June is the month to see native Bristish orchids at their peak and around us the most abundant is Dactylorhiza fuchsii or the Common Spotted Orchid. Our seed grown plants in the Temperate section of the greenhouse are now in full flower (a week later than most years reflecting the cool start to the summer) and are magnificent.
We have two of our seed raised clones in flower at the moment, the light clone above and the dark clone below, which shows the fantastic diversity in the species.
We grow plants in large pots of soil based compost in our temperate section and the seed is from the Mendips where the species is common in old quarries such as Asham Quarry where it prefers the poor soils in the old quarry workings and scraped areas.
It is also common in remaining low nutrient unimproved limestone Mendip meadows and the nearby chalk downs of Wiltshire. It is even growing in the school car park where it grows in subsoil between the rows of cars.