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Drosera quartzicola

Range: Serra do Cipo, Minas Gerais, Brazil

 

A relatively newly described, and one of the rarest, species of Latin American sundew, this plant is an inhabitant of pure white quartz soils amongst sparse vegetation  in the mountains of Minas Gerais, where only 4 populations of around 300 plants altogether have been found; elevation is on average around 1300 meters. Plants may develop short stems to 4 cm high, atop which the rosette may reach 8 cm across and is composed of erect to semi-erect, elongate strap shaped to roughly lanceolate. Petioles are usually half the length of the leaf and roughly parallel, covered in short white trichomes (also found across the abaxial lamina, scapes, and sepals) as well as strange globose-tipped yellowish trichomes (also found abaxially on lamina, scapes, and sepals), and lamina are lanceolate, tapered at the tips, and often slightly curved along their length. Coloration is bright green with scarlet tentacles to red blushed also in the lamina. Inflorescences may reach 12 cm tall, bearing up to 11 flowers. Blooms are just over 2 cm across, with broadly obovate, bright pink or pink-lilac petals. The habitat of this species grows extremely dry in the winter season, causing the rosettes to shrink and leaves to curl inward, relying on condensation for moisture which the globose yellow trichomes may assist in gathering. This species is allied with D. schwackei from which it can be distinguished by triangular stipules, longer narrower lanceolate leaves, and shorter scapes among other traits; it can also be distinguished from relatives like D. chrysolepis, camporupestris, and graminifolia by its shorter leaves and scapes.

 

Cultivation: grow in a 4:1 sand/peat soil (preferably quartz sand if attainable), kept relatively moist and extremely humid, with temps of 60-85°F day, 50-65°F night, year round (though allowing to notably dry in winter may promote blooming). Sow seeds on soil surface, and grow in strong artificial light to full sun.

 

Lifespan and reproduction: perennial. Reproduces through seed and possibly division, and can be grown through leaf or root cuttings. 

 

Sources: https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-9pmGDbY1qiI/ToYlCnrg7XI/AAAAAAAAChQ/Wgv9GyKme1A/s800/Drosera%252520quartzicola%252520%252528211%252529.JPG

Rivadavia, F. and Gonella, P. (2011). Drosera quartzicola (Droseraceae), a new and threatened species from the Serra do Cipo, Brazil. Phytotaxa 29: 33-40.