Christmas Bells

Christmas Bells
Christmas Bells - Blandfordia nobilis

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Orchids - Flying Ducks and Leek Orchids, as well as Bird Orchids

I have seen and shown these all before, but some things are of interest about these.

Firstly, the Flying Duck Orchids are very early in my experience.
These ones are flowering in an area which National Parks Service managed to burn last year. I have never seen them here before, so put that down as a beneficial side-effect of a "controlled burn".

Flying Duck Orchid
has the best name imaginable.
It is officially Caleana major, named after a Mr Caley,
but Botanical Latin does not allow the letter "Y".

head -on shot of the Flying Duck Orchid.
Its black "beak" is facing you.

the Short-lipped Leek Orchid
Prasophyllum brevilabre
These are also flowering in an area which was burnt
by NPWS.

The rare and endemic Wollongong Bird Orchid
It is not found in Wollongong,
but rather, up on the Budderoo Plateau.
It is described as being located in the general "Knights Hill" area
but as Knights Hill is a basalt intrusion
through the Sandstone Plateau, with rainforest habitat,
even that locator is misleading.
This area is adjacent to the better known Barren Grounds.
As with the Barren Grounds, it is a classic Sandstone heathland habitat.
You can see the white sand grains in the photo.

Another Chiloglottis chlorantha in flower.
The vast majority of these rare plants
on the Budderoo Plateau were burnt last September
But they appear to have survived.
These two flowers were in an unburnt patch.
Some of those which were burnt
are budding up, but the unburnt ones
are flowering much earlier than any burnt ones.

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