A carnivorous plant
Now here's an interesting fact - Round-leaved sundew is a carnivorous bog plant and is one of three native sundews found in this country.
It's well established on Risley's mossland but because it's a tiny plant (only about 4-5cm in diameter) and can be quite challenging to spot!
The plant has hair like tendrils on each tiny reddish leaf and secretes a sugary substance known as mucilage (sounds grim doesn't it). This paste sits on the tendrils like sticky droplets, attracting passing insects which then get stuck in the substance.
The whole leaf then wraps itself around the insect, and the plant uses enzymes to dissolve and digest the helpless creature (like something from a horror film). Because peat soil doesn't have enough nutrients for every plant to feed on, sundews have evolved this predatory way of life to supplement their diet.
Sundews also have an ingenious way of surviving the cold winter conditions. The plants disappear to almost nothing except a bud of tightly curled leaves at ground level, known as a hibernaculum.
Did you know?
- Round-leaved sundew is a carnivorous plant
- Inspects supplement their peat soil diet