Sarracenia rubra

This insectivorous plant has very distinctive leaves. They are tubular or pitcher-like, with a wing-like strip on the side facing inwards towards the centre of the rosette. Glandular hairs inside secrete enzymes that digest the bodies of captured insects. The leaf ‘pitchers’ are terminated by a kind of lid at the top. The drooping flowers, measuring up to 8 cm (3 in) long, grow singly on a long stiff stalk. They have a violet-like scent. The five-sepalled calyx is persistent, the corolla is composed of five petals that drop. The style is shaped like an umbrella. There are eight species in the genus Sarracenia, distributed throughout the Atlantic region of North America. 5”. rubra requires a light and well ventilated position. Provide cool conditions in winter. The best growing medium is a mixture of fresh sphagnum moss, peat, sand and charcoal. Water and mist the plant regularly.

Sarracenia purpurea

Northern Pitcher Plant is native to the Atlantic coast of North America. It grows in boggy places and on the wet shores of stagnant water. Its distribution extends to the Great Lakes. The leaves are 15-45 cm (6-8 in) long, and up to 10 cm (4 in) thick in the middle. They have broad wing-like stripes. The petals are purplish-red and drop along with the stamens within 14 days after the flower has opened. The flower then straightens and remains upright until the autumn.

Species vary considerably in their heat requirements; it is important to bear native habitats in mind. 5. purpurea is hardy and tolerates a light frost in winter. It can, in fact, be grown outdoors and will often become established. In summer it needs to be shaded. Sarracenias are generally propagated by vegetative means; divide clumps of plants and rhizomes. When propagating by means of seeds, sow them as soon as they are ripe, for they remain viable for only a short time. Sow them on the surface of moist sphagnum moss in a flat dish and cover the dish with glass. As soon as the seedlings are about 2 cm high, prick them out into the growing medium.

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