How exciting it is to find another species of Sundew – I love Sundews almost as much I love the Orchids. The striking foliage and almost alien shapes and colours really grab my attention. Add to that the contrasting purity of white (or pink in some species) flowers and I can’t stop looking at them.
I’ve noticed tiny red circles on the ground ever since we moved here, but I never imagined they were flowers, let alone insectivorous Sundew plants! The circles were so tiny, I assumed the growth was either a lichen or a moss. As I don’t have a good reference for moss and lichen species, I didn’t have as much curiosity as I have for flowering plants. Today was overcast and the conditions here are still so dry, not a lot is in flower. So, the red colour caught my eye. Then the circular pattern caught my attention. I recognised the ‘spokes’ as a Drosera pattern. Blowing the images up on the computer, I could see sticky drops of moisture on the spines which cover the red, circular leaves.
Initially I was thrown as most of the field guides I have don’t mention Drosera pygmaea. In the end I did a Google search and found a list of 116 species of Drosera which are native to Australia. Cross referencing with a few online sites, I narrowed down to the species found in our area, and another Google search to locate images for each of these species. Finally, there it was in all of its splendour!
Looking at other photographs, I see that this species has white flowers on long slender stalks. One of the Tiny Sundews I photographed seems to have a bud about to open. By the time I discovered this, it was too dark to return for another shot. So, tomorrow I will see if I can find one in flower. My guess is that this will not be as easy as it sounds. Look how large the grains of sand look alongside the plant.