Saturday, May 19, 2007
Nature: Red in petal and stamen
We camped out in our backyard again last night. It was nice and cool, even cold enough for a blanket in the night, and there were more stars than when we did this before because the moon wasn't up. I didn't hear the whippoorwills, though, and I guess they've moved on. I miss them.
This morning we went for a picnic at the park, and we found a nature preserve only a mile or so from our house. The preserve is trying to restore an area that is partially wetlands and partially long-leaf pine forest. There's a boardwalk through the area so that you don't trample the plants.
The coolest thing about the park was a large field virtually filled with pitcher plants. In case you don't know what pitcher plants are, they're carnivorous plants. An insect climbs into one looking for some nectar, slides down into a pool of fluid at the bottom, and is trapped and slowly digested. The picture for this entry is the North American pitcher plant. This is not a picture of the plants we saw today but this was the variety.
To see nearly an acre of pitcher plants waving in the breeze while they waited for their own picnic was rather eerie. There were also sundews in the field, which are another carnivorous plant. I imagined walking through that field as a man only a few inches tall. I imagined being in a world where humans were prey and the plants were the predators. It gave me a nice little shiver in the sun.