After recent orchid safaris to the Himalayas and Rwanda it is now time to explore the orchid habitats of England. A really special spot is the Hartslock reserve in Oxfordshire and on Wednesday evening we headed there to find some really rare British native orchids.
This site has our nearest population of Monkey Orchids, Lady Orchids and the recently appeared hybrid between the two which we like to call Ladymonkeys.
Have a look at the photos and you can see the characters of the parent species coming through wonderfully in the hybrid.
Here is the Monkey Orchid. Can you spot how it got its name?
Next the Lady Orchid in her flowing dress.
Now the hybrid.
The reserve is amazing and we found three other orchid species; Twayblade, White Heleborine and Common Spotted Orchid. Rare non-orchids included the fabulous Pasque flower. Quite an evening.
Here’s another amazing orchid we are hoping will still be out for the Three Counties Show. It is Guarianthe skinneri, national flower of Costa Rica and surely one of the most beautiful members of the Cattleya family.
We are starting to get excited about our next big public event, which is the Three Counties Show at Malvern on the 14th, 15th and 16th of June. It should be an amazing event, and we are hoping to have some amazing plants like our big Myrmecophila tibicinis.