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Found 11 results

  1. Here's a bed of S. leucophylla Hurricane creek white from Baldwin Co, AL. The original site is about 100% altered and 99% destroyed. There aren't any outstanding clones left in the wild like we have in cultivation (well, there are nice ones still there but they don't compare), but there's still a relic patch of plants alive today, here's a link to the story: http://www.cpukforum.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=51000 There's still a bunch of traps have yet to open, so these plants are not at their fullest potential, but they're starting to look nice! Photos taken 8/29/16:
  2. I've always wanted to produce a gigantic field of leucophllas and have been attempting to do that forever, but haven't really been able to get anywhere. It just takes way too many plants, and you have to space them out much more than any other species (or so it seems) in order to get good fall traps. Well, now that I'm in this new location, space isn't much of a limitation, so the first attempt to make a field of leucos was made. Turns out, it's more like 2 rows of leucos than a field, but good enough! Technically speaking, this isn't one population, but multiple populations from various localities. There's albas, pinks, reds, regulars, and weirdos all up in the mix. These looked a bit ratty all summer long because there were tons of spring traps that had fallen over and turned brown, but I spent all weekend cleaning them up and now they look pretty nice! Interestingly enough, there are some late summer traps, but the main fall traps haven't yet shot out yet, so these will likely become even more impressive prolly in the next month or so. The growth points on many plants are showing fall traps, but a few are still spitting out phyllodia. Here's some pics, photos taken 8/14/16: Here you can see some of the bigger "fall traps" being produced. They're sparse at this time of year, and usually we don't see these traps until September at the earliest here in Northern California: I took a couple of "face" shots from the population, and they'll probably look more impressive in a few weeks. These late summer traps are generally a lot more dull looking, but still interesting enough to post: One of the sneakiest chameleons of them all, S. leucophylla var. alba Covington Co, AL. Sometimes, the fall traps look like regular leucophylla, but I finally caught this one looking quite white: a peculiar looking leucophylla from northern Baldwin Co, AL. Probably had some hybridizing in it's distant past: If the late summer trap on this S. leucophylla Baldwin Co, AL looks like this, can't wait to see the fall traps! Last year, this clone only produced phyllodia, but this year it has some strong looking growth emerging: I think this one is washington Co, AL: A typical trap from Eastern Alabama. These genotypes tend to produce both strong spring and fall pitchers here in Northern California, and are possibly more resilient to cooler grow season temps: This clone from Baldwin Co, AL had been pollinated, and I don't see any fall traps emerging regretfully. A lot of the times, when the plant focuses energy into seed production, it doesn't always have a spectacular fall show: Same trap as above: Random clone, no idea where it's from. Nice "asparagus" fall pitcher developing in the background: Now this is a washington Co, AL leuco: Yup, even my wife said this one was "cute" and she has the highest standards out of anyone I know:
  3. Not all leucophylla alba clones "interchange" between regular leucophylla and var. alba traps, but quite a few do. As a good example, take a look at this individual. Photos taken 8/4/16: In this first picture, notice the two very different looking traps connect to the same exact plant: perhaps this picture better shows the two traps connected to the same rhizome, the solid white one would be considered var. alba according to Stewy and Donnie Schnell, and the regular looking one would be merely called S. leucophylla....by Stewy and Donnie Schnell: 2 different looking traps, same plant! Closer pic, I would have never guessed this was an alba if that super white trap didn't pop out: And just for fun, we've seen something similar with Hurricane creek white, but the less white pitchers still look more alba-ish than the clone referenced above: http://icps.proboards.com/thread/5595
