I have just returned for a bogging trip with Jim Millar. We spent two days traversing the gulf coast from Tallahassee to Mobile. It is hard to describe what a thrill it was to see the places I had only read about and see plants in their natural habitats. Yes, it was hot. Yes, there were ticks but, that was little to suffer compared to the stunning images and memories I now have. (not to mention the digital photos) I will also have the video and know that I was there seeing the same things that are on the tape. There were sad points as well: arriving at a place that use to be populated with thousands of plants only to find a few survivors barely hanging on due to the road side being scraped, sprayed with herbicide or over grown. There was more than once I wanted to drop a lit match to help things out. Many areas were in need of a good burn. #### that Smokey the Bear! The Yellow River site was totally decimated by herbicide application. I dare say we found 10 or 15 plants total and they were barely hanging on back in the shadows. The most stunning area we visited was just north of Mobile. There were extensive stands of leucophylla, rubra, alata all over lapping one another with smatterings of psittacenias and invisible purpureas. We saw hybrids but no purpurea plants so, we know they were there somewhere. The hybrid crosses were some of the most stunning plants I have ever seen. The ingression was so extensive that I could not tell what the original species were. On another sad note, one of the most beautiful stands was just off the side of the road, enormous psittacenia 'golf-ball-ensis', Pinguicula lutea and, Droseras grew to the road's edge while less than a 1/4 of a mile up the road the highway department was marching steadily forward widening the road to be four lanes. The progress seemed inevitable as did the destruction of these plants. The most beautiful stand, and the stand that gave me the best picture as to what a sarracenia savanna must have looked like, was up a dirt road on private land. There wire grass and open pines stretched as far as you could see. The sarracenia grew in large mixed colonies of several species that had all inner breed producing a rainbow of colored lids and tubes. I sure if we had looked we would have found more 'islands' of plants scattered through this wood. This site seem secure for now. We then traveled south to a privately own bog that was an amazing place where we knew without a doubt that the plants would be protected. Jim has just begun on this video. He plans more trips to be able to fully document this incredible species of plants through the seasons. A trip in March will get them in flower, another in May will get them with pristine pitchers and in full glory and that should complete the video. I hope to have a page up soon to post some of the amazing photos for you to see. Jim is working on a short clip that can be sent out as well. My order has already been placed. A great deal of time and effort has already gone into this project and I cannot begin to imagine how much more time and energy Jim will put into this. Fifty dollars hardly seems enough and I would not be surprised if the price does not go up as the project continues. I assure you the project will continue. Jim is passionate about documenting these plants and I will help all that I can. At the risk of sounding like an infomercial, buy now before the prices go up!
I remain a man obsessed with a species,
Brooks Garcia, Atlanta