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Sarracenia alata

Sweet Pitcher Plant

Plant Type:


Sarracenia alata – This is the Sweet Pitcher Plant. Golden green pitchers up to 2” wide with some red veining emit a sweet fragrance which entices insects to their doom. I haven’t noticed any fragrance – perhaps it would help if I were insectoid… but then I might fall in! Flowers are large and greenish gold. Sarracenia is clumping with moderate increase. Please see the Genus Overview below.


15-30 in


Yellow Green


(5 protected)6 to 9
What is my hardiness zone?
Item Description Price  
SARRALA Sarracenia alata (4 inch Square Press Fit Pot - 1.05 pints / 497 ml.) $18.00 Buy Now

Characteristics and Attributes for Sarracenia alata

Season of Interest (Flowering)

  • Spring

Season of Interest (Foliage)

  • Spring / Summer / Autumn

Nature Attraction

  • Insectivore


  • Morning Sun / Afternoon Shade
  • Full Sun


  • Potted Plant
  • Bog
  • Marginal

Growth Rate in the Garden

  • Moderately Fast


  • Sandy
  • Moist
  • Acid


  • Southeastern U.S.

Propagated By

  • Division

Genus Overview: Sarracenia

Common Name: Pitcher Plant

These are the fascinating Pitcher Plants. All are from eastern North America, most from Southeastern U.S. One species occurs in the north all the way up into Newfoundland in peat bogs, Sarracenia purpurea with USDA zone 4 hardiness... perhaps some populations hardy into zone 3. The spring and summer flowers which last for many weeks are as beautiful as they are fascinating. All species have evolved pitchers with passive pitfall traps… the insects enter but can’t back up due to downward facing hairs which disallow retreat. They are structurally curious and in their own unique way very beautiful. All require constantly moist to wet feet, boggy conditions suit them well or can be easily pot grown in 50% coarse sand to 50% peat mix. In a natural setting they can tolerate vernal flooding but for most of the year their crowns must be above the water line or they will rot… yes, I know: it’s hard to believe! Most of the literature tells you not to feed them and it is true that any chemical fertilizer should be avoided as these plants have little tolerance to salts. But you can use quarter strength fish emulsion on occasion and I mean only on occasion, not at every watering, and only during active growth. Potted plants must be re-potted every 2 years with a fresh mix of peat and coarse sand or they languish. They are easy to transplant and respond well to good treatment. Most prefer sun although I have found that S. purpurea seems particularly happy during the summer under the shade cloth in my greenhouse. That was a bit of a surprise as I’ve seen them growing in the bright open sunny conditions in the fantastic peat bogs of Nova Scotia. Generally I would say they need be planted in full sun in the north to to partly shaded exposure in the south. They make fascinating potted plants. All of the following are offered by division.