The Carnivorous Plant FAQ Field Trip Report -

Western Australia in 2007

Return to the Trip Overview

Later in the arvo...I mean afternoon...we drove all of several whole kilometers to an elongated, shrubby, swampy area with a reticulated network of shallow pools.

The first plant that Allen showed us were these small rosettes. Now, if I were by myself, I would have simply written these things off as small specimens of Drosera rosulata. Dinkum! But to Allen's eye they were quite different. In fact, he says they are more closely related to Drosera tubaestylis, and their primary oddity is that they do not make the large clonal masses that D. tubaestylis usually creates. I have only seen D. tubaestylis once, and it was being clonally proliferative, but I really can't comment on what it typically does or doesn't do.

To prove his point, Allen made a lateral cross-section of a single leaf to show its raised midrib (the midrib on Drosera rosulata is sunken), but it didn't really show the character well. Allen shrugged and we both laughed--sometimes plants don't cooperate, and I was comforted to see that even Allen Lowrie can get confused by Australian carnivorous plants. Maybe the plant was crook.

If you want to ponder this plant more, here is another image of it. Drosera rosulata? D. tubaestylis? Allen called it D. aff. tubaestylis, which works for me.

Crikey! Looking at this image I can see that there are tiny green leaves scattered in the moss and mud which sure as hell look like some kind of Utricularia. See the little spathulate leaves at the 3:00 and 7:30 o'clock positions around the Drosera? Maybe even a trio of leaves emerging from between the Drosera leaves, just above the center of the rosette. I can't believe I didn't notice these when I was at the site!

Crap. Of course, out of flower any hopes of identification would have been unrealistic. But crap, crap, crap, even so.

P.S. Allen Lowrie has since contacted me with words of assurance, that those little tiny leaves are just from bulbous/cormous Stylidium, such as S. asteroidium, S. emarginatum, or S. petiolare. Maybe he's being nice and is just worried about my blood pressure.

back      forward

Revised: January 2010
©Barry Rice, 2005