BladderwortBladderwort. What a weird name. What is it?

It’s a floating, carnivorous plant found in waterways throughout North America.

Come to Audubon in July and August and you may see our ponds be-speckled with the snapdragon-like yellow flowers produced by this plant.

Floating?  Yup.  It doesn’t put roots into soil.  Most of the plant is an underwater and stays near the bottom of the pond until summer when it floats up to the surface, produces a whorl of fleshy leaves and a bright yellow flower.

Carnivorous?  Yup.  The underwater network of leaf-like stems contain tiny bladders.  Here’s the best explanation I found for how the bladders work, from the US Forest Service site listed below:

Hairs at the opening of the bladder serve as triggers, and when contacted, mechanically cause the trap to spring open, drawing in water and organisms like a vacuum. Enzymes and /or bacteria inside the traps aid in digestion.

Ain’t nature cool?

Bladderwort and Duckweed

Learn more:

5 thoughts on “Bladderwort

  1. Very cool. I am very interested in the locomotive mechanisms of plants because, without muscle sinew or nerves, they manage to move. I may write about the movement of Senisitve plants, venus flytraps, and this new find (for me) bladderworts on my own site this week. Thanks for the new topic.

  2. Wow That is pretty interesting. You learn something everyday.
    I’ll be on the lookout for this and when I tell whoever I am with this interesting info, they will think I am sooo knowledgable!! Hehehe.
    Have a great day

  3. Pingback: Science & Soul: « Science & Soul

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