  4. I remember being in college and having a conversation with a fellow CP expert. He saw how "addicted" I was to Sarracenias, and he said that eventually, I'll probably get bored of them, and then move on and focus on something else. As the years went by, I always reflected on that conversation and thought, how can you get bored of Sarracenias? Within one species, there's as much diversity out there as you can imagine (sadly, there used to be even more than that until most of it was destroyed in the wild). The photos below really demonstrate why many of us will be hooked on pitcher plants till the day we die. There isn't just one S. leucophylla alba out there, but there are hundreds of thousands of individuals, and just like humans, each individual is special and unique. Even regular leucophyllas out there are bright white. Let's say that theoretically, one becomes bored because they've seen and grown 1000's of different clones of every species and variety. Well, then there's the path to hybridization,which probably takes at least 2-3 lifetimes to really explore the endless possibilities. In other words, a lifetime isn't enough time to really experience Sarracenias! all photos below were taken 9/10/13 in northern Baldwin Co, AL: S. leucophylla var. alba-check out how white the interior of the trap is: Another S. leucophylla var. alba, this time with nice red "netting" on the outside: A regular S. leucophylla with heavy "veining." S. leucophylla var. ornata? Shhhh, don't tell Stewart McPherson, hehe Just kidding: Love how the petiole or trap is skiny on the bottom and fat/symmetical at the top: Same clone, but view of the back. Look at how white this clone is! S. leucophylla var. (maybe alba?): A standard looking clump: Mildly pink lip-this clone will probably turn darker pink in the next few months: S. leucophylla var. alba-can you see how no one "var. alba" looks exactly the same? A shapely reddish-pink clone. These red and pink pigments probably come from historic interbreeding with S. rosea and/or S. "alabamensis" ssp. wherryi: Lots of white on this clone, with a beautiful contrasting red at the bottom. Nature is a work of art: Same clone, slightly different angle:
  5. This plant produced some very white traps this year. Photos taken 8/30/14, which is actually pretty early for outdoors in California. Normally, we don't have the best pitchers until late September/early October:
  6. There are perhaps only a handful or two of large populations of S. leucophylla left in the wild. The majority that still remain are either relic patches of a once giant field of plants, or volunteers in modified habitats (ie. man made drainage ditches). Many of the historically giant populations are now either destroyed, or if they haven't been touched whatsoever, they are now etiolated plants growing in thick, dense forests. Before people dominated the landscape and plowed or altered every square acre of land, fires would come in and burn up the forest, creating new habitats for Sarracenias to colonize. Today, those forest are mainly homes, structures, and farms where fire isn't permitted since it would damage people's property. It's surprising how short lived many of these sites are, especially during the more recent times. On the other hand, they're still there, and they've struggled to survive the face of human negligence. This site below only exists because a power company consistently clears the grasses every year or so to protect their electrical equipment. On the side of the road nearby, I had already seen signs of round-up (herbicide) use, and it's only a matter of time when they spray this field. One application of herbicide can ruin centuries of growth. If I had to bet, this site will be sprayed in the next few years once they realize the cost savings. As pessimistic as it may seem, this is the reality for many of these sites. We visited many historic sites that didn't have a single plant left due to annual herbicide applications. However, there are some remote sites like the one below that still exist today, so maybe...just maybe a few will stand the test of time. Enough doom and gloom talk, let's check out these beautiful fields! Here are some S. leucophylla in Washington Co, AL, photos taken 9/11/13. First couple of photos focus on the field itself-there were 3 large patches at this site: Plants here were as healthy as can be! There's nothing like a huge field of leucophyllas: There were also S. rubra wherryi and S. psittacina (and some giant psitts!) at this site as well, but the grass was really tall, and you could only see the leucos. Still very inspiring to see a patch this size, which is still relatively small compared to what used to exist: thousands of plants everywhere: Tons and tons of plants: Poor Axel Bostrom of California Carnivores stepped on a fire ant hill at this site, and the pain was so extreme, he had to go wait in the car. These hills were hidden deep in the grass, and were EVERYWHERE: More photos of individual plants coming soon. This site had some amazing diversity which we will explore in a little bit, so stay tuned!
