Christmas Bells

Christmas Bells
Christmas Bells - Blandfordia nobilis

Sunday, November 03, 2013

Kangaloon Sun Orchid - a few flowers this spring.

With the unseasonably warm and dry weather, many local Orchids have flowered early.

I just remembered this fact yesterday, and rushed to Tourist Road to check for signs of Thelymitra kangaloonica. I found only one plant with open flowers, but it was indeed the endemic Kangaloon Sun Orchid.
Kangaloon Sun Orchid in situ
adjacent to the road edge.
I returned to the site today, to gain a clearer photo of a fresher flower (on the same plant), as the first photo I took yesterday was a slightly marked specimen.

Close-up of Thelymitra kangaloonica.
This plant is known in some documents as:
Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) Vic.

I have previously published about the listing of this species on the EPBC Act, as a threatened species. And in 2009 the local branch of ANOS got permission to enter the SCA Special Area, and we found lots of plants in flower, in that year.

But today I wish to record that they have flowered again, this year. Indeed they may well have flowered early (which would fit with the hot dry weather experienced so far this season) as I found a number of large Sun Orchid stems growing amongst the rushes in another wet area, about a kilometre from Butler's Swamp. This species is known to grow in this second location. These stems carried finished flowers, some apparently successfully pollinated. But as they were finished flowers I cannot vouch for their identity (species).

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