Images of a plant known as the ‘penis flytrap’ went viral in March 2019. The name is a pun on the plant Venus flytrap (Dionaea muscipula), the name of which could be an oblique reference to the plant’s likeness to human female genitalia.
Despite the fact that the image’s origin (see full version below) is unknown, Snopes conducted a fact check and determined that the shot is genuine and depicts the plant in question. They even inquired about the photograph with Clinton Morse, the living plant collections manager at the University of Connecticut’s Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, who responded as follows:
“It is certainly a Nepenthes species and certainly looks like an authentic image. All Nepenthes have a similar passive pitfall trap that develops with a closed trap, and as the trap matures the ‘lid’ opens up. The pitchers in the attached image are just starting to open thus giving them a rather penile appearance. I’ve never heard of them being called ‘penis fly trap,’ but it is a rather accurate descriptive name.”
As a result, the photographs are most likely of Nepenthes philippinensis, a tropical pitcher plant that is only found in the Philippines. It grows at 0–600 meters (2,000 feet) above sea level on Palawan and the neighboring Calamian Islands (including Busuanga, Coron, and Culion) and Linapacan.
When the pit trap is fully matured and the lid is opened, the plant becomes less phallic-looking (as opposed to the phase that some commenters have dubbed “penile”). According to a 1999 assessment of the genus’ carnivorous habit, the open trap fills with water to entice insects that fall into it, with the plant scavenging the nutrients in the decaying carcasses.
So, if you explore and discover the highlands and islands of the Philippines, there’s a good possibility you’ll stumble across this plant — in either phase.
But this is something you wouldn’t want to miss:
This Phallic-Looking Object Is Indeed a Real Plant Growing in the Philippines|Earthly Mission