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Heliamphora

Heliamphora

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Heliamphora sarracenioides (Ptari, Ven.)

Heliamphora sarracenioides

Maybe the most spectacular of all Heliamphora species!

Hands down one of the most unique looking Heliamphora!

H. sarracenioides is so called because it does not produce a nectar spoon like most Heliamphora but instead the leaf extends over the pitcher opening and forms a hood-like structure (in a manner similar to the eponymous North American pitcher plants). The hood is typically upright, with variably wavy margins, and comes to a sharp point. The nectar glands are situated on the interior of the pitcher opening which is completely smooth.

This fascinating Heliamphora is only found on the small inhospitable summit of Ptari Tepui at elevations of 2400-2450m and the entire population consists of barely a few thousand individuals. The plants grow among mixed low vegetation in what little substrate can accumulate in often very wet areas. H. sarracenioides often grows in close proximity to strands of H. purpurascens. The two species readily hybridize and in some areas hybrid populations outnumber the parent species.

The pitchers are generally up to 20cm tall in habitat and that size can also be attained in cultivation. Few live pitchers are held at a time, surrounded by many dead ones. The waist is at a third up from the base and has a drainage hole. The upper part of the pitcher tends to narrow towards the opening. The color is a striking dark red to maroon though interestingly the interior is often much darker and can appear almost black!

H. sarracenioides is truly a remarkable species! It’s a reliable, steady grower that makes for a great conversation piece in the collection.

(Carow, T., A. Wistuba & P. Harbarths, 2005)

 

 

   
 
 
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Heliamphora sarracenioides

Maybe the most spectacular of all Heliamphora species!

Heliamphora General Information