Nepenthes x Miranda (Asian Pitcher Plant, Monkey Cups)

This hybrid pitcher plant has interesting modified leaves adorned with a red “mouth” and mottled scarlet blotches inside the traps. Each has two parallel rows of soft, tiny spines that run down the front of it. Certain Nepenthes, additionally, are vines that produce tendrils to more easily capture light.

Nepenthes x Miranda (Asian Pitcher Plant, Monkey Cups)
Family: Nepenthaceae
Subspecies: hybrid ‘Miranda’, many cultivars have been produced through extensive hybridization
Native: southern hemisphere, tropical Pacific Islands
Hardiness Zones: 10b-11
Height: may climb as high as 2-3 meters from the soil, vine
Diameter: spreads to 1 meter around, largely depends on environment
Root System: fibrous, poorly developed
Growth Rate: slow to moderate
Age: perennial
Deciduous: no
Monoecious/dioecious: dioecious
Monocot/dicot: dicot

Tolerates: wet, poorly-drained soil
Problems (major): regular gardening soil, non-distilled water, drying out (drought) – all fatal
Problems (minor): Some spiders may take up residence in the pitchers and the plant’s pray.
Poisonous: toxic to ingest, acid in traps harmful to consume
Soil requirements: consistently damp/wet peat or sphagnum moss, MUST be nutrient-poor (especially in Nitrogen)
Air requirements: requires constantly warm and humid conditions
Watering requirement: high
Sun requirement: full sun required
Carnivorous leaves: non-hooded (no flap, operculum) pitchers with a red “mouth” adorned with nectar glands, red splotches inside pitcher and two parallel rows of small, soft teeth on front, highly acidic fluid inside pitcher, to 15 centimeters tall and 8 centimeters wide
Non-trapping leaves: paddle shaped, thick central vein, light green, to 20 centimeters long), both begin as climbing tendrils
Flowering structure: long, arching flower stalks with several dozen tiny green-brown flowers, without petals
Flowering frequency: autumn (September)
Fruit: light, wind-dispersed winged seeds in clusters up to 500 per flowering stalk, to 30 mm long
Time required to consume prey: several hours
Habitat preference: sunny bogs with copious invertebrates
Common prey: small flying arthropods, occasionally small vertebrates
Notable characteristics:
The distinctive pitchers have fascinating morphology. Adding fertilizer will cause the plants to produce far less traps, and excesses may be fatal.

These are grown for their spectacular traps for aesthetic appeal and interest.

Sources used:

Both types of leaves at Southern Illinois Univeristy Carbondale
Flowers of another Nepenthes species
All of the images provided were taken by me. They may be used for educational/informational purposes only, provided that this article/online journal is appropriately cited first.


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