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2014 UK Orchids (1 Viewer)

Ghostly Vision

Well-known member
I have a few Irish sites if anyone wants to PM me.

They flower earlier in Ireland than in Scotland. Now -end of July for IE, early-mid August for Scotland.

The best site is Lough Beg in the North.

Sean
 

Ghostly Vision

Well-known member
Interesting Sean.

The bright violet sheathing leaf in the middle picture on post #877 (and the bright purple stem base on the left) are both on the mature plant shown in the 2 left pictures on post #859. I had taken that to be a Broad-leaved but....

The greener sheathing leaf on the right of post #877 comes from the plant in the middle and right of post #859.

Rich

Only a rubbish theory, already proven wrong, hahaha!

Overall, plants get greener as they develop, but I think the base of the stem is always purple on BLH, but it often needs the leaves or soil gently parting to be seen.
 

muba

Well-known member
At the same site was a small group of BLH that showed signs of self-pollination, much like GFH. None of the flowers were opening wide, unlike the others growing around and nearby, and the lower flower's ovaries were all showing signs of swelling, again unlike other BLH nearby. The plants involved all had the same flower colouration, while others in the same spot were clearly typical and had different colouration. Any opinions anybody?

Some more pictures of these which may or may not help. Cannot find a crumb of pollinia though.
 

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J Jones

Well-known member
As mentioned above, Narrow-lipped Helleborines looking great in Surrey right now though lots of casualties to hungry critters. I've put a few more shots on my Flickr page.

Thanks to AdrianW for info + tips.

Cheers,

Josh
 

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AdeKing

Member
Violet Helleborines at Fareham

I visited the old railway site at Fareham tonight to have a look for the Violet Helleborines. I wasn't expecting any to be in full flower, but there was one that was in fine condition right next to a well worn path down the embankment.

Thanks to Slatts for the grid reference in post #870, it was spot on.
 

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slatts

Well-known member
Four Marks violet helleborine

Xenya,

There is a good site for Green Flowered Helles just south of Newbury beside the A343. I counted c160 plants there last week (down on the 240 or so I counted last year). They still needed a week or 10 days to come into flower - but should be looking good next week.

The GFHs are on both verges of the road - mostly between the gateway (and small layby) into the National Trust's Chase nature reserve and the cross-roads to the South where the minor road to Penwood/Woolton Hill crosses the A343.

Take care if you visit. Wear a high-vis tabard or something as the road is a busy one!

As for Violet Helles - try Telegraph Lane and Blackberry Lane at Four Marks. There are usually several clumps on the verges there. Also the lane near the Garden Centre (I can't remember its name - Garth-something, I think).

Thanks for that tip Simon - I went down to Four Marks yesterday evening. The first thing you notice is it's really middle England. Everyone wants a mowed road verge. What is it with people? Why can't they just let the wild flowers grow in the summer and cut back at the end of the season? It makes me heartily sick to see road verges like bowling greens. Yechhhh!!! But thank heaven there are people who know that violet helleborines come up on the verges and take care of them as there were plenty to be seen. None by the Garthowen Garden Centre on Alton lane where they have cut their laurel hedges and just left them on the border to smother any helleborines that might be there. But back down Alton Lane you'll see nice clumps half way down on your right then near the end on your left. In Blackberry lane there are a nice few clumps at the top end on your left as you drive down from Telegraph Lane. Couldn't see any on Telegraph Lane - the verges have almost all been mowed to bowling green standard.
 

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slatts

Well-known member
Box Hill violet helleborines now

I have been going to visit two nice clumps of VH at Box Hill for some years now. One of the clumps is massive with perhaps twenty five spikes. When I went yesterday it was not there- gone. The whole area is completely smothered by brambles. I have told the NT warden about the clumps in the past and one would have thought that a little judicial pruning of a few square metres a couple of times a year would let in the light so the plants won't be smothered. One of the clumps now twisted and contorted is still there managing to survive in the brambles.
 

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slatts

Well-known member
Box Hill violet helleborines 2012

These were the photos I took of the massive clump of VH on 14 August 2012. Not even one spike was visible yesterday - all gone. I hope if the brambles are cut back the helleborines will return.
 

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Connor Rand

Norwich resident, Holme devotee
These are E. dunensis. Do you have more pics and site details?

Mark

Interesting... I did consider E. dunensis when I found them but but didn't recall the ones I'd seen previously (at the inland Lincs site) so I wrote them off as Broad-leaved. Looking at lit though it's clear that's they are this species. Wonder if it is a new site... Got some more photos (but struggling to get put them on here) and site details - PM me your email address and I'll send both over.
 

rmielcarek

Well-known member
A couple more plants now in flower. The original plant has quite a few open flowers now, including this aberration with a column but no lip to speak of and only 4 perianth segments - all the other flowers on the stem seem OK. I've seen flowers like this at this site before, on a different plant a few years ago.

Rich M

I had a better look at this plant today; some of the other flowers are aberrant as well - they have a lip OK but no petals so again only 4 perianth segments.

