do venus fly traps smell

Do Venus Flytraps Smell Bad? (Here’s Why & How To Fix It!)

Venus Fly Traps are beautiful, we all love the plants. They fit perfectly in modern homes. They add elegance and class to our homes.

What else do they add? Odor? Many people complain that their Venus Fly Traps are stinking. Let’s see why this happens and how to fix it.

What does a Venus flytrap smell like?

As we are talking about the smell of the Venus Flytrap, a question does arise. What should a healthy Venus flytrap smell like?

Venus Flytrap plants secrete nectar to attract flies and bugs. Nectar is sweet and flavorful, i.e., it doesn’t smell bad.

After the insects are caught in the trap, the juicy parts are digested. Hard shells of the insects remain in the trap.

Such hard shells also shouldn’t smell. To conclude, we can say that a healthy Venus flytrap doesn’t smell bad.

Do Venus flytraps smell bad?

Unfortunately, flytraps do smell bad on occasions. This may be due to a couple of reasons. There will be a slight odor in many cases.

But the odor shouldn’t fill the entire room. The subtle odor is normal, it arises from the decomposition of the dead insects.

Why do Venus fly traps smell bad?

There are two types of odors that can be attributed to Venus flytraps. They arise due to different reasons and arise from different sources.

From the plant

The smell may arise from the plant itself when the decomposition/digestion is going on. Do not go around smelling the plant, it’ll surely smell bad.

Sometimes you’ll see that the flytrap became black in color. If there’s a strong odor, it might be coming out of that affected flytrap.

The trap turns brown/black when the insect is trapped inside. In such instances, you’ll have a chance to smell one of the worst odors in the world!

It’s a normal part of the plant’s lifecycle. It’s hard to tell which trap is producing this awful odor.

If you can tell, you may want to cut that trap off the plant, only if the trap is brown/black. If the trap is green but still stinks, leave it alone.

Use gloves!

The odor will go off eventually. Do not ever touch the affected trap with your bare hands. The odor will stick to your hands and you’ll not be able to get rid of it easily.

You may want to use garden gloves when trimming the plant. Use sterilized scissors/snips.

From the potting mix

Sometimes the odor is coming from the potting mix. The odor may arise due to the type of the potting mix you use.

If the odor is like sulfur(similar to rotten egg smell), then it’s probably due to the potting mix. In such situations, the plant has got nothing to do with the odor.

This odor arises due to the anaerobic activity of the bacteria inside the potting mix. There’s very little oxygen in the deeper parts of the pot which leads to this odor.

This smell is more often found in pots with pure peat. The smell may also be found in pots where there have been waterlogged conditions.

This is rare though. If it is due to pure peat potting mix, then replace it with better potting mix.

How do you get rid of Venus flytrap smell?

First, try to find which flytrap is giving out the odor. If that particular trap is green, leave it alone. The odor will go off eventually.

If that smelly trap is brown/black, perhaps it’s time to cut it off the plant. Wear gloves while you do this and do so with a pair of sterilized scissors.

Potting mix odor

Is the odor due to the potting mix? If yes, then this calls for an immediate action. Such odor is reported by many of my readers. So, I decided to help you guys out with this article.

If the odor is like sulfur, i.e., like rotten eggs, then it’s due to the potting mix. Such smell is seen when the potting mix is pure peat.

In some cases, this smell is also given out by waterlogged potting mix. You can fix either of the problems easily.

If the potting mix is indeed smelly, you can replace it with fresh potting mix. This time try to use a mix that doesn’t give out odor.


Venus flytrap plants shouldn’t smell and they don’t smell as far as I know. But there are special cases which cause the odor.

You can find out the reason and fix it. VFT eating insects is definitely not the problem.

Odor arises due to rotting traps and sometimes due to the potting mix. Keep this in mind and fix the issue accordingly.

While you’re here read this awesome post on whether you should let your Venus Flytrap flower or not.

Happy Gardening 🙂