Plant of the Month — August 2016
Utricularia menziesii R.Br. — Redcoats
Utricularia menziesii (Redcoats) is a small tuberous, insectivorous herb with bright red flowers, growing to a few centimetres in height. This intriguing plant forms colonies in moist soils in winter-wet depressions, wetlands, or on moss covered granite outcrops and can be found in the south-west of WA from Perth to east of Esperance.
The genus name Utricularia refers to the plant’s unusual roots, which are festooned with utricles, or little bag-like bladders, 1-several mm in size. These little bladders are carnivorous traps, which when touched spring open to suck up any free swimming organisms caught with the inflow of water. Utricularia is a cosmopolitan genus and consists of over 200 species worldwide. In WA there are 41 species, which mostly occur in the south-west or in the Kimberley.
Photo: G. Byrne
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