  7. Unforunately, I don't have very good news about the sites in Washington Co, AL. Prior to visiting this area, I had heard that many of the amazing sites that used to exist in this area were recently destroyed due to a road widening project. It's really sad how little the local people know about the botanical paradise that grows literally in their backyard. I explained to the hotel owner that night that we were out to see carnivorous plants, and he had no idea they were even in the area! That same night, Damon showed a restaurant owner a picture of a S. leucophylla and asked them if they've ever seen this plant before or recognized it. While she did comment on how beautiful it was, surprisingly, she had never seen one, EVER! I was under the impression that this restaurant owner has been there for quite some time, as indicated by how well she knew all the of the other customers. The sad truth is this used to be one of the main hotspots for Sarracenias, and now they're so rare, local people don't even know they're there! Washington County, AL used to have vast acres upon acres of plants. Today, there are little relic patches here and there, and just like in Baldwin Co, AL, these sites have succumbed to tree farming and other agricultural activities....From our observations, one of the main reasons for their near extinction in this area is tree farming! To top it off, the use of round-up (an herbicide) was rampant in this area. Even in the middle of nowhere, road workers have figured out it's easier and faster to spray the weeds on the side of the road than it is to mow them! The reality is this area is quite impoverished, and local people are doing whatever they can to get by. Despite all the negative activities, I'm happy to report that plants in this area still exist as of 2013! They have endured all these years of being beaten up with chemicals and plows, and hopefully, some of these sites will continue to exist. Before we take a tour of the plants, ever wondered what a fire ant hill looks like? They're called fire ants because when they bite, they inject formic acid, which cause a sharp, hot sting! I don't know what it feels like, but ask Axel Bostrom of California Carnivores...he got bit to threads. Here's the mound before I kicked it over: And literally a second after being kicked over, there are 1000's of angry ants moving really fast, ready to bite. These mounds are EVERYWHERE in sarracenia habitats, and it's as horrifying as it looks: A nice pink lipped S. leucophylla filled with love bugs: Pretty much every single trap out there was loaded with love bugs: A neat greenish clone-notice how this population looks very different from the Baldwin Co, AL plants: more love bugs: Nice Lynx spider: I just love the way these washington Co, AL plants look: A little bouquet-notice the old, large pitcher, indicating nice spring/summer pitchers: Another nice plant: group shot: [ There were gigantic populations of S. leucophylla here, but unfortunately, they were growing in thick brush, and they looked like this. Without a burn or clearing, these will eventually perish: But on a brighter note (literally!), there were some amazing var. albas here: And to end the show, this S. leucophylla var. alba is one of the best that I saw out there!
  8. The original site where S. leucophylla hurricane creek white used to exist in the wild was plowed and turned into a pine tree plantation. While I never saw the original site before it was destroyed, I had heard it was a huge field filled with plants! The original site had many normal S. leucophyllas, but a few plants displayed the blinding white traps that we are fortunate enough to have preserved in cultivation prior to the site being destroyed. A lot of people probably are wondering, what does this site look like today, and is there anything left? Surprisingly, there is still a tiny little patch remaining to this day, but it is slowly being overgrown by the surrounding shrubs. Are there any super-white plants left? Sort of, but nothing like what we have in cultivation. 2 years ago when we first spotted this relic patch, there was a little opening in the shrubs (which were much shorter at the time) and you could walk in there and see quite a few plants. This little clearing had a decent amount of sunlight. As of 2013 (2 years later), that open patch is now filled with thick shrubs, and there's no way you can even attempt to walk in there! All of the plants that were once receiving decent light are now etiolated and shaded. Many only produced phyllodia. Will this patch survive in the long run? IF a fire comes through, or someone clears up the shrubs consistently, this relic site can potentially last a long time. However, the landowners clearly aren't interested in preserving these plants, and as