Archive for the 'Orchids in the Wild' Category

The Surprising Putty Root Orchid

Tuesday, July 6th, 2021

Thanks so much to my friend Carola, who has generously let me post her photos of Putty Root Orchids near her home in Virginia. She’s taken pictures over the seasons, so they illustrate a year in the life of this extraordinary North American species. These orchids boast handsome leaves with alternating green and silvery-white pinstripes. […]

Wild Orchids of Sichuan, China

Monday, November 23rd, 2020

Want to take a magical orchid vacation without the hassles of travel? Settle in for three video tours from Botany Boy. China’s Sichuan province is one of the world’s biodiversity hotspots, and its fabled mountains are full of remarkable orchids. These videos include basic info about these spectacular wild beauties, so you’ll know what you’re […]

The Deceptive Ways of the Calypso Orchid

Saturday, June 27th, 2020

In Defense of Plants exposes The Deceptive Ways of the Calypso Orchid. This dainty, charming species grows in northern forests of North America, Europe, and Asia, where it’s pollinated by bumblebees. The bees are attracted by the orchid’s sweet fragrance, yellow hairs on the flower lip which mimic pollen, and nectar spurs. But the yellow […]

More Native Colorado Orchids

Saturday, September 14th, 2019

It’s always a pleasure to see orchids growing happily in the wild. During a recent family hike in Colorado’s San Juan National Forest, we spotted a couple of native orchid varieties. The first three rows of photos show the charming Goodyera oblongifolia, or Western Rattlesnake Plaintain. It’s named for its reticulated leaves which resemble snakeskin. […]

Native Colorado Orchids in Bloom

Saturday, August 17th, 2019

Orchids are not just denizens of the tropics; they live almost everywhere in the world. Even the high elevations of Colorado’s Four Corners region host many native species. Two of them are shown here: the Fairy Slipper, or Calypso bulbosa, and the Bog Orchid, or Platanthera. My mother-in-law took these photos in early July while […]

Orchids for Summer

Friday, June 21st, 2019

Celebrate today’s summer solstice with this wonderful Irish Marsh Orchid, blooming last week in County Kerry. This species is native only to the Emerald Isle. In the Irish language, it’s called Magairlin gaelach. The intense colors and spotted patterns on the flower lip rival the showiness of many better-known tropical cousins. These European terrestrial species can […]

A Bucket Orchid’s Trap

Wednesday, June 5th, 2019

National Geographic Wild has captured extraordinary footage of Bucket Orchids and bees. Coryanthes, or Bucket Orchids, have evolved intricate traps, complete with scented lures and dripping faucets, to detain their pollinators. While trying to gather the flower’s fragrant oils, the bees slip into a bucket of liquid, and can only escape by squeezing past the […]

How to Identify Native British Orchids

Saturday, May 18th, 2019

British orchid lovers will enjoy this guide from BBC Wildlife Magazine to help identify native orchids. It shows 10 different species, ranging from Common Spotted Orchids to Lizard Orchids to Bee Orchids. There are details about where each is found, and their key distinguishing features.

Yes, There Are Orchids in Iceland

Monday, August 13th, 2018

In a chilly, windy July rain, near a trail with a long name, in between glaciers with longer names, orchids bloom in southern Iceland. Orchids near the Arctic Circle? In fact, orchids live just about everywhere on earth, including Iceland, which is home to seven native species. Two of them are shown here. The Heath […]

Rare Australian Orchids Thrive Despite Harsh, Dry Winter

Wednesday, August 8th, 2018

Western Australia’s south coast is suffering through an exceptionally dry winter, but some rare native orchids are thriving anyway. Local orchid lovers are finding Queen of Sheba Orchids and other fascinating Australian natives despite the drought. With underground tubers to store water, these little terrestrials can handle some adversity. Orchid enthusiast Robert Tozer noted “Only about […]