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2014 UK Orchids (1 Viewer)

Connor Rand

Norwich resident, Holme devotee
Hi all, I'm off to the New Forest for the first time this weekend. If anyone has some gen they wouldn't mind PMing me, especially about species I won't have seen before (being from Norfolk), I'd really appreciate it.
 

Kumba

Active member
Warwickshire Orchids

Marsh Helleborine Var. ochroleuca
 

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ionh

Well-known member
Cruising the M40

Dry Sandford Pit: marsh helleborines in good flower, though still on the way in. Lots of common spots still in good nick. Southern damselfly (best if you have someone knowledgeable to show you one in the hand!)

Aston Rowant, lots of frogs jumping around - i marked 30 or so with sticks to give anyone else going there a head start. Common spots there are distinctly on the way out, but abundant pyramidal looking good.
 

rmielcarek

Well-known member
On the general point of varietal names, I personally think that many of them are worthless. Orchids, perhaps more than any other family of plants in Britain, have attracted the same micro-scrutiny that the Victorians gave butterflies, whereby they named every little mutation and the butterfly collectors then set out to add them to their cabinets. Some orchid varieties are very distinct and worthy of a name (e.g. some of the Bee Orchid vars), and some are of biological interest, or have a big impact of identification (e.g. the various varieties of Green-flowered Helleborine, which may shed light on self-pollination vs cross-pollination). But, if you look hard enough you can find every stage of gradation between an extremely well-marked and richly coloured Heath Spotted Orchid and one with an all-white flower (and see Sean's earlier post on Frog Orchids). I wish now that I had not mentioned var. leucantha!

I'm glad to hear that Simon favours keeping varietal names for distinctive Bee orchids. |=)|

Maybe we should consider reviving var aurita Moggridge. This is supposed to have long green petals that are rolled down at the edges so look narrow.

Although some authorities say this is supposedly common I can't say I see it very often, in fact looking back through all my photos of Bees from various sites I could only find two that appearred to qualify. Short green petals are scarce but long ones seem hard to find. Do others regularly see this form?

Having said that I found what I took to be one locally last week.

Rich M
 

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rmielcarek

Well-known member
Sounds like an epigenetic effect is occurring in the flowers development. Basically in the cells producing the pollinia, the gene(s) involved in its pigmentation have been switched off, whereas the cells producing the coloured spots still have active pigmentation pathways. Often methylation of DNA is the root cause.

Ian, given you obviously understand the process by which flowers turn out looking the way they do, I'd be interested in your thoughts as to what gives rise to aberrant flowers on a stem of otherwise normal flowers. I'm not talking about things like pelorism but examples where one flower is just totally aberrant.

I attach an example, albeit a somewhat extreme one; the other two flowers were pretty standard except for the sepaloid petals. I'm now waiting to see what the top bud turns out like!

The site is an old lead mine from Roman times; are pollutants in the soil likely to impact flower development (but why then just one flower, not them all?)

Rich M
 

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leptochila

Well-known member
I'm glad to hear that Simon favours keeping varietal names for distinctive Bee orchids. |=)|

Maybe we should consider reviving var aurita Moggridge. This is supposed to have long green petals that are rolled down at the edges so look narrow.

Although some authorities say this is supposedly common I can't say I see it very often, in fact looking back through all my photos of Bees from various sites I could only find two that appearred to qualify. Short green petals are scarce but long ones seem hard to find. Do others regularly see this form?

Having said that I found what I took to be one locally last week.

Rich M

That form is pretty common at my local site near Wolverhampton although I don't have any good pictures that really give that impression! These photos do however show off the greeness of the petals on one plant and the sheer length of the petals on the other.

Mike
 

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prevell

Member
Frogs at Aston Rowant

Dry Sandford Pit: marsh helleborines in good flower, though still on the way in. Lots of common spots still in good nick. Southern damselfly (best if you have someone knowledgeable to show you one in the hand!)

Aston Rowant, lots of frogs jumping around - i marked 30 or so with sticks to give anyone else going there a head start. Common spots there are distinctly on the way out, but abundant pyramidal looking good.

Is that on Bald Hill or Linky Down?

Peter
 

slatts

Well-known member
Aston Rowant pyramidals

Aston Rowant today was alive with orchids. First of all these pyramidals overlooking the busy M40. Every time I go up there I imagine how quiet it must have been without the M40 there, and how cheapskate we are in this country to destroy the country with these massive cuttings when we could have tunnelled. Likewise Twyford Down. Anyway despite the constant hum of the M40 these flowers are doing very well up there- there are thousands of them and quite a few different colourations.
 

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slatts

Well-known member
Aston Rowant frogs 1

Thanks to the directions supplied by Tony I saw a huge number of frog orchids today at Aston Rowant. At Tony's site there were about 50 or so. Quite a bit of colour variation- some really deep red, but size wise they were bigger than most anything I had seen before, some getting up to 140mm. I thought i'd take a look around the site which is not vast and see if there were any more and within about ten minutes I found a colony to the north of Tony's patch with more than 50 more plants, some excellent groups and equally large plants.
 

