Christmas Bells

Christmas Bells
Christmas Bells - Blandfordia nobilis

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Late Summer Orchids are flowering their heads off.

We had a dry spring and summer, until it rained in late January (the result of a Tropical Cyclone washing down the NSW coast as am ex-cyclone). Locally, Carrington Falls had all but ceased to flow. Then it suddenly kicked back into gear. The groundwater is the important point here. Tiny Orchids need moisture in the soil, and if that is not there, the Orchids will not move.
I got 177 mm in 3 days in late January and 227 in 4 days in late February. The bush has bounced back.
And now the summer/autumn Orchids are blooming, whereas they were not even visible two weeks ago.

These little orchids, some as small as 50 cm (2 inches high) are often hard to find in the grass.
One tends to try to remember where they were last seen and to mark them with natural features, such as a couple of bits of broken tree branches, or small stones. Nothing too obvious, of course.
Corunastylis rufa
Red Midge Orchid.
Corunastylis fimbriata
Fringed Midge Orchid

Corunastylis sagittifera
Corunastylis densa

Speculantha parviflora
Tiny Greenhood - seeming the "Type"
of this confusing genus.
Brown form of Speculantha parviflora.
As yet not named as a separate species.
Close-up of brown form of
Speculantha parviflora (as yet un-named species)
Not the differences between this and the true species above.
  • gentle curved line of "sinus" (front of flower)
    it does not have the bulging front.
  • These flowers start out dark brown, almost black on top
  • They age to a brighter red colour on the hood.
    See this image of a tight group with old and fresh flowers
Lovely "Spiral Orchid"
Spiranthes australis
Nice triple-flowered specimen of
Eriochilus cucullatus
Close-up of Eriochilus cucullatus

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