A look around found two other plants with a single flower with no lip and just 2 sepals and 2 petals.

I then found a plant that had a right collection with flowers with 3, 4, 5 and 6perianth segments in various combinations of lip, sepals and petals; it also had variegated leaves just to add to the madness.

Not sure what is going on but all of these were in an area of less than 10 square yards - in fact that is the only area of the site that has any plants in flower.

Rich M
 

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Ghostly Vision

Well-known member
Some more pictures of these which may or may not help. Cannot find a crumb of pollinia though.

Hi Steve

These look much more like standard cross-pollinated plants from these new photo's.

The pollinia looked to have been removed wholesale.

Shiny ovaries are a little curious though!

Sean
 

muba

Well-known member
Hi Steve

These look much more like standard cross-pollinated plants from these new photo's.

The pollinia looked to have been removed wholesale.

Shiny ovaries are a little curious though!

Sean

Not wishing to disagree with you Sean, but those ovaries are swelling very soon after or during flowering, especially when compared to other less remarkable plants on the site. The flowers have gone over very quickly too, compared with other plants there.
 

LizandDave

Well-known member
I found 54 VH spikes on the North Downs in North Kent the other day. Quite a surprise as I didn't know the site existed. However, it was known to the County Recorder but not this many in previous years.
Dave
 

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Ghostly Vision

Well-known member
Not wishing to disagree with you Sean, but those ovaries are swelling very soon after or during flowering, especially when compared to other less remarkable plants on the site. The flowers have gone over very quickly too, compared with other plants there.

Both very good indicators.

The complete lack of pollen anywhere on your photo's, especially in the anther, does indicate allogamy.

What was the pollination regime of nearby flowers comparatively?

Regards

Sean
 

Matthebirder

Well-known member
Thanks, I have a single day, 18 hours daylight! planned for these on 2 Aug. just hoping for a good day as it's going to be a long drive from Aberdeen to Cambridge via the sites!



Hi Matt,

Just in case you are over in Ireland, Irish Lady's Tresses are out in good numbers (quite early, first seen 6th July) in a few lakes in Co. Mayo, and small numbers on the lake we study (Lough Allen, Co. Leitrim).

Love to hear from other people who are interested in this orchid (and to know how they are doing in Scotland) as we are tring to record numbers and locations of the orchid in Ireland (hard to get around to all of the lakes!).

Regards,

Fran
LoughAllenBasin.com
 

muba

Well-known member
Both very good indicators.

The complete lack of pollen anywhere on your photo's, especially in the anther, does indicate allogamy.

What was the pollination regime of nearby flowers comparatively?

Regards

Sean

Last year I saw plenty of wasps visiting flowers at this site, and was a bit surprised to see none this year. Other plants are mainly still in flower or yet to open fully. The picture shows a typical plant there. No droop to the flowers, fully open, intact pollinia, no swelling.

But I suspect its not worth you visiting. May be all a red herring and may be too late now for a proper look.
 

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slatts

Well-known member
BLH Rownhams

The BLH at Rownhams are in danger of being strangled by brambles, poisoned by dogsh$te, and drowning in a sea of McDonalds coffee cups and Big Mac wrappers. Apart from the fact that someone dropped a few bags of sand and gravel right where they grow. Anyway, despite all adversity they do ok, even growing up through 50mm of compacted sand and gravel, although I thought the plants were fewer in number and smaller than previous years. They are going over now though. It's warm down on the M27 and they are almost a month earlier than last year. Here's a couple of photos the second one of which I have never seen before. The flowers seem to have been so dense around the head that it's fallen over with the weight. Anyone seen this before?
 

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slatts

Well-known member
BLH Sheepleas

Many thanks to Simon, Josh, and Adrian's map. Sheepleas must be surrounded by some of the most posh real estate in the country. Approaching the car park there are gated drives with video cameras and large mansions with names such as Chalk Barton, Greybeams and Waterside- dunno where the water is. Well these people love dog walking at Sheepleas but don't really love cleaning up after them. Perhaps they are not used to cleaning up. This is a really beautiful place with stunning beech woods and the BLH are probably the best stand I have ever seen, many large clumps and a large variation in colour. If you want sun on your plants you'll get it in the morning.
 

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slatts

Well-known member
Narrow leaved helleborine Sheepleas

Again many thanks to Simon, Josh, and Adrian's map. The NLH are in a glade under beech trees where there is a deep layer of leaf litter. There are more than I have ever seen at one location, and if you walk around you'll find a lot more plants that have either come up blind or have been chewed. I lucked out with the light- the sun came into the glade between 5 and 6 pm and picked out each plant one by one. After I left this site I found more blind plants also in beech leaf litter in another glade. It was only when I got home I realised that the last photo sadly has a flower with a split lip.
 

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slatts

Well-known member
photo extension tube found at Sheepleas

I found a photo extension tube at Sheepleas. If it belongs to anyone on the forum, or if anyone reads about such a lost item on any other forums please PM me.
 

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