NOTICE: The Conservatory will close at 2 pm for an official government function on Tuesday, May 5. The Conservatory and the National Garden will be closed on Wednesday, May 6, for an official government function, reopening at 10 am on Thursday, May 7.
Notice that the flowers of pitcher plants, or Sarracenia, are quite different from the foliage. In early spring, flowers emerge and the new "pitchers" emerge later. These are actually modified leaves that trap insects. Insects are attracted into the pitchers and are unable to exit due to a combination of slippery surfaces and tiny downward-pointing hairs that line the inside. Pitcher plants are found in damp, nutrient-poor soils throughout the Southeast and Gulf Coast through the Great Lakes region into Canada. Threats to these plants include habitat loss, fire suppression, agriculture, development and over-collection. Sarracenia are protected by the Endangered Species Act, CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species) and through inclusion on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.