Project Description

Pinguicula gigantea

You say “gigantea,” I say “gigantic.” Pinguicula gigantea lives up to its name as the largest known Mexican butterwort with a diameter of around one foot. This ping is easy-growing, and does well outdoors at the author’s Northern California residence. The plant was discovered in 1987 by Alfred Lau in Oaxaca, Mexico growing on sheer cliffs in direct sun. You’ll often find them sharing space with Tillandsias.

Unique biology of a Pinguicula gigantea

Trap characteristics

I like to refer to P. gigantea as the gnat destroyer. I mean, just look at the photo above. This butterwort has incredibly sticky glands on both the upper and under sides of leaves. These leaves maintain a pale green coloration, arch outwards and turn upwards around their edges.

Other notable characteristics

Pinguicula gigantea has beautiful violet flowers with purple venation. The plant’s leaves get smaller during winter dormancy forming a tighter rosette to conserve water, but will not turn truly succulent.

Other Butterwort species, varieties & hybrids