Family, Pitcher - plant. Color, deep, dull purple, with a prominent, greenish yellow style. Sepals, 5, colored, with 3 bractlets underneath. Petals, 5, arched, broad above, narrow below, fiddle-shape. Stamens, numerous. Flowers, single, nodding on scapes about 1 foot tall. A large, round ovary in the middle of the flower is tipped with a greenish yellow style, expanded into a 5-rayed, umbrella-shaped body, terminating in hooked stigmas. Leaves, from the root, hollow, pitcher-shaped, hooded, striped with purple. They hold water, in which insects are drowned. Bristles pointing downward on the inner surface prevent an insect which has fallen in from escaping. June.
This plant is carnivorous, the drowned insects being appropriated as food. I have found the pitcher-plant in great numbers, from the most tiny to very large, in marshy land by the side of railroads, generally with many remains of drowned insects in the leaf-cups. Taken up by the roots and placed in water, it makes a veranda ornament that will keep fresh a long time. In peat-bogs, along the shore, to Florida and Kentucky, also in the Lake region.
In Virginia and southward a larger pitcher-plant is found, with leaves sometimes 3 feet long. It is called trumpets (Sar-raccnia flava), with a large, drooping, yellow flower. The
Darlingtonia of California is the only other member of this order in the United States.