Barry Rice

- a scientist in love with the Earth and stars -

Appearances and shows

18 June 2011: BACPS, Judge (Oakland, California).
25 March 2011: Natural History Museum, Murderous vegetables (Rocklin, California).
26 February 2011: Jepson Herbarium, Plants that Hunt (Berkeley, California).
10 April 2010: BACPS, Update on California CP fun (Oakland, California).
27 June 2009: Davis Botanical Society, Field trip leader (Butterfly Valley, California).
14 May 2009: Davis Botanical Society, Speaker (Davis, California).
24 Jan 2009: BACPS, Panelist (Sebastapol, California).
16 Aug 2008: BACPS, Judge (Oakland, California).
19 Jul 2008: Filoli Center: (Woodside, California).
9 Jan 2008: North Coast California Native Plant Society (Arcata, California).
16 Nov 2007: Sierra College (Rocklin, California).
19 Oct 2007: St. Louis Carnivorous Plant Society (St. Louis, Missouri).
4 May--4 Nov 2007: CHOMP! Conservatory of Flowers (San Francisco, California).
21 Apr 2007: North Carolina Botanical Garden (Chapel Hill, North Carolina)

"Monster Plants: Meat Eaters, Real Stinkers, and Other Leafy Oddities"
(ISBN 978-0-545-20326-5; Scholastic)

Don't tell me that you think that plants are boring things, good only for eating and making a lawn! The plant world is filled with many bizarre denizens such as meat eaters, parasites, creepy things that mimic dead flesh, and deceitfully tricky critters. Read this book and you'll see that being a plant can be very cool--very cool indeed!

To learn more about this book, or things that I'm up to, take a look at my plant blog--don't forget to say hello while you're there: Monster Plants, Monster Life!

If you want to buy a copy of Monster Plants, you have to buy it through Book Clubs:

If you are not in a school (perhaps you are a fanatical adult carnivorous plant grower) and you want a copy of the book, you can try Scholastic's customer service ( and see if that gets you anywhere.

"Growing Carnivorous Plants"
(ISBN 0881928070; Timber Press)

Carnivorous plants attract, capture, kill, and digest animals and protozoans. More than 640 plant species from more than a dozen genera are carnivorous. I have written a book that treats every plant known to be carnivorous, those which may be carnivorous, and even a few more.

No doubt, there are other books on carnivorous plants, so why did I write one of my own? I did so to bring my perspective to the world of carnivorous plants---that of a conservationist, a geeky horticulturist, and a photographer.

Because of the oddities of the publishing world, there are three different versions of the book; they differ only in the cover---the contents are the same. In the USA and UK it is published by Timber Press under the name "Growing Carnivorous Plants". Meanwhile in Australia it is published by Reader's Digest, and in South Africa by Briza---both these publishers are calling the book "The Complete Growers's Guide to Carnivorous Plants." You can click the thumbnails below to see a closer view of the book covers.

How you can buy a copy of Growing Carnivorous Plants!
It's a great book, with more than 300 images (mostly color photographs but also a few newly commissioned pieces of artwork), so of course you must absolutely buy it this very instant. There are several ways you can buy copies. I'm a big fan of having autographed copies of books---so I have ways of your getting autographed copies if you want them. And...well...frankly, we all know that an autographed copy of a book is more valuable in resale!

Option 1: You can get autographed copies of my book from the world famous carnivorous plant nursery, California Carnivores, which is owned and operated by Peter D'Amato, master horticulturist and author of his own great book (The Savage Garden). I live a few hours from California Carnivores, and stop by from time to time to autograph the copies in Peter's inventory.

Option 2: The Timber Press version can be bought from the major vendors, i.e., Barnes & Noble, Timber& Press, and so on. Some of these companies offer big discounts. I will happily sign any book if we meet face to face.

Book updates and omissions
Alas, because of space restraints, I was unable to include in the book all the text and photographs I would have liked to. So I have created this web page to link to additional material related to the book. Enjoy!

Online plant suppliers
I encourage all plant enthusiasts to support only nurseries that do not field collect their stock. This link lists suppliers who agree with a basic conservation statement.
Carnivorous Plant Societies
A web directory of carnivorous plant societies you should join; join at least the International Carnivorous Plant Society and one regional society!
The Endangered Species Act (ESA) and you
What every USA horticulturist should know about the ESA, which applies to those growing Sarracenia alabamensis subsp. alabamensis, S. jonesii, S. oreophila, and Pinguicula ionantha.
Advanced terrarium building
A complete guide to terrarium building--a much more detailed treatment than could fit in my book.
The St. Louis Declaration on Invasive Plant Species
In December 2001 there was held a meeting with a broad consortium of those involved in horticulture, including large nurseries, botanical gardens, the gardening public, etc. These participants drafted and adopted a set of voluntary "Codes of Conduct" designed as a first step in preventing the spread of invasive species. Learn what you should do to contribute to the support of these voluntary codes.
Basic tissue culture techniques
Information on tissue culture that was beyond the scope of the book, but essential for those itching to try some laboratory techniques at home.
Constructing a Darlingtonia cooling box
Guidance on how to build a cooling box for this challenging plant, as pioneered by intrepid Japanese horticulturists.
Citation list
A detailed list of the citations that were taken out of the book, to make it more accessible to the public.
Utricularia deviations from Taylor
A minor excision from my text was a list of differences between my Utricularia treatment and Taylor (1989). Here it is, for your edification.
Book Corrections and updates
For a book as complicated as this, there are surprisingly few errors in the final work. However, I have listed all these corrections in the document linked above so the perfectionist can note them. For my current list of carnivorous plant species, refer to my FAQ.
A round of thanks!
Once again, I would like to thank all those who took time to review chapters, provide photographs, or provide some other kind of support and help for this book: Lubomir Adamec, Paul Berry, Beth Bockoven, Marj Boyer, John Brittnacher, Tom Cahill, Jost Casper, Charles Clarke, Peter D'Amato, Doug Darnowski, Ron Determann, Jan Flisek, Robert Gibson, Madeleine Groves, John Hummer, Laurent Legendre, Hongqi Li, Allen Lowrie, Phill Mann, Stewart MacPherson, Tim Metcalf, Eric Partrat, Kamil Pasek, John Randall, Fernando Rivadavia, Hawkeye Rondeau, Elizabeth Salvia, Ernesto Sandoval, Jan Schlauer, Don Schnell, Este Stifel, Miloslav Studnicka, Isao Takai, Sebastian Vieira, Henning von Schmeling, Doug Walker, Rick Walker, and Bob Ziemer.


August 2015