During our spring seed shopping outing, we stumbled upon a Venus flytrap at the local nursery. Our son was immediately captivated and we began a new adventure in gardening.
Plants that prey on animals are called carnivorous (meat-eating) plants. They are not only nature's great oddity, they are unique in their nutrient-gathering abilities for survival. Learning about them and keeping them in our home is becoming a great science project for the whole family.
There are fifteen groups of these fascinating plants in existence with 500 species of plants within these groups. The plants we are learning about include Venus flytraps, bladderworts, sundews, butterworts, pitcher plants and the cobra lilly My son is most fascinated with the different ways in which each plant traps its pray. The Cobra Lily is of particular interest to him because of its clear cells on top of its pitcher-like trap. These cells work like little skylights. When its prey sees the spots it thinks there is a way out, when it tries to escape by flying to the light it crashes into the plants wall, falls into the water-filled trap.
Pitcher plant included in container arrangement.
The Croatan National Forest in North Carolina has the widest selection of Carnivorous plants in one area. Once you learn about these exotic plants you will start to see them in many different places. We just attended the Boston Flower and Garden Show and saw pitcher plants in a beautiful container arrangement.
There are many resources available to help in learning about theses captivating plants.