The Floral Emblem of Newfoundland:
The Pitcher Plant
Original drawing by Mary Bayfield Kelly
Reproduced by permission
The pitcher plant (Sarracenia purpurea) was chosen as the provincial floral emblem of Newfoundland in 1954. The plant is quite common throughout the province. It thrives in marshy, nitrogen-poor, acidic soil areas. Its tubular shaped leafs have hairs, pointing downward, which trap insects that have fallen into it or have been attracted to it by the sweet juice that is found at the mouth of the plant. The leafs have fluid at the bottom that contain digestive material that allow the carnivorous plant to absorb the insect. Thus, the plant is provided with essential nutrients that the poor soil was unable to provide for its sustenance.
© 2004 Claude Bélanger, Marianopolis College