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Sarracenia purpurea

purple pitcherplant add to wishlist

Plant types and subtypes: Perennials

Light Requirements: sun, part-sun

Water Use: high

Soil Moisture: wet

Soil Description: acid, poor

Height: 6"-12"

Bloom Time: May, June, July, August

Bloom Color: red, purple

Leaf Color: green, purple, multi-color

Hardiness Zone: 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

Additional Tags: bog plant, colonizing, naturalizing, ornamental foliage, pond margin plant, swamp plant, wetland plant

Sarracenia purpurea (common pitcherplant)1
  • Sarracenia purpurea (common pitcherplant)1
  • Sarracenia purpurea (common pitcherplant)1
  • Sarracenia purpurea (common pitcherplant)1
  • Sarracenia purpurea (common pitcherplant)1

Pricing & Availability

Description

Sarracenia purpurea

Also known as:

purple pitcherplant

,

common pitcherplant

,

pitcherplant

,

decumbent pitcher plant

,

Northern pitcher plant

Scientific Synonyms:

Description

Sarracenia purpurea is the most common of the pitcher plants. The purple-veined leaves are curled and fused to form the pitcher which traps insects and other small organisms. The veined, frilly hood, or lid, of the purple pitcherplant, is erect and does not cover the opening of the pitcher. In spring, large, nodding, reddish-purple flowers bloom on erect stalks, rising to 12 inches from the center of the basal leaf rosette. The darker sepals are pointed, the petals are lighter in color and more rounded.

Cultivation

This conspicuous plant needs the acidic, nutrient poor muck of wetlands and bogs, and full to part-sun. At no time should this plant's environment be allowed to dry out, yet care should be taken to ensure that the crown is not submerged for prolonged periods of time. In most gardens creating a "mini bog" in non-draining plastic containers might be the best method to cultivate pitcherplants. Potting medium should consist of peat, vermiculite, perlite and sand. Traditional potting mixes or the use of fertilizers may kill the plant. This is a hardy species that can be found as far north as the Arctic circle. It may be considered evergreen in warmer climates. Bloom times vary greatly due to its extensive native range; May through August. Zones 2-9

Propagation

Propagate by division. Pitcherplants may be propagated from seed, but this is a difficult process and new plants may take 4 to 5 years to reach maturity.

Additional Notes

Insects and other small organisms drown in the plant's pitcher. Their soft parts are digested with the help of enzymes and bacteria. Carnivorous plants developed this ability to compensate for the nutrient poor environment in which they grow. Strict adherence to growing requirements must be followed for this plant to thrive.

Native Range & Classification

Recorded County Distribution: USDA data

Native Range:
AL, CA, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, IL, IN, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MS, NC, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, RI, SC, TN, VA, VT, WA, WI, WV

USDA Endangered Status:

  • Endangered: GA, IL
  • Exploitably Vulnerable: NY
  • Threatened: FL, MD, MI

Classification

Kingdom Plantae Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Magnoliopsida Dicotyledons
Subclass Dilleniidae
Order Nepenthales
Family Sarraceniaceae Pitcher-plant family
Genus Sarracenia pitcherplant
Species Sarracenia purpurea purple pitcherplant