Sarracenia Species, Northern Pitcher Plant, Purple Pitcherplant, Turtle Socks

Sarracenia purpurea

Family: Sarraceniaceae
Genus: Sarracenia (sar-uh-SEN-ee-uh) (Info)
Species: purpurea (pur-PUR-ee-uh) (Info)


Carnivorous and Insectivorous

Water Requirements:

Very high moisture needs; suitable for bogs and water gardens

Sun Exposure:

Light Shade



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us


6-12 in. (15-30 cm)


6-9 in. (15-22 cm)


USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)

USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:

Fuchsia (red-purple)

Chartreuse (yellow-green)

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer

Mid Summer

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

Scarify seed before sowing

Seed Collecting:

Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Brea, California

Novato, California

Jacksonville, Florida

Cherry Valley, Illinois

Prospect, Kentucky

Bellaire, Michigan

Raleigh, North Carolina

Athens, Ohio

Cleveland, Ohio

Georgetown, Ohio

Cookeville, Tennessee

Houston, Texas

San Antonio, Texas

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Gardeners' Notes:


On Jan 3, 2012, chele61636 from Corpus Christi, TX wrote:

My daughter got an exotic plant present for Christmas and this was one of the plants that it came with. (It just says "sarracenia mix" it doesn't say WHICH one it is :/ kinda frustrating)

Anyway I'm excited to see what grows! We had to place the seeds in a ziplock bag in a tablespoon of water and then in the fridge for six weeks. (I hope that info helps someone) It's only been about a week. So if anyone cares to keep up with how this goes for us, I'd be happy to share. So far so good I guess. I don't really like the idea of waiting for 6 weeks to plant the seeds but oh well. I don't have a green thumb but 2 plants of our 4 exotic seedlings have already started growing so I guess we are off to a good start :)


On Nov 7, 2009, azulivines from Burnaby, BC (Zone 7b) wrote:

Sarracenia Purpurea is the most cold-tolerant of all the pitcher plants.

Twisted, veined, and multi-coloured pitchers make this one of the most dramatic looking pitcher plants.

Compact and low growing, this species thrives in bog-like conditions in containers and in un-drained garden spaces. We grow them close to the front of the garden so the plant can be fully enjoyed.

My favourite of all sarracenia.


On Dec 6, 2004, Todd_Boland from St. John's, NL (Zone 5b) wrote:

The pitcher plant is the Provincial Floral Emblem for my home province of Newfoundland. We know a good plant when we see it! Having plenty of bogs here, pitcher plants are quite numerous and devour multitudes of the Newfoundland air force.....mosquitoes! I have never grown it as we sort of take them for granted but a friend of mine grows one in a plastic dishpan! It is now self-seeding everywhere in the pan. She has promised me some for next year so I can have my own mini bog garden. If you grow one, check the water in the pitcher for mosquito larvae...there are actually 3 species of mosquito that lay their eggs in the pitcher! Their larvae are immune to the digestive enzymes and actually part-take of the pitcher plants victims. What a great plant for a floral emblem!


On Dec 6, 2004, bogman from Cleveland, OH wrote:

By far one of my favorite bog plants. It is a fantastic performer often putting up a dozen or more flowers on a well established plant. In the late summer it catches yellow jackets and wasps by the dozens and shortly after when we get a cold snap the pitchers turn a deep crimson, adding to it's appeal!