Field of Science

Plant poaching

It always sounds a bit weird, but plant poaching does occur. The plants have to be sufficiently rare and desireable to be worth the effort. Things like the ghost orchid of the Everglades and the Venus fly-trap. Venus fly-traps only grow in boggy places near the Carolina coastal area of Wilmington. TPP saw some in Green Swamp, and this report makes it sound like they are none too safe from poaching even though the area is protected from development. Plants that only live in relatively small locales and in fairly restrictive habitats are always the most threatened in the wild. Whenever you consider buying such plants, do give a thought about whether or not the plants were grown ethically and not poached. TPP often asks native plant purveyors where they got their stock. But what a shame if cool little plants like this become extinct in the wild. Too bad there aren't any really big carnivorous plants, think little shop of horrors, that you could feed plant poachers to. TPP will return to this topic shortly as he just acquired a rare locally endemic Magnolia.

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