The Carnivorous Plant FAQ Field Trip Report -

Darlingtonia observed being pollinated, 2006

The Trip:
Most Darlingtonia sites occur within a short trip of the coast in northern California and Oregon. A smaller number of sites occur well inland, and a very few sites occur in the Sierra Nevada mountain range. For the last nine or so years, I have been studying the plants at a site in Nevada County, the southern-most site of this plant still in existence. This site is privately owned, however the owners kindly do not object to my continued studies of their site. (Over the years, I have developed a good relationship with the owners of this Darlingtonia bog, and the nonprofit organization that owns a conservation easement on the property.)

My preference would be to perform small manipulative experiments at the site every year. Unfortunately, my studies have uninterrupted because a careless rancher on a distant grazing site lets his cattle illegally trespass into this property and damage the delicate wetlands. One year they managed to eat my entire experiment...but that is a different story.

This year, I was encouraged by the fact that the cattle had not trashed the site the previous year. It appears that the Tahoe National Forest Service Staff were actually taking their duties seriously and were showing concerns that their permittee rancher was derelict in his actions! So I set up a set of experiments to examine the pollination mystery of Darlingtonia. And as I noted in a short communication to the International Carnivorous Plant Society's publication (Rice 2006b) this year, I had a real surprise!

Start the photo-essay!


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Revised: October 2007
©Barry Rice, 2005