is, the site will likely persist for a few more years at best. In the case of the S. rubra wherryi Chatom giant site, in 2004 (?), the population was in the same situation: they were heavily shaded by thick shrubs and struggling to survive. As of 2013, we didn't find a single Sarracenia in the original Chatom giant site. There were also gigantic S. psittacinas that used to grow there..these were also all gone. While I remain optimistic that the little hurricane creek patch may persist for a few more years, I remain skeptical that it will last through time. Photos of what remains of the original hurricane creek white site. This will likely be one of the last documented set of photos of the site before it disappears forever. It's damn hard to find, I'll tell you that much! Keep in mind, this used to be a field, but is now thick shrubs that eventually turn into a non-native forest (pine plantation) behind them: You used to be able to walk in here: Still, we did find an impressive hurricane creek white plant here and there: Most of them, however, looked like regular leucos, or relative white regular plants: They may be starving for light, but they sure aren't starving for insects! In two years, this will likely turn into thick brush: Actually, some beautiful and interesting plants are still alive: you can tell this is a relative of hurricane creek white: Decent hurricane creek white plant: The dark green and contrasting white is what makes hurricane creek white so unique. Most other populations don't have that characteristic:
  9. Before I write my own fieldtrip report on this site, I want to share with you all a fieldtrip report that I have from my files about this exact site. The notes dated all the way back to 1994 (I was in 7th grade at the time!), so when we decided to visit this site, I was a bit skeptical that there would be anything still alive, especially in light of what was seen back in 1994: "the bog was in much worse shape than it was when he was here last time. In the seepage areas of the Savannah flava typica, leucophylla, psittacina, tracyii, capillaris were found. I also found flava leuco hybrids. There were supposed to be pure red flava here, but [he] couldn't find them. Maybe they were dug up, who knows? We took photo and video. We stopped for a bite at a shleppy corner store. Got a good dinner for $3.99." Despite what was said about this site in 1994, there's good news: this bog is very healthy as of Sept. 2013, and the red flavas are still there! More on the red plants in another post...this report will focus on S. leucophylla. Notice the previous visitor mentioned "a seepage area." Again, this site is almost exactly like a Darlingtonia fen in the sense that the plants only grow within the seep, but you won't find a single plant outside of it. Think of these Florida "seeps" as a very slow moving creek, except it's pretty wide and filled with mucky peat. It's boggy and slushy when you walk through it. The seep is between two hills that have a gentle slope, and on each side of the hill is a savanna or grassland mixed with conifers This is another "hilly" site just like the ones in Okaloosa Co, FL, except the slopes are a lot more gentle here. These habitats are very different from the huge fields you see in Baldwin Co, AL, where the plants aren't in some mucky area, but rather grow in the middle of a flat field. Those habitats exist because there is ground water beneath them, so while the surface of the soil may seem relatively dry, there is plenty of water underneath (enough to support Crayfish!) Anyhow, check out this habitat! Photos were taken 9/10/13: It's hard to tell from the photo, but there is a gentle slope on both sides of this seep. Notice the plants in the middle: In the front of this area, there's an "oval" area where you can see leucos and flavas growing. This is the "top" of the bog, where water from uphill is slowly seeping into the wet areas. In the background, there's some thick, green shrubs-this turns into a "wanna-be" creek, where the bog continues to gently roll downhill. The boggy creek that continues gently down the slight hill is very thick with shrubs, but the Sarracenias grow in the middle of the creek: Another shot of the same spot: One more shot: The leucophyllas here were pretty white: Fresh pitcher opening up: some more bright white plants: As you can see, they're very healthy: Standard looking leuco: Beautiful plants-these are growing in the "creek" a bit downhill from the previous photos: Another shot:
