Drosera aliciae

South Africa


Drosera aliciae, the Alice sundew, is a very common species in cultivation. It's native to the Cape Provinces of South Africa.

Etymology: Drosera from Greek droseros ‘dewy’1. Aliciae comes from Alice Rasse. Raymond Hamet (1890-1972) published the first description of this sundew in the "Journal de Botanique", giving it its Latin name. In a footnote - appropriately in those days in Latin - he writes that he's named it in honor of Dr Alice Rasse, who had encouraged him to study this 'section' of the sundew family2.

The plants form a flat rosette of quite slender leaves with a diameter of about 6 - 8 cm (a bit over 2.3 - 3.1 inches). The leaves tend to be quite long and are slightly tapered, which means they start out slim and get broader at the end. The broad end of the leaf has a slight dimple. D. aliciae had 2 types of tentacles, the general ones that cover most of the leaf, and type 2 tentacles are only found at the leaf tips in a single row and usually lie flat on the ground if the plant itself is ground-level. The dead leaves form a 'skirt' on the ground that support the new growth. This way D. aliciae can grow tens of centimetres in the air.

The flower stalk starts in the centre of the plant and later migrates to the side.


The D. aliciae flowers are relatively big (1,5 cm or 0.6-inch in diameter) compared to other species like D. nidiformis, natalensis or capensis. They're bright pink, almost a neon pink under bright lights with sometimes a dark ring in the middle, and have 5-6 petals. The stamens are a lot shorter than the pistil and they are the same height or higher than over the ovary.

The pistil is divided into 3-4 styles, which are each split at the base into two. Every split style again splits into two stigmas at the tip.

Every flower only stays open for a few hours, even under artificial lights and is self-pollinating.


Drosera aliciae seeds are relatively long. They have a long point at both ends and no clear dark middle. One side is a bit more transparent than the middle and the other end. This causes one side to show a little bit more yellow. The dark side is often a little twisted. The seeds contain a brick- or fishnet pattern on the outside.