Carnivorous Plant Information

Overview

Carnivorous plants are represented in over 12 genera and consist of over 630 different species. They are extremely varied and can be found on all continents except Antarctica.

Features

Carnivorous plants obtain the majority of their nutrients from the ingestion of living organisms, primarily insects. Each variety uses a different mechanism for trapping and digesting prey.

Types

The five kinds of carnivorous plants are categorized by the type of traps they possess for catching prey. These include pitfall traps, flypaper traps, snap traps, bladder traps and lobster traps.

Habitat

Carnivorous plants thrive in hot, humid locations with lots of water and insects, such as marshes, bogs and rain forests. They grow almost solely in poor, low-fertility soil, as the insects they ingest make up for the nutrient deficit.

Cultivation

Carnivorous plants can be easily grown in water gardens, terrariums and planters if given the proper care. The plants must be fed small insects every few months as opposed to being fertilized. Light requirements range from full sun to full shade, depending on the species.

Misconceptions

Carnivorous plants are often exaggerated as large, man-eating monsters in the media. However, few carnivorous plants even grow large enough to consume small amphibians and there are no recorded incidents of humans being consumed.

References

  • How do Carnivorous Plants Kill?
  • John Green's Carnivorous Plants
  • Carnivorous Plants
Keywords: carnivorous plants, pitfall traps, bladder traps

About this Author

Willow Sidhe is a freelance writer living in the beautiful Hot Springs, AR. She is a certified aromatherapist with a background in herbalism. She has extensive experience gardening, with a specialty in indoor plants and herbs. Sidhe's work has been published on numerous Web sites, including Gardenguides.com.