Common Butterwort (Pinguicula vulgaris)
Our second carnivorous plant post!! What a surprise to find dozens of these strange, small, beautiful plants tucking into dripping wet rock crevices less than a mile from the Mt. Baker Visitor Center. The tiny insects you see trapped in the rosette of sticky yellow leaves, are digested by the plant. They provide nitrogen and other nutrients that the plant’s rocky habitat otherwise lacks. The striking deep purple funnel-shaped flowers are only about 1 inch across. They have a double lobed upper and three-lobed lower lip, balanced by a spur that extends behind.
Several butterworts are found in Florida, unlike vulgaris, which is concentrated in the north, mostly in Washington’s Olympic Mountains and North Cascades into Canada, with some found in pockets of Southern Oregon/Northern California and the Eastern Oregon Wallowa Mountains.