The Carnivorous Plant FAQ Field Trip Report -

Southern Spain in 2011

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Changing lenses:
Beth was photographing the stuff she loves, like butterflies and insects. At one point she needed a break from this exasperating work and starting digging in the dry soil. She was curious what the soil profile was like. Without any tools, she was only able to scratch a few inches into the hard ground, but what she found was a dense, sandy mix, that was essentially dry to the touch.

How do these plants grow in these conditions?

The worn-out, rutted service road that reached this site gave me some cause for concern. The disturbed soil near the road was completely dominated by an invasive purple-flowering plant that I am pretty sure is Centaurea cyanus. The cover from the Centaurea was just about 100%, and there were no Drosophyllum plants growing with them.

Were the Centaurea plants growing in soils disturbed by the road-activity? Or were they displacing the Drosophyllum? I do not know, but I instinctively developed a distaste for the Centaurea! "Leave those Drosophyllum alone, you nasty Centaurea!"

Another view of carnivores and weeds!

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Revised: June 2011
©Barry Rice, 2005