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TRUMPET PITCHER PLANTS (Sarracenia)

  • Sarracenia, or the North American Pitcher plant, is a Genus of carnivorous plants indigenous to the eastern seaboard, Texas, the great lakes and south eastern Canada, with most species being found only in the south-eastern states
  • The eight species of Sarracenia are native to the sandy and peaty wetlands of eastern North America
  • Sarracenia purpurea (purple pitcher plant), the provincial flower of Newfoundland, is the only species indigenous to Canada with a habitat range extending to the southern boundary of the Northwest territories
  • Trumpet pitcher plants catch their prey by means of a pit-fall trap. The plant’s leaves have evolved into a funnel, with a hood like structure growing over the opening
  • Insects are attracted by colour, smell and a nectar-like secretion on the lip of the pitcher. Slippery footings, aided by a narcotic drug lacing the nectar, causes insects to fall inside where they die and are digested by enzymes
  • In some species like the parrot pitchers, the funnel lies almost flat against the ground while in others, such as Sarracenia Leucophylla, the pitcher can grow vertically up to 1m in height
  • It is possible to cross the various species of Sarracenia, and many colourful, vigorous hybrids are now available

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