This Week's Podcast: Conservation Through Propagation
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A little while ago, I wrote a story for the New York Times on carnivorous plants in the garden, and I thought it might be a good idea to learn more about these plants and the places they live, or used to live in the wild.
Philip M. Sheridan is the director and president of the Meadowview Biological Research Station in Woodford, VA. He has had over twenty years of experience in biological fieldwork and teaching. Meadowview is a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving and restoring rare wetland plants, habitats and associated ecosystems on the coastal plain of Maryland and Virginia.
Meadowview’s area of specialization is an endangered habitat type known as pitcher plant bogs or seepage wetlands. Bogs are acidic, nutrient poor wetlands characterized by a unique community of plants and animals. Many bogs have been lost in Maryland and Virginia through draining, fire-suppression, herbicide use, development or neglect and most of the plants found in these sites are threatened with extinction.
Meadowview’s goal is to preserve and restore a part of the natural bog by returning the endangered Yellow Pitcher Plant, Sarracenia flava (right) and the Purple Pitcher Plant, Sarracenia purpurea, to their historic ranges. Sarracenia flava formerly occurred in eight counties in Virginia and is now down to two populations in two counties totaling less than 100 plants.
Meadowview Biological Research Station [link] invites people to visit the facility, buy plants, make donations, discuss conservation issues and volunteer and view the plants and wildlife. The facility (below) is open by appointment.