27 Jul Flesh-eating plants: Wildflowers with an appetite for meat
“Meat eaters.” “Carnivorous.” “Flesh-eaters.” “Immobile predators.”
That’s a description of wildflowers and plants that gets my adrenalin racing. And quite frankly, these weird plants represent why we like to travel and wander – to experience new things. We don’t want to get stuck on canyon views, waterfalls and elk sightings.
The United States features 66 species of carnivorous plants, with approximately 35 in our home state of North Carolina.
According to experts, a plant needs five characteristics, or abilities, to be considered “carnivorous”: 1) to attract prey; 2) capture prey; 3) kill prey; 4) digest prey; 5) absorb the prey’s nutrients. As a reminder, we do our best to provide you with good information on our topics, but we’re not botanists – we are just wanderers who like to explore new “stuff’ in the Great Outdoors.
One day while exploring a national wildlife refuge in South Carolina, I met a naturalist in the field who pointed out a grouping of carnivorous plants. We could see them flowering across a pond, but I couldn’t reach them because I wasn’t geared up for a marshy hike. So I returned the following week and now I’m hooked on meat-eating plants. They’re fascinating.
The rest of this article showcases some of the photos I took while nerding-out in swamps, bogs and marshes in search of carnivorous plants. All of these sightings took place in mid-April to late May in two main areas: the Green Swamp Preserve, NC and Sandhills National Wildlife Refuge, SC. We at Wandering Rose Travels hope you find these plants as interesting as we do.