  10. My friends Damon and Axel of California Carnivores and I had the opportunity to check out the "flava atropurpurea" site in Okaloosa Co, FL, and while most eyes are on the flavas, my eyes were on the leucos! Not much is heard about, spoken of, or known about gigantic leucophyllas out there, and two years back, we discovered a gigantic plant in Baldwin Co, AL. This year, after seeing 100's of 1000's of S. leucophylla plants in the wild, we happen to stumble upon one gigantic plant! It's tough to see just how big they are in the photographs, but I did my best to give you a sense of just how big these monsters get. One interesting detail about this site is that it's located in the hills. Who would have thought that sarracenia bogs were found in the middle of a hilly forest?! More details on that in future posts. While the photographs we took depict a beautiful, tranquil scene, I assure you this is an incredibly hostile environment! Temperatures were near the 100's that day, and we constantly had to go back to the car, turn on the AC, and recover every 2 hours or so. In a lot of places, the grass is so tall you can't see you feet. This habitat is perfect for many deadly and venomous snakes! Every step you take could be your last one, as their teeth are sharp enough to go through hiking shoes and rubber boots. HEat exhaustion is no joke, and we were constantly drenched in sweat. Hiking under such conditions can be dangerous if you don't pay attention to staying hydrated. It's nice to look back at the photographs in the safetly of your home! For your viewing pleasure, below are photos of S. leucophylla growing in the wild in Okaloosa Co, FL. Photos were taken 9/7/13 and 9/8/13: The giant S. leucophylla! Lynx spider and some love bugs on the giant pitcher: Another shot of the giant trap: Close up: Lynx spider with prey on the gigantic trap: Damon Collinsworth in situ with the gigantic plant: one of the rare circumstances where he isn't ruining the photo: Mike Wang in situ with the same gigantic plant: And now for some other clones at this site-many plants were very white: large clumps of the same clone were fairly common here, indicating a happy environment for these plants:
  11. The population of S. leucophylla from Covington Co, AL is rather amazing! There are deep red plants, bright white ones, and all sorts of different shapes and sizes. My favorite is the reddish plant with the blinding white tops...hard to beat that! This population seems to have been a lot bigger many years back, but again, I think it was hit by the prolonged drought we had two years ago, which really wiped out many plants. This site is very similar to Bob Hanrahan's property in the sense that it is a large open field that's on a gentle slope. At the top of the "hill" water seeps from below and keeps the area moist but not very water-logged. There's a "creek" that runs near the middle of the bog, and in this creek is a row of S. leucophyllas and many other native plants. It's really thick with vegetation in this very moist creek bed, so I didn't venture into it (snakes commonly hang out in thick brush). Speaking of snakes, we did find a dead one at this site, and it was pretty big! The site looks like it was burned at least a year ago, but it was starting to get pretty thick, and when you can't see your feet, it's a bit nerve wrecking, especially after knowing poisonous snakes are around there. Unfortunately, all around this site, there are farms and slash pine plantations. In fact, the adjacent parcel is a thick pine plantation. This location seems to be protected and managed by the forest service, so it will likely last in the long run. It's also seems large enough where to the point that the watershed can't be messed with. I did see seedlings here and there, which indicates the population is healthy and expanding. AS long as this site continues to be burned, it will stay healthy. Overview of the habitat shot. I was standing near the "top" of the hill in this photo, which is a forest of native pines. All photos taken 9/9/13: Some baby, native long leaf pines growing in the field: Here's Axel Bostrom with a fairly large, bright white S. leucophylla: A close up of the same plant: A slightly red clone: Some more stunning red plants: Another shot of the same clump: The highly coveted S. leucophylla hybrid that has some S. flava var. rugelii in it's genes. I just love these types of hybrids! Closer shot of the same plant: Sometimes I start wondering if Hurricane creek white is all that, but upon close comparisons, HCW is much brighter white: Notice there are veins on the outside of this S. leucophylla var. alba. The best HCW clones under optimal conditions do not have this venation. However, I wonder if the plant below doesn't have veins on the outside under different environmental conditions? Look at the shape on this one!!! Some more S. leucophylla var. albas growing in the shrubs: Wish I could have seen this one open: A nice healthy clump. This seems to be all one clone: There were so many S. leucophylla var. albas here: More photos to come!