D. rotundifolia and P. vulgaris in the Pacific Northwest
It’s still pretty early in the spring season so I didn’t expect to see many flowers in bloom, but much to my surprise, there were quite a few flowers out. One specimen in particular completely took my breath away. I have never seen anything like this before – I don’t even know how much time I spent poking and prodding this poor plant – and it definitely go the bulk of my attention this afternoon.
Turns out it is called a Thalictrum occidentale, or Western Meadowrue, and it’s part of the buttercup family. I found this out (plus a couple of other interesting tidbits of info) by scouring my tattered copy of “Plants of the Pacific Northwest Coast” as soon as I got home. The species has distinctive male and female plants, and the female plants actually don’t have any petals at all. The male Meadowrue (pictured) is the more flamboyant of the pair and offers the dangling chandelier-like stamens and purple anthers to attractant pollinators.
One other very exciting thing I discovered is that in addition to cobra lilies, there are two other carnivorous plants that call the Pacific Northwest home. drum roll please…. They are the round-leaved sundew, Drosera rotundifolia, and the common butterwort, Pinguicula vulgaris.
I found these little beauties under the heading “Oddballs” in “Plants of the PNW Coast” and according to the regional map, it looks like they are native to coastal regions as far south as Newport and as far north as the Cook Inlet in Alaska. Alaska? Can this be true? I have no idea, but I’m very excited by the prospect of it. Have you ever seen carnivorous plants in the Pacific Northwest region? And if so, where?