Sarracenia flava 101 Part 1

bogSo I was sitting out in my back yard today, enjoying my plants.  I can’t tell you how much better it is growing them out in the open where people can enjoy them versus all cooped up in a greenhouse.   In the greenhouse they were out of site out of mind, here, they’re in your face!!! Love it!

Anyway, as I was looking over the plants, I noticed that for the first time in years, I was able to identify all the Sarracenia forms.  With those tree’s gone (again thank you rear neighbor), the increase light levels has done wonders for coloration.  I got to thinking… that would be a neat idea for a post…  a visual guide to the color forms of S. flava.

So today… part 1

Sarracenia flava var maxima

This variant has completely green/yellow leaves with no red veins.  The more sun you give them, the more yellow the leaves look.  The only red pigment is in the growth point and the very small newly emerging leaves, otherwise the leaves are devoid of red pigment.

This would be a good time to mention Sarracenia flava var viridescens. This form is completely green and free of all red pigment.  So the only way to tell it from the var maxima is to look at the growth point. If the growing point has any red, its not var viridescens.  The photo below is actually a var maxima specimen from a long extinct site in Virginia.



S. flava var flava

This is the most common variant in the wild. Its leaves are finely veined from lid to base. The photo below is a var flava that originated from a now extinct site in Virginia. In cultivation its been referred to as  “Gary’s Church”. By far my favorite var flava specimen.



Sarracenia flava. var ornata

This variant is similar to var flava and can easily be confused with var flava.  For me, var ornata is very heavily veined.  The veins are much thicker and darker than the var flava sometimes the color spilling into the green of the leaves.  This one below hails from the florida panhandle where it is fairly common.



Sarracenia flava var cuprea

This form has a coppery color lid and sometimes upper pitcher.  The copper color can vary considerably, from a light coppery flush to a dark coppery color.  I’ve seen copper tops that have no other veining in the leaves, basically a var maxima with a copper lid, to very veined specimens with coppery lids.  Its the copper colored lid that distinguishes this form from the others.  The photo below is a North Carolina specimen.



That’s it for part 1…  part 2 to follow



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3 Responses to Sarracenia flava 101 Part 1

  1. Mary Jane Mazur says:

    Fantastic, you did it on the nail to speak. Describing the ” color” helped me to understand the plant better. Looking forward to section 2. Having seen them in the greenhouse vs outside, the outside definetly is the winner. Nothing beats the sunshine in all it’s glory.


  2. Lois M. Ochs says:

    Thanx for the most specific explanation of the flava species that i have ever read
    I had some trees trimmed that were to near to my house. Now when I come up the driveway, I can see a lot of Sars

  3. Mike Wang says:

    Your plants are looking very well this year Carl, great job! I’m shocked to see the color and vigor you can get all the way up there!

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