Re: Lighting error!!

Andrew Flostrand (
Wed, 17 May 1995 16:25:56 -0700

>Although I don't have any experience with Cephalotus, I have observed
>Sarracenia purpurea pitchers in northern U.S. and Canadian bogs showing
>similar color changes. Plants growing on open areas in full sun (no real
>shade at all) are very deep red and generally have many, small pitchers.
>Nearby plants growing in dense shade under tamaracks or black spruces have
>very large entirely green pitchers. I'm not aware of any formal studies on
>this phenomenon, but my guess is that the increased production of the red
>anthocyanin pigments may be a strategy for protecting against high light
>levels. I don't have an explanation for the change in plant morphology
>(pitcher size and number) though. Any guesses?

I can certainly attest to this phenomenon. I have two of these plants of
different ages which last year were raised in full bright sun, they formed
a tight rosette of deep purple pitchers. This year they are in a window
where they get direct sun but not near as much. Other factors are pretty
much the same. (warmer at night)
The pitchers are easily 3 times the size, grow at an insane rate but are
green except for varagation in what would be the lid. If you want REALLY
big Purpureas, reduce the light. I'm wondering what sort of shock the
plants would suffer if I took them now and gave them the high sun they had
last year.

I've also noticed that my N. Maxima is only developing pitchers on the
tentrils which a) have wrapped themselves around another support and B) are
in shade. Is this co-incidence or do the plants 'decide' where to grow
their pitchers after detecting these conditions?

-  Andrew Flostrand                      <>
   Tall Skinny Guy with a Screwdriver   Tel (604) 291-4397
   Faculty of Business Administration   Fax (604) 291-4920
   Simon Fraser University
   Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada, V5A 1S6


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