MORE THAN 21 SPECIES
History and etymology
In 1833 A. Saint-Hilaire discovered the plant in Brazil. In 1874, E. Warming made an interesting study. It was dedicated to a countess, Madame de Genlis, who wrote, among others, books on plants.
The Genlisea grow in the Caribbean islands, Central America and South America on a territory that ranges from Honduras to Recife in northeastern Brazil with a width not exceeding 500 km. They also exist in south-eastern Brazil, on the African continent, in the tropics and Southern lands, and the island of Madagascar.
The plants are fond of soggy banks of streams, swamps. The ground is often boggy and sandy, and sometimes Genlisea have their leaves completely under water. They enjoy a tropical climate, and day and night temperatures can sometimes present a large amplitude with altitude. Other types of carnivorous plants like Drosera, Utricularia, are found often in these habitats.
DescriptionPerennial or annual, semi-aquatic, herbaceous plants, with rosettes of leaves that range from 2 cm to 6 cm in diameter. The leaves are of two types, linear or oblong and green for the first, and often underground and forming traps for the seconds.
The fork-shaped traps are 2 cm to 15 cm long, the branches are hollow and round, have a small cavity in which the prey will die. Digestion is carried out by enzymes.
The prey is mostly protozoa and small crustaceans.
Flowers with a calyx of five divisions (two in the genus Utricularia) are purple, white or yellow and are located on stems of 10-40 cm high.