Image source: Fernando Rivadavia
Range: Pico de Padre Angelo, Minas Gerais, Brazil
“Discovered” in images posted on Facebook in 2012 and described in 2015, this rare and unique species is endemic as currently known to a single mountaintop in eastern Minas Gerais, Brazil, along a narrow band of thin peaty soils on sandstone outcrops, amongst shrubby vegetation at around 1500 meters in elevation. This is the largest currently known New World sundew, developing woody stems covered in old leaves that may exceed 120 cm in length and can branch one to rarely several times as well as develop from basal shoots and root plantlets. Spreading rosettes of leaves up to 24 cm in length each (producing a rosette up to 50 cm across) grow at the branch tips, the leaves generally apetiolate in mature specimens but possessing a distinct petiole when young, tapering filiform to linear-lanceolate in shape and beginning erect after unfurling before gradually falling outward and down into a skirt. Coloration is typically bright green to slightly red-tinged, and light red to scarlet in the tentacles. A thick indumentum of white hairs covers nearly all eglandular portions of the plant including abaxial leaf surfaces. The inflorescence is an impressive candelabra-style scorpioid cyme covered in pilose hairs, up to 35 cm long and bearing an average of 6-10 branches at 2/3 of the way up, supporting nearly 200 blooms. Flowers can reach up to 2 cm across and with obovate, light pink petals. In overall size, this species is considered to be among the three largest sundews on earth, and is closely allied to species such as D. graminifolia and D. spiralis but easily distinguished on aspects of size and branching habit.
Cultivation: Grow in a sphagnous or well-aerated peat soil with sand or perlite, kept moist and humid with temperatures of 70-85°F daytime and notably cooler at night, year round (though plants may benefit from a seasonal, slightly drier period to trigger blooming). Sow seeds on soil surface, and grow in strong artificial light to full sun.
Lifespan and reproduction: Perennial. Reproduces via seeds, basal shoots, and root buds, and may be propagable via cuttings.
Gonela, P. M., Rivadavia, F., and Fleischmann, A. (2015). Drosera magnifica (Droseraceae): the largest New World, sundew, discovered on Facebook. Phytotaxa 220(3): 257-267.