Drosera rotundifolia

Carnivorous plant of peat bogs

Drosera rotundifolia roundleaf sundew

Plant grows in the wild/spontaneouslyPlant is native to PA

The flowers of this native, perennial species are not as spectacular or colorful as the leaves. These leaves are found in a rosette at the base of the plant. Each leaf is small and round—about 0.75 inches across. They are on slender stalks and are covered with reddish glandular hairs that secrete a sticky liquid that forms what appear to be dewdrops. The red color and the sugary liquid attract small insects. The sticky liquid traps these insects and the tentacles then curve inwards further trapping the insect. The carnivorous plant then secretes enzymes to digest insects for their mineral content - primarily nitrogen from proteins. This makes up for the poor level of nutrient minerals found in their habitat. The leaves are also photosynthetic like other plants.

The flowers are white or pink and form in a one-sided cluster. The flowers have 5 petals and are 1/3 to ¼ inch in diameter. They open one at a time. The plant grows 4-9 inches high and is found in acidic or peaty bogs throughout northern North America (south in the mountains) as well as northern Europe and Asia. The blooming period is June to August. During winter the plant forms a hibernaculum to survive the cold conditions. This consists of a bud of tightly curled leaves at ground level. This species is also called the common sundew. The plant can be cultivated indoors but needs a long period of winter dormancy to survive.

Contributed by: Mark Welchley

Occasional in sphagnum bogs and peaty edges.

Present throughout the state.

Range: Found througout northern North America.

Wetland codes
EMP: OBL
NCNE: OBL



Flowers June through August.

S-rank:  No rank
G-rank:  G5 (Secure)

Drosera rotundifolia roundleaf sundew

Plant grows in the wild/spontaneouslyPlant is native to PA
Drosera rotundifolia gallery
Plant Life-Form
perennial forb
Common Names
roundleaf sundew round-leaved sundew