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Pinguicula moranensis (Butterwort)

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Scientific Name

Pinguicula moranensis Kunth

Common Names

Butterwort

Synonyms

Pinguicula moranensis var. moranensis, Pinguicula bakeriana, Pinguicula caudata, Pinguicula flos-mulionis,
Pinguicula potosiensis, Pinguicula rectifolia, Pinguicula rosei, Pinguicula sodalium

Scientific Classification

Family: Lentibulariaceae
Genus: Pinguicula

Description

Pinguicula moranensis is a perennial rosette-forming insectivorous herb. A species of butterwort, it forms summer rosettes of flat, succulent leaves up to 4 inches (10 cm) long, which are covered in mucilaginous (sticky) glands that attract, trap, and digest arthropod prey. In the winter the plant forms a non-carnivorous rosette of small, fleshy leaves that conserves energy while food and moisture supplies are low. Single pink, purple, or violet flowers appear twice a year on upright stalks up to 10 inches (25 cm) long.

Photo via flickr.com

How to Grow and Care

You can grow Butterwort plants outside in temperate to warm zones or in a pot as annuals. In USDA zones 10 and 11, the plants will persist as perennials and grow new rosettes, multiplying the plant's diminutive size. The best soil for container plants is a mix of sphagnum moss with equal parts vermiculite or sand. Plants situated outdoors will do best in moist soil or even near water. Butterworts thrive in sun to partial shade. The plants must never dry out, though potted plants should also have good drainage. They must experience a dormancy period to regrow and bloom each spring. Cut back the dead leaves in late winter or early spring to encourage the new growth.

The Butterwort plant is fairly self sufficient. It should not be grown indoors unless you have a gnat problem, but outside it can gather its own food. The plant attracts tiny insects, which get stuck in the slimy, slick coating on the leaves. Their struggle encourages the release of a digestive enzyme. Provided the plant is in correct light, temperature and moist conditions, the little Butterwort will thrive… – See more at: How to Grow and Care for Butterwort.

Origin

Native to Mexico and Guatemala.

Links

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