horse agistment, and have built 4 new paddocks on our property for horse agistment as well.  We are building a 25 foot by 100 foot shed for facilities for the agistees and their horses including lunch room, stables, wash bays, vet sheds and feed and tack rooms.  This will be something else for us to do in our spare time (HA HA -what spare time!) and something else that we are all interested in as well as the carnivorous plants.  We have called it "Triffid Park Horse Agistment".

 

December 1997 – February 1998

We have had a very busy spring here at Triffid Park.  We have built a refrigerated bench in one igloo to grow our Darlingtonia californica's on.  They are growing on our new capillary tray system with chilled water, as opposed to the heated igloos with Dionaeas and Nepenthes growing in them.

On Saturday 25th October 1997, members of the V.C.P.S. visited Triffid Park.  We had an Open Day for members and their families.  They were invited to wander through our igloos and purchase anything that took their fancy.  A barbeque was enjoyed by all and then the club members held their monthly meeting on our front lawn, led by their new president, Peter Anderson.

The Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society held their annual show on the 22nd and 23rd November 1997 at a local nursery.  They had many specimen plants on show as well as plants for sale.  Each year, Triffid Park awards a plant which we consider very stunning or unusual and which has not won any other awards on the day.  This years prize of a $25 gift voucher to Trifid Park, was won by Ron Abernethy for his Sarracenia flava f. red tube, green lid.

Colin and Tina spent a week at the Grampians (mountain ranges) in western Victoria enjoying a hot air balloon flight and champagne breakfast.  Afterwards they searched the area for Victorias native droseras and utricularis.  They found 5 out of the 7 native droseras and 2 Utricularias including U. australis.

Donna hasn't been out searching the bush on horse back, after her horse slipped over while on a ride in early October, and she spent four weeks on crutches.  This made it quite difficult for her to pick out orders and weed, and basically do her everyday jobs.

 

September 1997 – November 1997

We now have all seven of our igloos built which are full of carnivorous plants and one which is being used for storage at the moment.  Two igloos have been heated by a gas heater to keep the temperature between 25 degrees and 35 degrees celcius all year round to grow Nepenthes and Dionaea Muscipulas in.  These igloos have been fitted with capillary trays for watering and fertilising.  This lets us control the amount of water and fertiliser to each pot and has no water wastage going on the floor.  An automatic misting sprayer has been set up over three capillary trays to keep nepenthes that have been deflasked and cuttings from drying out.  This also sprays out a fungicide each time the mister goes off.  A 400 watt metal halide lamp has been installed in one heated igloo to give the plants longer daylight hours during winter.

All of Victorias native droseras are now in full growth.  Colin and Tina spend many of their Sunday afternoons driving to various parts of the state just to witness and photograph them.  Donna spends many weekends on horse back travelling through the Victorian bush also looking for the natural habitat of these fascinating plants. 

Colin and Tina went to the Atlanta International Carnivorous Plant Conference from the 16th - 20th May 1997, which was hosted by the Atlanta Botanical Gardens and the International Carnivorous Plant Society, and was held at the Atlanta Botanical Garden, Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.A..  A welcome buffet on the Thursday night was followed by three days of lectures on many different aspects of Carnivorous Plants, backed up by visual slides.  There were tours of the Botanical Garden and the green houses as well as limited plant sales and exhibits by people all around the world.  The last two days were spent on a field trip to Florida, Alabama and Georgia bogs.  WOW!  What a sight!  Fields of leucophyllas all growing together, fields of red tube flavas all growing together, both up to 3-4 feet tall.  They saw bogs with S. purpureas, S. psittacinas, droseras, pinguiculas, utricularias and venus fly traps all growing together.  It was the most marvellous working holiday and they made many new friends and contacts in the CP world and hope to have some new and interesting plants available to you in the future.

 

June 1997 – August 1997

We have been very busy over the last months since our move from Dingley, building our growing houses for the carnivorous plants, and putting in electricity, gas and water to run them.  Six out of our seven igloos have been built and the other one is near completion. 
We have set up one room in our new house equipped with three desks, for our fax, phones and computer, printer and scanner.  All of our paper work, email letters, communication etc. is done from here.  Looking out the window we can see wild cockatoos and galahs which come to feed from our feeding boxes.  We also have a lovely view across our horse paddocks to the Dandenong ranges.

 

March 1997 – May 1997

Dingley Fern Market no longer exists.  Gone are the magnificent gardens and buildings, now just a memory, for they have been pulled down.  The land has been sold and the Clayton family's 50 year association with this piece of land in Dingley has been broken.
Colin and Tina have purchased a magnificent 6 hectare property in Keysborough, 10 kilometres from Dingley.  On this land we are building a modern nursery to grow carnivorous plants exclusively.  The new property has been called "Triffid Park", with the inspiration for this name coming from the old English film "Day of the Triffids".  The business will be basically mail order, with the nursery open only for personal shopping or inspection by appointment.  During the week you are most welcome to visit us, but ring first to make sure we are home.
And remember - after 20 years of running a retail nursery, we will definitely not be open on weekends or public holidays.  Donna, our youngest daughter has come with us and will be running the mail order part of the business and seeing to the correspondence, so most of your contact with Triffid Park will be through her.

This Page was last updated on Tuesday, 12 February 2013