Nepenthes northiana


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Nepenthes nortiana or Miss North's Pitcher Plant is a vulnerable species of tropical pitcher plant of the family Nepenthaceae, endemic to the hills around the village of Bau in Kuching, Sarawak. The specific epithet northiana is to honor Marianne North, an English naturalist and botanical artist who first illustrated the species. Nepenthes northiana has an altitudinal distribution of 0-500 m above sea level, and is restricted to limestone substrates. It generally grows in exposed sites on near-vertical limestone cliffs with permanent water seepage.

Nepenthes northiana is a climbing pitcher plant with light green stem that reach 10 m and up to 15 mm in diameter. The cylindrical to triangular internodes are up to 25 cm long. Leaves are light green, chartaceous and sessile to sub-petiolate. The oblong-obovate lamina is up to 40 cm long by 10 cm wide, with an acute apex that gradually attenuate towards the base. The base is semi-amplexicaul and decurrent into a pair of wings. There are four longitudinal veins and indistinct pinnate veins on either side of the midrib. About 30-60 nectar glands are present on the underside of the lamina. Tendrils are up to 100 cm long.

Rosette and lower pitchers are 40 cm in height by 15 cm wide, being some of the largest in the genus. The one with exceptionally large pitchers can hold more than a quart (940 ml) of fluid. The pitchers are typically ovoid, sometimes being slightly cylindrical in the upper part. A pair of fringed wings of up to 15 mm wide runs down the ventral surface of the pitcher. The inner surface has reduced waxy zone. The ovate pitcher mouth has an oblique insertion, and is slightly raised towards the rear. The peristome is white to red with darker stripes, and is greatly expanded at the sides, measuring up to 25 mm wide and often has undulate margins. The inner edge is lined with short but distinct teeth. The ovate to oblong pitcher lid or operculum has an acute apex but lacks appendages. An unbranched spur of up to 20 mm long is inserted near the base of the pitcher lid.

Upper pitchers are infundibular throughout. The fringed wings runs down the ventral surface of the pitcher, although they may be reduced to ribs. In other respects, upper pitcher are similar to their lower counterparts.

Nepenthes northiana produces a racemose inflorescence. The peduncle is up to 60 cm long, while the rachis is up to 40 cm long. Male inflorescences are generally shorter than female inflorescences. Partial peduncles are two-flowered and up to 50 mm long.

Nepenthes northiana is virtually glabrous and lacks a distinct indumentum. The pitchers are greenish-white with numerous red blotches.



Nepenthes northiana
Author: Rbrtjong (public domain)



Nepenthes northiana at Bau Sarawak
Author: JeremiahsCPs (Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported)





Nepenthes northiana
Author: Rbrtjong (public domain)



Nepenthes northiana
Author: Rbrtjong (public domain)






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