Christmas Bells

Christmas Bells
Christmas Bells - Blandfordia nobilis

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Glossodia minor

This tiny blue-purple Orchid has started to flower down along Tourist Road, in Kangaloon. Such tiny flowers - I love them.

The name Glossodia minor means: "big-tongue orchid - (small one)". The official common name is "Small Wax-lip Orchid".
There is of course, a Glossodia major.

Here is one plant with my camera lens cap for scale
It happens to be growing out of a patch of old wood chips
dumped on the ground.
I usually use flash when taking close-up shots of Orchids - to get light inside the flower. It can cause distortions in colour, however. And few colours are as susceptible to colour distortion as these purple-blue flowers.
This is not a new phenomenon, as I remember my father complaining about colour reproduction on film (slides) for native plants, back in Melbourne, which dates my memory of that discussion back to pre-1959. Of course, he was talking about good old fashioned slides - way back before digital photograph was ever imagined. But we still have the same trouble.

I have done my best to show these plants as close as possible to their natural colours.
Here they are growing in their grassy habitat
on very poor yellow clay soil.
Even here, you can see a colour variation,
which I assume is to do with the age of the flowers.
Two of these little Glossodia flower growing side by side.
I assume that the one on the left, which is showing more purple
is in fact a fresher flower than the one on the right.
I have not adjusted the colour of this shot in any way.
Finally a portrait of a nice flower.
The colour is a little too bright.
But I wanted you to be able to see the details of the flower.
Click to enlarge the image.
The two "dogs balls" glands are scent glands
which attract pollinators to the flower.
If you enlarged the image you will know why
I have described those glands as I did.


Flabmeister said...

Very appropriate to use the term dog's balls in a family whose name derives from the Greek word for testicles! (Apparently a reference to the shape of the root!)

Denis Wilson said...

Hi Martin
Quite right in your comment.
Orchis means testicles in Greek.
Many of the ground Orchids have two rounded tubers, which sit below the base of the plant.

mick said...

Finally an orchid that I know! I saw similar in early August up here a couple of years ago. I love the color. Wonder why it is so hard for cameras to "see" it correctly?

Denis Wilson said...

Hi Mick
Glad that familiar to you.
Not sure about the "colour" issue. I shall ask some camera buffs I know.