Eric Schlosser (ESCHLOSS@urz-mail.urz.uni-heidelberg.de)
Tue, 8 Nov 1994 14:32:47 CET-1CST

I would like to introduce myself: My name is Eric Schlosser, I study
chemistry at the university of Heidelberg, Germany, which leaves me
little time for my favourite hobby CPs.
After some years with a few unhappy tries I successfully grow a
couple of CPs since about 1981. Right now I'm concentrating on
Sarracenia and Nepenthes, but I'm looking for epiphytic Utricularias
and Genlisea too. However, my favourite species is still the old VFT.
Any offers are welcome; I'm looking especially for seed of nice
varieties of Saracenia with named location (e.g.S.purp.ven.) and a
real all red VFT. Maybe I can offer something for exchange.
During the years my collection grew up to 350 different CPs, but only
one third of this number are different species and many of them still
I'm member of the British CPS since 1986, I think, (it still got the
best seed bank and system) and the German GFP since 1989.
I joined the e-mail discussion group this July, first silently
looking what kind of news is hopping around the data nets of the
world. Then I forgot to lock out when I was leaving for a great
vacation in SE Asia. Believe me it is hard work to look through 618
new mail messages (Keep writing like this!), but I don't regret it.
Otherwise I would have missed some most interesting correspondence
dealing with the genus Nepenthes in September.
I was also surprised what kind of advice Perry got for his trip. I
suppose he's now over the hills and far away, having a good time. So
for all those that are yet to see the Mekka of Nepenthes:

Don't be afraid of Mt.Kinabalu - every healthy person that can
use staircases can walk (in fact there is no climbing) to the top and
back within two days a n d see the plants without to hurry.
Physically (not necessarily mentally) fit persons may join the yearly
climbathon when heaps of runners try to make it to the summit AND
back in less than five hours and thirty minutes. You can see some
training everyday.
Normal people arrive at noon at the resting huts at 3000m altitude if
they started at 7 o'clock am. At three in the night next day you'll
stumble with many other tourists (around 40 when I was there) to Low's
peak at 4104m. It looks steep, but when you return at daylight you
will find it easy with good grippy rock to walk on, nevertheless use
the ropes that hang around for your security.
You will be back at the headquarters at noon - unless you're
interested in plants.
You'll have to take a guide if you want to go for the top. Many of
them wait in front of the Headquarter, so choose one that is
able to speak English. Most of them know good spots for Nepenthes and
will take you there. You can't miss N.tentaculata. There are plenty
of them along the way till 2500m. You'll certainly see N.villosa too.
They start to grow where N.tentaculata stops till almost to the huts.
It's not just another pitcher plant, but the best you can think of,
and it's not alone, but there are fields of it. You might also be
shown almost pure locations of N.x kinabaluensis just off the summit
trail (don't mistake it for N.villosa at first). If you bring some
extra energy, avoid the bus and walk from the power station to the
headquater. Beside saving RM 10.- you'll find N.fusca along the road
(if they've just cut them with the grass, you'll have to look out
Unfortunately there was a time when the park rangers didn't watch
out as hard as they do now and many interesting species were stolen.
You cannot see N.lowii and N.rajah along the way anymore and I don't
think N.burbidgea ever grew there (even if Mr.Cheers wrote it in his
new book). I still wonder who has all these big plants ???
But you can see a splendid N.lowii in the mountain garden of the park
as well as N.stenophylla, a bunch of N.rajah, some hybrids and other
plants you won't find along the summit trail.
It's well worth the trip because you can have both, the view and the
plants. Although you might be disappointed by the view (only maybe
two days in the year you might happen to see as far as to the
Philipines), usually clouds appear soon after sunrise, so don't stay
too long on the mountain, it tends to rain in the afternoon.
But you won't be disappointed by the mountain itself: The vegetation
changes all along the way, each zone has its unique atmosphere and
outstanding plants to offer.

So long. Actually I didn't want to write articles yet.

Best regards