The Illawarra Branch of the Australasian Native Orchid Society had scheduled a trip to the Southern Highlands on Saturday, which troubled me, somewhat, as some of the local Orchids had been underwater, literally, for two weeks, and had no flowers left to see. Many other "autumn Orchids" had come and gone in February. What to show them?
We stuck with the plan and went to Budderoo to see the Mecopodum striatum plants out there. I had been able to show those plants to the Canberra Native Plant Society people the week before. This time, however, after three warm days in the middle of the week, most of those Orchids had finished too. We did see a few, however.
Then we set off for The Gib, where I was confident we would find some of the Scarlet Greenhoods (Diplodium coccinum) which grow there in dense ferns and long grass (under Eucalypt forest cover). It is always relatively hard work finding these plants, despite their relatively bright colour, because their flower heads are often buried amongst the grasses and ferns (or barely protruding),
growing amongst Maidenhair Ferns
A beautifully formed flower
These flowers grow progressively more reddish as they age.
|From the front you can see the fine "tip" and|
the points or "ears"
held out at a shallow angle on this
also growing on The Gib, with the
Diplodium coccinum plants