Christmas Bells

Christmas Bells
Christmas Bells - Blandfordia nobilis

Saturday, January 26, 2008

More Orchids coming along

Firstly, let me say that Blogging has its rewards.
Today I was contacted by a lady in the Southern Highlands, with photos of an Orchid she had found at her place, and asking me to help identify it. Fortunately, I was able to help. Anyway, it is nice to know that people out there (who I do not even know) are checking my stuff on this blog, and that they feel as curious about the plants in their area (especially Orchids) as I do. I was pleased be able to assist this lady with identifying her plant.

As a matter of interest, her Orchid is a species which I have never seen - so I am jealous of her discovery!

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In my own neck of the woods, I am monitoring a new Greenhood plant which is just about to open.I have some guesses as to what it might turn out to be, but I cannot be sure until the flower opens properly. Clearly it is a Diplodium, (from the tall stem, with "stem leaves"). Then there is the obvious brownish red colour already visible. And the long curved "hood". The two "points" are just starting to separate from the main part of the flower. they will probably end up standing high over the flower. To see what I mean, compare this photo with the last photo (at the end of this post). Trouble is, sometimes Orchids become food for a passing Swamp Wallaby, so I have taken a few photos at this stage, in case it gets eaten before it opens. It has happened to me, before! As you can see from the photo above, the front of the flower has a distinct bulge, and the front of the flower is still closed. Until that part of the flower (the "sinus") opens up, and the "labellum" is visible, I really do not have enough information on which to identify this plant for sure. Also, the angle at which the entire "hood" ends up sitting is important. These plants start out vertical - in bud stage - and as they mature, some bend forwards, others always stay more horizontal.

Also I am monitoring a small group of Wasp Orchids in the same area. All I know is that I found these plants last year, just after they had been pollinated - and the flowers had closed over (these Chiloglottis species flowers close as soon as they have been pollinated, to protect the sensitive parts of the flower. So it was impossible for me to positively identify the species by photographing it. And, at that stage I was not experienced in identifying these tiny flowers (not that I claim that, yet) - but I am better placed this year than last year. So, I am looking forward to checking out my "guess" at identifying these plants (last year).

Chiloglottis (Sp???) - leaves and bud developing
And, what do I think my Greenhood (above) might turn out to be?
Well, possibly it will be the same as this plant. Maybe.There are definite similarities in form, and leaf bracts on the stem. But until this new flower matures, I will not know for sure. You can now see why I was talking about the angle at which the hood ends up sitting. This one is clearly bent very strongly forward - especially if you realise that the photo was taken with the stem bent slightly back beyond the vertical, so I could see into the "sinus" of the flower, so one could see the "labellum" inside - a critical identifying feature of Greenhoods.

I checked where I found the plant (above) last year, and the plants are there, and growing, but as yet, there is no sign of flowering stems, or buds. So, why is this new plant, which is in a very dark, sheltered spot flowering ahead of those other plants? And there is the issue of a very different habitat from this species, and the new plants. Maybe they are not the same species after all. Time will tell - provided the Swamp Wallabies do not interfere.


Joe said...

Awesome specimen!

Joe said...

Awesome Specimen!

Denis Wilson said...

Hi Joe.
Nice to have you drop by.
Anyone who has been to the 19th World Orchid Conference is welcome to visit my little Blog.

Glad you liked the Orchid. It has since opened, and is indeed the Waterfall Orchid, as I suspected.


Joe said...

Thank you.

Please feel free to check out my blog. It is new and has a variety of photographs.

I have visited many parks and reserves here where our native orchids grow; however, they are not as colorful as the specimen from a rain forest or more tropical climate.

Being that you are from Australia (and I have not looked at all of your posts), Do you have any shots of Cockatoos? I love them!

I will place you link on my site a reference to explore later today!

Joe said...


I am new the the world of blogging. Please check out my site.

I have shots that I have not loaded of our native orchids ;however, they are not as colorful as the species from a rain forest or more tropical area.

I have placed your site on my links on my blog to further read; however, do you have any shots of Cockatoos or other parrot species? I love parrots, but do not have the time that it takes to properly care for one!

I look forward to reading more of your site this weekend.

Denis Wilson said...

Hi Joe

I have some photos of our local Black Cockatoos, and regular Sulphur Crested Cockatoos. Not many of those, as they are not common here. Use the labels on the right-hand side to take you there. Black Cockatoo and Cockatoo are linked separately.
The Black Cockatoos are huge - as large as Macaws, but not colourful (dark brown). Make a weird wailing call, which is linked on my most recent posting about them.

Your blog looks very good. Quite varied subjects too, I see.

Best wishes