Rat-Eating Plant: Run for Your Lives!

Now, this has nothing to do with Phoenix xeriscapes or desert gardening.  But it is truly spectacular!

Apparently, botanists discovered this carnivorous, rat-eating plant two years ago in the Philippines. Like its carnivorous sister, Venus Flytrap, the genus Nepenthes (“pitcher plant”) has some 75 species and thrive in very poor, sandy soils by eating insects and, in some cases, small rodents.

The plants secrete nectar around the “mouth”  to attract their prey, then use a liquid combination of enzymes and acid to break it down.  It’s creepy and cool at the same time!

The world’s largest pitcher plant is the rat-eating species, Nepenthes rajah, shown here.  RUN FOR YOUR LIFE, ‘LIL GUY!  The photo doesn’t really do this plant justice and I hate to send you away, but check out this truly amazing time-lapse video!  And then come back when you’re done…  ;-)

 

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