Sarracenia purpurea in Wareham, England


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Dear members of the CPUK forum,

Following on from Andy Smith's post a few weeks ago about the S. purpurea at Wareham forest, Dorest, I thought I'd shave my pics too!

It is so strange seeing Sarracenia growing naturalized in the UK. They really do grow quite prolofically which shows why they should not be introduced, no matter how beautiful they may look. They are non-native and could easily become out of control. These plants have apparently been there for many years, although I have no idea when exactly they were introduced. Over the last few years, the population has increased very fast.

The bog at Wareham is interesting though and I have watched it for a few years.

Hope you like the photos - more at http://www.redfernnaturalhistory.com/gallery

My very best regards to you all,

Stew

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Sarracenia purpurea

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Sarracenia purpurea

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Sarracenia purpurea

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Sarracenia purpurea

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Sarracenia purpurea

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Sarracenia purpurea

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Sarracenia purpurea

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Sarracenia purpurea

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Drosera intermedia

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Drosera intermedia

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Drosera intermedia

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Great pics Stewart, love the gallery on the website too :smile: I agree, its definitely strange seeing sarras growing here......... though they do look rather happy there!!

Heather

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They really do grow quite prolofically which shows why they should not be introduced,

Not just a case of shouldn't be introduced, it is actually illegal to introduce ANY non-native species (plant or animal) into the wild in this country.

Having said that, I will have to take a look some time.

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Stewart, Andy never answered my question.

Did the powers that be weedkiller all the purps at that site,when i was down in 2000 i'm sure you both said they'd killed them all.

Did they miss some or have they regrown from seed?

Ada.

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Glad you liked the pics!

> Not just a case of shouldn't be introduced, it

> is actually illegal to introduce ANY non-native

> species (plant or animal) into the wild in this

> country.

Absolutely right - I completely agree with you Phil. As beautiful as Sarracenia are, really they can get out of control and should not be introduced.

> Did the powers that be weedkiller all the purps

> at that site,when i was down in 2000 i'm sure

> you both said they'd killed them all. Did they

> miss some or have they regrown from seed?

Yep the large plants were sprayed. This was four years ago or so. There were seven massive clumps that evidently had grown there for quite some time. These were sprayed and were killed stone dead.

But there were small plants that were missed (hundreds) and also countless seeds lying dormant in the soil. That is the explanation for the plants I photographed recently.

I went back 4 years ago and saw the dead clumps. The rest were very small. Obviously the population has grown rapidly since and flowered prolifically as there are many seedlings now too.

This bog is extremely isolated, so this population will never come to dominate the south of England, but still it shows how these plants should stay in the greenhouse and not be naturalized.

I am very happy to share the location if anyone wants to go and see it for theirselves (please just email me).

It is sadly ironic how here we have too many Sarracenia in this small wetland while at the same time so much habitat is being destroyed in North America.

Wouldn't it be wonderful if a permit could be acquired to sent these plants to help reclaim and re-establish boglands in Canada? To actively help with repopulating wild stocks. I guess though the permits would be extremely difficult. And there is the question of mixing gene pools. But it would be a nice idea at least in theory - any thoughts from anyone?

Anyway my very best regards to you all

Stewart

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I think the consensus is perhaps that all foreign plants are as bad as each other, and grouped together as being invasive or overwhelming. I'm sure not all alien imports are like Japanese Knot Weed.

I'm sure there's a place for certain species, if they've been there for decades, as long as they are observed. I'm not sure how purpurea could really become out of control. What's the alternative to them being there - an empty bit of bog?

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What's the alternative to them being there - an empty bit of bog?

Perhaps the species that were there originally and no doubt still inhabit the bog?

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It is sadly ironic how here we have too many Sarracenia in this small wetland while at the same time so much habitat is being destroyed in North America.

Well isn't that a good argument for these purps to remain where they are? :thumbsup: I know that purps have been 'naturalised' (is that the word?) in Ireland and Switzerland? (somewhere else in Europe), and that is a good thing since their 'natural' habitat in the US is decreasing all it would take would be a freak summer/winter or a viral/fungal infection and the only ones left would be the ones in greenhouses. These purps aren't harming any other wildlife other than the odd fly or mosquito that ends up as prey. I know these have been illegally introduced into this bog, but if they are monitored and controlled then they would prove useful, as Stew said for re-populating sites in the US.

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Perhaps the species that were there originally and no doubt still inhabit the bog?

That would imply the bog would otherwise be a carpet of drosera, or other species, Sean.

