The much rarer colour form of the more common Sarracenia purpurea ssp. purpurea. The lack of anthocyanin pigment (Red, purple and Blue) makes these plants completely green (antho-free). Although rare this is the most common of all antho-free Sarracenia. Occurring in at least three sites in Ontario (probably more) Quebec, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland. These all green plants are easy to identify at most locations as the plant has absolutely now red pigment, even at the base and growth point. The flowers are also completely green and yellow.
ADDITON NOTE: Please do not disclose the location of these plants, they are in easy to access areas and the target of poachers. We will delete any info regarding the location of these plants.
Some S.purpurea have a genetic defect and are unable to produce red pigments (anthocyanin). Those plants are bright green all over and also have yellow-greenish petals when in flower. But be careful: Often shade grown plants have been misidentified as f.heterophylla. While this is very rare, also red plants with yellow-green flower petals have been found. So check out those very young leaves: In f.heterophylla (left) they are bright green whereas they are reddish in this veinless form of S.purpurea (right):
For almost all Sarracenia species rare 'antho-free' mutants have been discovered. These all 'green' S.purpurea have been described 1822 by Eaton from Massachusetts as S.heterophylla, but later revisions give it the taxonomic rank 'forma'. Most f.heterophylla in cultivation are probably from lower Michigan, but so far f.heterophylla was also found in CT, MA, ME, MI, MN, NH, NJ, NL, NS, ON, PE, QC, VT and WI. In principal it may be found whereever normal pitcher plants grow. Usually only few plants of f.heterophylla are found, but in some places f.heterophylla occur more frequently. This was noted e.g. in Michigan, Nova Scotia and Ontario. Here f.heterophylla cross with typical plants and a small percentage of the plants are f.heterophylla.
It is very easy to show that the genetic defect leading to f.heterophylla is recessive. So if you cross f.heterophylla with typical plants all the offspring looks typical (red and veined). Those plants are heterozygous. Now you can nicely test Mendel's laws with these: If you cross those heterozygous plants you'll get 25% f.heterophylla (and 1/2 heterozygous plants and 1/4 homozygous, typically red plants). If you cross f.heterophylla with a heterozygous plant you'll get 75% f.heterophylla (and 1/4 heterozygous plants). You can tell these apart even as sungrown seedlings:
Usually spontaneously occurring antho-free plants have more than just one genetic defect and many of them grow weakly. But in thriving populations with more than one f.heterophylla they get rid of the other defects and grow just as healthily. So in a population with thriving plants of f.heterophylla you'll have a lot more normally looking plants that recessively carry the gene for f.heterophylla. Some people think heterozygous plants are greener, giving rise to veinless plants. Others believe heterozygous plants are more colourful. You can easily test by crossing that neither is the case.
Bonjour Jeff, sorry, no habitat pictures. I can show some pictures of cultivated plants later. They grow just like other S.purpurea in their habitat. Usually raised bogs with deep Sphagnum peat layer or floating mats along lakes and rivers. These are low growing plants, so they don't like competition. They are adapted to open habitat growing in full sun. With succession of shrubs and trees they slowly disappear. They grow mostly in living Sphagnum with the usual set of boreal bog plants (different Cyperaceae like Carex and Rhynchospora species, Ericaceae like Andromeda, Vaccinium, Chamaedaphne, Rhododendron species, etc.). S.purpurea ssp. purpurea f. heterophylla has been noted for about 200 years. The recessive gene responsible for being anthocyanin-free is passed to the offspring. f.heterophylla is reproduced reliably by seed, see explantation above. Eric
Nova Scotia is home to a lot of S.purpurea, so it is not surprising that also f.heterophylla is found there in several places. In one place more than just a few antho-free plants grow together with typically coloured plants. A report on these plants and their habitat was given by Sheridan and Scholl in ICPN 22 (1993) p.106. I received some seed of cultivated plants 20 years ago. But all seedlings looked like typically coloured ssp.purpurea. I grew them to flowering size, selfed them and got antho-free plants as shown in the photo above. So the seed I got must have been open pollinated with another unknown purpurea, maybe even ssp.venosa. My plants mostly have a somewhat 'rectangular' orifice, i.e. the lip is not straight like in many other ssp.purpurea with a more 'D'-shaped orifice. But since there is a lot of variation within S.purpurea this is not of much significance. The flowering stem gets 45 cm tall. My plants are probably not 100% pure, however, there are plants from this location in cultivation in the US, Canada and Europe which are unspoiled (but probably selfed a few times).
This is a small plant with amazingly long flower scape height (62 cm). The pitchers have a narrow base and wide top. The lid is not very big and quite flat. The flowers are small. It took me a long time to grow this one up. Unfortunately it didn't produce any pollen, but maybe I can cross it with another (typical) plant from the same site grown from seed in the future.
dvg: Sarra's safe inside
Mar 31, 2019 20:40:58 GMT -5
bonfield: I've decided to finally reveal my best-kept secret for growing healthy Neps: Just spit on them every few days, the enzymes in saliva help them to better absorb the fertilizer I spray them with!
Apr 1, 2019 14:24:31 GMT -5
dvg: Salivating up your drools?
Apr 1, 2019 16:30:07 GMT -5
dvg: Duped again on April Fool's!
Apr 1, 2019 16:30:45 GMT -5