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Pink Sundew Drosera capillaris

The genus Drosera, otherwise known as the Sundew, belongs to a large family group called Droseraceae that encompasses all of the carnivorous/insectivorous plants.  There are five species of Sundew found in Florida, of which the Pink Sundew is one of the more common.

The Pink Sundew is a small insectivorous plant frequently found in wet pine flatwoods and bogs of the southeastern United States.  It is a small plant averaging 1-2 inches in diameter.  The round, spoon shaped leaves are arranged in a basal rosette that usually lie flat on the ground.  The leaves may be lime-green or red in color, depending upon the amount of sunlight the plant receives.

The leaves are covered with tiny hairlike structures, called tentacles, that secrete droplets of fluid that give the plant its glistening, dew-drop appearance.  Insects attracted to the plant become stuck in this sticky fluid. The tentacles slowly begin to enclose the victim.  Digestive enzymes and acids slowly dissolve the victim’s body and the resultant liquified insect is absorbed by the leaves.

Smooth flowering stalks, usually less than six inches high, are produced that have pink flowers with five petals.  These flowers bloom in the spring.

The two photos on this page were taken in the Myakka State Forest in Charlotte County.

The range distribution maps for the Pink Sundew are from the Plants Database of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).