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slatts

Well-known member
Aston Rowant frogs 2

It was a really superb late afternoon frogging, and I wasn't finished as there's another site I know to the west of here where Ian has been recently too. Thanks for the sticks Ian. About 50 frogs, but it's much more exposed here, the plants are very small and slender and about as many as I saw here last year. With Red Kites soaring overhead I thought I'd give bird photography a go and snapped this one, my first ever bird photo on Bird Forum. The frog/common spotted hybrid didn't come out this year unfortunately but here is what it looked like this time last year.
 

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dsskipper

Member
clt

Just opening

I am new to this forum but I have been following it for some time. I am really keen to see CLT in Norfolk this weekend, but I hear that they are quite difficult to find at the well-known site. Does anyone have any information they can share?

Many thanks in advance!
 

ladybee

Well-known member
Is this just a deformed Bee?

deformed Bee.jpg

Is this just a deformed Bee orchid - sorry, I know it's not a great photo.
 

rmielcarek

Well-known member
View attachment 503998

Is this just a deformed Bee orchid - sorry, I know it's not a great photo.

Interesting! Not sure what I'm seeing but it appears to have white sepals, white sepaloid petals and a lip that is half labellum, half white sepal with some darker blotches on it; is that correct? If so it's pretty aberrant.

It would be good to get a close up, front on photo of the flower to document what is actually going on.

Rich M
 

ladybee

Well-known member
Interesting! Not sure what I'm seeing but it appears to have white sepals, white sepaloid petals and a lip that is half labellum, half white sepal with some darker blotches on it; is that correct? If so it's pretty aberrant.

It would be good to get a close up, front on photo of the flower to document what is actually going on.

Rich M

Hi Rich M,

Unfortunately it isn't my photo and I haven't seen said plant - but it is growing at a site with lots of Flavescens (I have posted a photo of one of those #650) so I thought it might be an aberrant one of those.
Anne
 

rmielcarek

Well-known member
Hi Rich M,

Unfortunately it isn't my photo and I haven't seen said plant - but it is growing at a site with lots of Flavescens (I have posted a photo of one of those #650) so I thought it might be an aberrant one of those.
Anne

Hi Anne

well that would explain the white sepals. And yes it seems to be an aberrant Bee orchid.

However the petals look very large and sepaloid, which is odd in itself, but not unknown.

What looks really strange is the lip but I can't really see what is going on, it looks normal down the left hand side (right when you look at it) but the other side seems to be just white with a couple of blotches of dark.

Very odd.

Rich
 
Dark Red Hells coming into flower at Bishop Middleham, one or two fully out but lots of buds to open yet. Plenty of Marsh Fragrant also.
Chris
 

IJS

Well-known member
Ian, given you obviously understand the process by which flowers turn out looking the way they do, I'd be interested in your thoughts as to what gives rise to aberrant flowers on a stem of otherwise normal flowers. I'm not talking about things like pelorism but examples where one flower is just totally aberrant.

I attach an example, albeit a somewhat extreme one; the other two flowers were pretty standard except for the sepaloid petals. I'm now waiting to see what the top bud turns out like!

The site is an old lead mine from Roman times; are pollutants in the soil likely to impact flower development (but why then just one flower, not them all?)

Rich M

Hi Rich
I saw this message earlier on this evening when travelling home on a very boring train journey, so have had a little bit of time to think what *might* be happening. Its a great question!

The bottom line is that I cannot give a definitive answer, but it is likely to be related to gene expression in the flowers development being disrupted by one of a number of possible causes:
  1. transposons jumping in (or out) of the genome disrupting gene expression,
  2. methylation changes regulating gene expression,
  3. gene silencing mechanisms,
  4. Other mechanisms.

All these can affect gene expression locally which could have a direct affect on inhibiting development pathways ultimately leading to deformation of a flower during its development. It should also be noted that it could also be caused by genes being switched on 'at the wrong time'. Again impacting on plant development pathways.

I think this is all fascinating science myself.

Ian
 

fgrsimon

Well-known member
Does anyone know of sites for Marsh Helleborine and Green Flowered Helleborine in Gloucestershire?

I think these two would give me all Orchid species that one could reasonably expect to see in my home county. Excluding one off's like Early Spider Orchid or subject to boundary changes like Man Orchid.

As an interesting aside, which county has the most Orchid species? My guess would be Kent or Glos.
 

slatts

Well-known member
The M3 fen

How does this remnant survive? Wedged in between the noisy M3 and the A30 this old fen is as wet as it's ever been this year. The common spotted are as tall as any I've ever seen, there are still a few good ones but mostly going over. As are the southern marsh which display a variety of colour, they are much taller than the stocky plants you'll see in Sandwich, maybe 450mm. I've seen hybrids here in the past but not today.There's the narrow leaved marsh orchid or maybe it's called something else now. The marsh helleborine is plentiful but difficult to see in the mass of increasing coarse marsh grass. The star of the show at the moment for me is the marsh fragrant which are plentiful and coming. There are some tall specimens too. A great little site.
 

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