We endured the little shop for only a short while because I have no patience for stories about plants that devour human beings.
I was familiar with carnivorous plants, having grown up in North Carolina, home of the Venus Fly Trap. Of course, it was mostly head knowledge learned in social studies class but a plant that "eats" insects is one of those facts that sticks with a 7th grader.
I’ve seen Venus Fly Traps - but never growing in the wild. Perhaps that’s because their natural habitat is strictly within a 100 mile radius of Wilmington, North Carolina. They live in the boggy savannahs of the Carolinas which I typically pass on my way to the beach.
A few facts:
- Venus Fly Trap has stiff sensitive hairs on its leaves
- When an insect bends the hairs, the lobes of the leaf snap together, trapping it inside
- The leaves excrete digestive juices which break down and utilize the softer inner parts of the insect.
- When the digestive process is finished the plant opens and the ecoskeleton blows away.
- The plant grows best in poor soil and thrives on the nutrients provided by insects.
- The Venus Flytrap was discovered in 1763 by Arthur Dobbs, governor of North Carolina.
For pictures and much more info, visit this site.
For a video visit to a flytrap in its natural habitat click here. (Unless, of course, you'd rather not see the hard facts of the food chain in action. But it's a David Attenborough, BBC wildlife video that is more science than drama.)