Without those purps thould would just be a continuation of grass.

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Exactly. The grasses, sedges, rushes and other herbs are equally as important as any of the native CP species present- and much more so that an exotic species. To me it seemed as though you were saying that other native species are not as important (be they grasses, etc.) as the Sarracenia.

Edited by Sean Spence
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What kind of other carnivorous plants and none carnivorous are growing there? If there are rare species being replaced by those Sarracenias it makes sence to take them out. Would be better to do it by hand then with chemical stuff. But if they are n,t doing any harm to the native stuff you could leave some of them. As long as they are not becoming a pest. Here in the Netherlands Aldrovanda from Poland and Hungary grows very well in de Haak near Nieuwkoop. It grows in some bogpools with 3 species of Utricularia. The owner of the area wants to remove all Aldrovanda because they see it as an exotic invader but its not behaving like a pest anyway. Well it was found wild 600 km from that location in Germany. Now extinct there. Aldrovanda is listed as a highly endangered red list species here in Europe. So getting rid of a realy exotic species from another continent like Sarracenia is logical but Aldrovanda is another matter.

If its illigal introducing non native plants into nature then they should stop planting all those lovely coniferplantations and exotic treeplantations! Here in the low countries you see a lot of Larix, Pseudotsuga and Quercus rubra seeding itself everywhere in the surrounding forest replacing the native species. The Hoge Veluwe consist for large parts of a mixt forest of native and alien species. Guess who the public would react when all those non native species where removed. Not be amused probably.

Some exotic species are even beneficiel for native species like Buddleja davidii for butterflies. So to get rid of everything which is exotic...

Alexander

I'm not saying they're unimportant, I'm just sceptical about the physical displacement of the other species in this instance and whether other species are suffering from the presence of the purps.
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Interesting topic, which I've wrestled myself on several levels! I do concur with maintaining the purity of a pristine natural habitat, even introducing species from another gene pool/population is wrong; and this has happened in Borneo where seeds of N. lowii were collected in Murid, Trus-madi and Mulu and released in Kinabalu in efforts to restore the species' population; and is not uncommon elsewhere.

Over the years, I also have heard accounts of S. purpurea and even S. flava naturalized in parts of Ireland (even forming hybrid swarms) and other American CPs (VFTs, and even Darlingtonia) gone feral in various parts of Europe. As for Aldrovanda, having naturalized the Japanese strain in a local, privately owned site, I can see how fast they grow, and once they anchor into a suitable habitat, they are next to impossible to remove without destroying the entire site. This seems a bit strange as it's rapidly going extinct in its few remaining natural locales, but natural succession and development do take a heavy toll.

I hear of one account where a retired botany professor had several non-native CPs growing in a sphagnum bog on his property in a European countryside, which is legal, (just like growing any other non-native garden plants on your property), but as his health began to fail, due to problems with aging, he was less able to keep those plants in check, and subsequently, they went feral, and became part of the general landscape of the entire bog area; who knows how far these plants have spread over the years?

Similarly, here in the USA, during the earlier parts of the 1900's The Army Corps of Engineers build thousands of dams for hydroelectric power and recreational purposes, which destroyed countless bogs with their native orchids, ferns and CPs. There was a loose and informal relationship with several universities and amateur naturalists including developers, who would make efforts to relocate some of these plants into newly cleared lands due to strip logging in the turpentine and lumber industry, where the newly cleared forests were again restored to open bogs, replete with the spontaneous appearance of sphagnum, and other mosses. What would YOU do, if you knew of a site that was about to become a large lake, which contained millions of S. purpurea, orchids, ferns and other unique plants, that was about to be destroyed forever, and also knew of a newly cleared, deforested area bog which lacked these plants, only a few hours driving distance away?

I found this out myself in researching a few S. purpurea sites in Pa., that seemed to have plants that were more typical of the southern varieties than the more typical attributes that I normally find here in the northeast corridor, from the New Jersey Pine Barrens, all the way north through NY, Ma, and even into Nova Scotia. Unfortunately, those efforts of relocating doomed bog plants had very little or no documentation, due to the dubious but well intentioned conservationism concerns.

As for the S. purpurea in Europe, it is unlikely that they would be allowed back into the USA for fear of introducing non-native plants and mosses, possibly even parasites, (such as mites and nematodes) and contaminating existing gene pools. The best that my come out of this situation, is to hold permits for authorized collection of these plants, and allow a select few to pull them out of these sites. It seems a far less evil than to spray the area with herbicides.

- Rich

Edited by rsivertsen
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