Herbs aquatic, in bogs, with fibrous roots, perennial, and with the leaves all radical, urn-shaped, or trumpet-shaped, and large flowers on scapes. Floral envelops 4 - 10. imbricated, the outer greenish, sepaloid. Stamens ∞, hypogynous. Carpels united into a several-celled capsule. (Figs. 174, 175, 17G.)
A curious order, chiefly remarkable for the leaves which are of that class called ascidia (§308). It embraces at present 3 genera and 6 or 8 species; the Heliamphora of Guiana, the Darlingtonia of California and
SARRACENIA, Tourn. Pitcher Plant. (Named in honor of Dr. Sarrazen of Quebec.) Calyx of 5 colored sepals, with 3 small bracts at base, persistent; corolla of 5, incurved, deciduous petals; stigmas 5, united into a large, peltate, persistent membrane covering the ovary and stamens; capsule 5-celled; seeds very numerous, albuminous.- Lvs. holding water, with a wing on the front side and a hood (lamina) at top. Scapes 1-flowered, fl. large, nodding.
Lamina inflected over the throat of the tube..............................
Nos. 1, 2.
Lamina erect or nearly so, throat open.*
* Leaves ventricous, never spotted with white...................................
* Leaves trumpet-shaped, very tall, often mottled and spotted above........................
1 S. psittacina Mx. Lvs. short, reclined, with a broad semi-ovate wing: fls. deep purple. - Bogs, Ga., Fla. to La. Lvs. 3' to 5' long when the plant is in flower, 6 - 10' when in fruit, slightly mottled with white on the back. The tube is small and nearly closed by the hooded lamina, which gives to the whole leaf the semblance of a parrot, whence the specific name. Scape 1f high. Fl. rather smaller than that of S. purpurea. March.
2 S. variolaris Mx. Lvs. elongated, nearly erect, mottled with white on the back, the wing lance-linear; fls. yellow. - Bogs in pine barrens, S. Car., Ga. (Feay and Pond) and Fla. Lvs. 12' to 18' high, remarkable for their white diaphanous spots near the top. Tube somewhat ventricous above, nearly enclosed by the strongly inflexed hood; wing 6" to 12" wide. Scapes shorter than lvs. Fls. about the size of the last. Mar., Apr.
3 S. purpurea L. Side-saddle Flower. Lvs. short, decumbent, inflated most near the middle; lamina broad cordate. - Bogs throughout Can. and U. S. This species is the most common, and on it the genus was founded. Lvs. 6 - 9' long. rosulate, evergreen, composed of a hollow, pitcher-form petiole, swelling in the middle, with a wing-like appendage extending the whole length inside, from 1/2 - 1' wide, and extended on the outside of the mouth into a lamina, covered above with reversed hairs. Their capacity when of ordinary size is about a wine glass, and generally, like the other species, they contain water with drowned insects. Scape 14 - 20' high, terete, smooth, supporting a single, large, purple, nodding flower, almost as curious in structure as the leaves. Jn.
β. heterophylla Torr. Scape rather shorter; sep. yellowish green; pet yellow. - Northampton, Mass. (R. M. Wright). Lvs. scarcely different. (S. heterophylla Eaton.)
4 S. Gronbvii. Trumpet-Leaf. Lvs. tall, straight, erect, tube gradually enlarged to the open throat, wing narrowly linear, lamina sub-erect, roundish, mucronate, contracted at base. - The largest species of the genu?, in swampy pine woods, Va. to Fla. and La. Lvs. often 3f in bight, and the scapes even taller; the lamina as broad as the open throat (2 - 3). Fls. very large (when extended 4 - 5' diam.) and of exactly the same structure in all the varieties.
a. flava. Fls. yellow; foliage yellowish green, with or without purplish veins (S. flava L. S. Catesbaei Ell.).
ß. alata. Fls. yellow? large; lvs. 1 - 2f high, with the tube somewhat ventricous above? throat contracted, wing conspicuous (1' broad). La. (Hale). - Intermediate between species 3 and 4; perhaps distinct. rubra. Fls. reddish purple, smaller than S. purpurea. Lvs. 1 - 2f high, with purple veins (S. rubra Walt.).
Drummondii. Fls. purple, very large; lvs. very tall (20 - 30), remarkably mottled above with purple veins and white, diaphanous interstices. (S. Drummondii Groom) Fla. (Chapman.)