Alphabetical Plant Listing

Sarracenia purpurea (Purple Pitcher Plant)

Pitcher Plant, Adam's Cup, Carrion Flower, Dumb Watches, False Foxglove, Fever Cup, Fly Trap, Huntsman's Cup, Huntsman's Horn, Indian Cup, Indian Tea Kettle, Meadow Cup, Purple Sidesaddle Flower, St Jacob's Dipper, St John's Dipper, Trumpet Leaf, Whip-Poor-Will's Boots, Whip-Poor-Will's Shoes


Extremely cold-hardy, Sarracenia purpurea (Purple Pitcher Plant) is a carnivorous perennial prized for its evergreen, semi-erect, squat, green pitchers, up to 12 in. long (30 cm), flushed and veined burgundy-red. Unlike in erect pitcher plants, the lid does not shield the pitcher opening. It is erect, with a pair of lateral wings on each side. In spring, purple-red flowers, 2 in. across (5 cm), rise atop leafless stalks well above the pitchers. While Sarracenia pitchers usually live for a year, the pitchers of Sarracenia purpurea tend to survive for two years unless they are damaged by fire or excessively cold conditions. Pitcher Plant is very effective at trapping and killing insects. Lured by the attractive leaf color, insects that land on the lids get paralyzed by the nectar. They fall down into a digestive fluid at the bottom of the pitcher where they will decompose and nutrients get absorbed. This plant is best grown in the consistently moist soils of a bog garden or in containers. It is a great addition to the acid water garden.

  • Grows up to 10-12 in. tall (25-30 cm) and 12-16 in. wide (30-40 cm).
  • Thrives in full sun to partial shade in consistently moist, acid soil. Irrigate with lime-free water and do not fertilize plantings. Shelter from hot sun.
  • Generally disease free. Keep an eye out for scale insects, mealybugs, aphids and tortrix moth.
  • Propagate by seed or by division.
  • Native to Canada, USA.

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Requirements

Hardiness 3 – 9
Heat Zones 1 – 9
Plant Type Perennials
Plant Family Sarracenia - Pitcher Plants
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early,Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Winter
Height 10" – 1' (25cm – 30cm)
Spread 1' – 2' (30cm – 60cm)
Spacing 12" – 16" (30cm – 40cm)
Water Needs Average, High
Maintenance High
Soil Type Loam
Soil pH Acid
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Poorly Drained
Characteristics Showy, Evergreen
Native Plants United States, California, Midwest, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Wisconsin, Northeast, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Southeast, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia
Tolerance Wet Soil
Garden Uses Bog Gardens, Patio and Containers, Ponds and Streams, Rain Gardens

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 By Jeanette Teare, Shutterstock

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 3 – 9
Heat Zones 1 – 9
Plant Type Perennials
Plant Family Sarracenia - Pitcher Plants
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early,Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Winter
Height 10" – 1' (25cm – 30cm)
Spread 1' – 2' (30cm – 60cm)
Spacing 12" – 16" (30cm – 40cm)
Water Needs Average, High
Maintenance High
Soil Type Loam
Soil pH Acid
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Poorly Drained
Characteristics Showy, Evergreen
Native Plants United States, California, Midwest, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Wisconsin, Northeast, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Southeast, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia
Tolerance Wet Soil
Garden Uses Bog Gardens, Patio and Containers, Ponds and Streams, Rain Gardens

Guides with Sarracenia - Pitcher Plants

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