Sunday, 26 June 2016

Sarracenia x moorei

"Sarracenia x moorei -- Trumpet Pitcher Plant", drawing by
Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2016

The drawing featured today shows a primary hybrid in the genus Sarracenia. Its full name is Sarracenia x moorei. This cultivar was developed from combining Sarracenia flava and Sarracenia leucophylla (see photos below).

"Sarracenia flava -- Yellow Pitcher Plant"
photograph by Jean-Pol Grandmont 

"Sarracenia leucophylla -- Pitcher Plant"
photograph by
Stephen C. Doonan, Portales, New Mexico

The genus, Sarracenia, was named for Dr. Michel Sarrazin, 18th century physician and botanist in Quebec, Canada. As for the name of the cultivar, moorei, I have, thus far, been unable to determine exactly who this Moore person might be.

For those who are interested, here is more detailed information on this plant.  
Sarracenia is a genus comprising 8 to 11 species of North American pitcher plants, commonly called trumpet pitchers. The genus belongs to the family Sarraceniaceae

Sarracenia is a genus of carnivorous plants indigenous to the eastern seaboard of the United States, Texas, the Great Lakes area and southeastern Canada, with most species occurring only in the southeastern United States (only S. purpurea occurs in cold to temperate regions). 

The plant's leaves have evolved into a funnel or pitcher shape in order to trap insects. The plant attracts its insect prey with a combination of the leaves' color and scent plus appealing secretions on the lip of the pitcher leaves. Slippery footing at the pitcher's rim causes insects to fall inside where they die and are digested by the plant. As well, at least one species uses nectar which is laced with a narcotic drug. 

Flowers are produced early in spring. They are held singly on long stems, generally well separated from the pitcher traps to avoid the trapping of potential pollinators such as bees. 

Sarracenia tend to inhabit permanently wet fens, swamps, and grassy plains where they are threatened by development and the drainage of their habitat. Estimates indicated that approximately 98% of Sarracenia habitat has already been destroyed in the southeastern U.S., the home of all but one subspecies of Sarracenia. Currently the biggest threats to surviving populations are urban development, drainage of habitat for forestry, runoff of herbicides from agriculture, fire suppression and the cut pitcher plant trade for the florist and gardening industries. 

Some protective legislation exists. Several southeastern states, such as Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina, have conservation laws which protect Sarracenia. However, most of the remaining wetlands in the southeastern U.S. are privately owned. Plants on this land are not protected by state legislation. The key states of Alabama and Mississippi have no such legislation at all (I’m ashamed to say) so even plants on public land have no protection.  

If there are readers of this posting who have any influence on those who govern in the States of Alabama and Mississippi, perhaps you might want to consider helping to change the status of these fascinating, endangered plants!

Much of the above text was taken from various Internet sources.


"Suki in the Morning",
waiting impatiently for me to get up from
my comfortable chair so that she can take
possession of it for her post-breakfast nap!
As most of you know by now, one of my "distraction techniques" involves streaming videos of movies and TV series -- especially British ones.  I normally do this while reclining in my recliner with my large-screen, iPad propped up with a pillow on my lap.  

If I am watching a really good movie or series, I find that I can "be distracted" up to two hours before I start to notice the pain again and have to get up and move around a bit or take more medication.

Sometimes, however, I have an additional distraction during my distraction exercise and that additional distraction is named Suki. Let me explain...

Following a meal, Suki sleeps for a few hours in one of her favourite locations. She then awakens and begins to meow rather loudly. As soon as I hear this, I know she wants me to start calling her name. This I do as she slowly makes her way to where I am reclining in my big chair. The meowing continues non-stop until she reaches my location.

Once she arrives at my chair, she jumps (very carefully these days) up onto the lower part of the recliner and then makes her way up to my lap.  Once in the lap area, she plops herself down so that part of her is on the chair seat and part is across my lap.  This positions her so that she, like me, is facing the iPad screen.

For the next little while, Suki and I watch the screen together.  I am not sure what she sees other than movement but she does reach out every so often with her paw to touch the moving image on the screen.  Mostly, however, she just sits and watches the show with me.  Eventually, she tires of this, closes her eyes and drifts off to sleep.

Although I know the rule about never moving when your cat is asleep in your lap, I can only last for so long these days before a move becomes necessary.  When my awareness of the pain becomes too great and I know I really need to move about a bit, I gently awaken Suki. She is never pleased about this and grumbles and complains mightily as I push her off the chair so that I can get my feet back on the floor and do whatever it is that I need to do at that point to try and make myself feel better.

I must say, though, that, in my opinion, there is something rather special about having a cat sleep in your lap.  With Suki, I always get this feeling from her of her absolute trust in me. Seeing her there in my lap, I know that she is safe. As I watch her sleeping soundly, I find that this somehow makes me feel safe as well. These are often very special moments for me -- maybe for Suki as well...

As to the other aspects of my life, there is not a great deal to report. I did have a lovely visit with a dear friend -- one of the first friends I made after arriving in Canada so many years ago now. This friend now lives in Burlington so we are not able to see one another very often.  It was wonderful to see her again and to catch up on the news.

I also had one medical appointment -- just another follow-up. All my test results were the same as they have been for the past few months so the doctor was pleased.  Now I don't have to go back for another three months.  Hooray.

There is only one appointment scheduled for the coming week so I hope things will be fairly quiet. 



"Icon -- Come, Follow Me", by the hand of Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2016

When the days for Jesus' being taken up were fulfilled, he resolutely determined to journey to Jerusalem, and he sent messengers ahead of him. On the way they entered a Samaritan village to prepare for his reception there, but they would not welcome him because the destination of his journey was Jerusalem. When the disciples James and John saw this they asked, "Lord, do you want us to call down fire from heaven to consume them?" Jesus turned and rebuked them, and they journeyed to another village. As they were proceeding on their journey someone said to him, "I will follow you wherever you go." Jesus answered him, "Foxes have dens and birds of the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to rest his head." And to another he said, "Follow me." But he replied, "Lord, let me go first and bury my father." But he answered him, "Let the dead bury their dead. But you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God." And another said, "I will follow you, Lord, but first let me say farewell to my family at home." To him Jesus said, "No one who sets a hand to the plow and looks to what was left behind is fit for the kingdom of God."  Luke 9:51-62

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