Christmas Bells

Christmas Bells
Christmas Bells - Blandfordia nobilis

Monday, October 10, 2011

Robertson Railway Festival and then some unusual Diuris variations,

Yesterday the good burghers of Robertson turned out in numbers for the annual Robertson Heritage Railway Station spring festival.
Of course, the gentlemen from the 
Berrima District Old Machinery Club Inc turned up. 
It wouldn't be a major event in Robbo without them.

Berrima District Old Machinery Club members (many from Robbo)

Miniature Steam Train riders.
And the band played on too.

And what would a Robertson Railway Fair be without Waratahs?
An unusual Waratah cultivar. Possibly "Fire and Brimstone".
After having a Roast Beef Roll, provided buy the RHRS volunteers, using freshly cooked beef from Mauger's Meats at Burrawang, I headed out to Fitzroy Falls, to check on some unusual Diuris which Alan Stephenson and I had found the previous day. 

They turned out to be Diuris chryseopsis
the so-called "Small Snake Orchid" 
(a fairly unfortunate name for a beautiful little Orchid). 
The flower has large "side lobes" on the labellum 
(click on the image to enlarge it)
pointed outwards, flanking the column.
Classic Diuris chryseopsis with fine black line markings
But what about this one?
A relatively tall, heavy flower.
The first of these Diuris plants we found.
 Here it is in close-up.
The "side lobes" on the labellum 
are very different to the previous flower.
They are held vertically, flanking the column.
Diuris with no black markings and really thick callus ridges.
And this one?
Kindly ignore the spots of rain on the petals.
It is a lovely, fresh, clear lemon yellow colour.
Tiny Diuris - without marks, and small "side-lobes", with dark edges.

I have no doubt that all these plants are related.
They are in an isolated community, 
well away from any other known colony of this Diuris.
So logic has it that we are simply looking at individual variations
between plants of the same species.

I conclude they are all Diuris chryseopsis.
I just wish they would not vary from the classic species description
(as per the first Diuris flower shown). 
It makes it hard for the Orchid chasers 
when plants don't follow the "rules".

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