This plant sits on the kitchen windowsill. We love having interesting plants in the house. This insectivorous plant is a brilliant plant for interest. It catches flies in its spring like traps and now has put up six flower stems.
Last year we had a flytrap flowering but only a couple of flower stems so this is a real treat. These plants are easy to look after if you remember to water them. They need wet conditions and the pot always has water in the tray. Most books say they need rain water but we only use tap water and they seem to grow fine.
The other plants that are also insectivorous and great to grow are pitcher plants .
These act as a pitfall trap and digest insects that fall into the watery depth of their pitchers.
These trumpet pitchers (Sarrecenia) are available in garden centres and can be grown successfully in the house with care. They look spectacular.
Back to the kitchen Venus flytrap . The structure of the plant is interesting.
These modified leaves are traps for insects. They have sensitive hairs inside that act as a trigger. The two sides can close in a tenth of a second. These plants come from poor soil areas of North America such as north and South Carolina. The plant gains nutrients from the insects it traps and digests.When the trap is shut glands produce enzymes that digest the insect , the chitin of the exoskeleton and the nitrogen rich blood. This can take several days. The leaf will then reopen and the husk of the insect blows away.