Pinguicula X 'Titan'

A New Cultivar of CP
Produced at the CSUF
Biological Sciences Greenhouse


Pinguicula X 'Titan'

Pinguicula X 'Titan' is named after the nickname (verbal icon) for California State University, Fullerton. The name was chosen because of the large size the plant can reach. At its maximum extent, the leaves can hang over a six inch pot. This hybrid was created at California State University, Fullerton's Biological Sciences Greenhouse Complex by Leo C. Song, Jr. on 17 July 1987 using P.agnata-CSUF (fragrant form) as the seed parent and P. sp. collected by David Verity near Guanajuato, Mexico in 1975 as the pollen parent. It may be P. macrophylla.
The pollen parent forms a hibernaculum below the surface of the ground, sometimes at a depth of over 1/2 inch depending on the hardness of the growing medium. Flowers of the pollen parent are similar in form to P. gypsicola. P. X 'Titan' also forms a large subterranean hibernaculum during a relaltively short dormant period. The leaves resemble more the pollen parent in having a longer and more pronounced petiole than the seed parent, P. agnata. However, the flower shape definitely favors the seed parent, but the blue edges have been replaced with an even magenta glow. A slight fragrance is also noted. So far, the P. agnata we have been using is the only fragrant ping we have. The actual taxonomic status of this plant is still uncertain.


Hibernaculum beginning to grow. Note how center leaves look like a head of cabbabge. Also, the last summer-type glandular leaves are dying. Due to the more firm nature of the growing media, the hibernaculum is not totally buried.



Hibernaculum has fully opened. Note remnants of previous growing season's leaves. The outer new leaves, which are thick and non-glandular, but with coarse white hairs on the top surface. These leaves are ideal propagation material. For an idea of size, the larger gravel-like white "pebbles" are pieces of coarse perlite and are about 1/4 inch long. The grains of sand are silica sand #20 mesh.

'Titan' is very vigorous and is quite easy to grow. We use a general mix for carnivorous plants (CP) to which a bit of dolomite and gypsum is added. A 2 inch layer of perlite is placed at the bottom of the pot for added drainage and enhanced aeration. At Cal State, it is growing under lights and natural lighting through a west window in the unheated headhouse.
Currently, P. X 'Titan' is being sold by Booman Floral of Vista, California from clonal material distributed before this name was chosen, as the "Starfish Plant" at nurseries, such as Home Depot. In stores, it outlasts all other CP, flowering in bag after the Venus' Fly Traps, sundews, and North American pitcher plants have died.

titan flower

Close-up of flower of Pingucula X 'Titan' which are slightly fragrant. the small notch on the upper right petal is atypical.

The official registration of this cultivar will be published with a more formal description in the Carnivorous Plant Newsletter (CPN), the official organ of the International Carnivorous Plant Society, Inc. (ICPS), which is the official registration authority of carnivorous plant cultivars.


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Revised 26 August 1999