Sunday, July 04, 2010

Bruce Peninsula orchids

I finally made it up to the Bruce Peninsula over the summer solstice weekend in June. As I suspected, it was a little too late to see the yellow ladyslippers in full bloom. They usually peak at the end of May during the Bruce Peninsula Orchid Festival. However, I was lucky enough to find one still in partial bloom. I was up on the Bruce for the orchid festival back in 2008, and it was like orchid heaven in terms of the yellow ladyslippers in bloom everywhere!

I still managed to spot five different species of orchids on this last trip, and that was without much effort at all, in fact, all within the campground we were staying at! Sightings included more helleborines (Epipactis helleborine) than I could count (not yet in bloom), a few patches of Goodyera oblongifolia (not yet in bloom), patches of Striped coralroot (Corallorhiza striata, almost finished blooming), one solitary Alaska orchid (Piperia unalascensis, flowers not yet open), and one Yellow ladyslipper (Cypripedium calceolus, never sure if it's the large or small variety, but apparently the large variety (pubescens) come into bloom earlier than the small variety (parviflorum)).

I used the orchid checklist for the area as well as the very useful A guide to the orchids of the Bruce and Grey Counties, Ontario for identifications. Unfortunately, I left my Bruce orchid field guide at home that weekend, but I've looked up the orchids I saw and the only one I'm not sure about is the Alaska orchid.

Happy summer orchid hunting!


At 9:23 a.m., Anonymous Sarah said...

So pretty! I want to go out to Long Island to look for wild orchids sometime. I don't think I've ever seen an orchid in the wild before.

At 9:22 p.m., Blogger Bort said...

Hi all! I am an Australian botanist and orchid enthusiast, visiting the US for the first time. I have just arrived in Boston and am here for only 3 days, but am wondering if anyone has good ideas on where I might get out to and find some native orchids in the area? Bearing in mind that I am limited to public transport from Boston :s
Hope I can manage something before Tuesday!!!
Thanks all in advance!

At 9:19 a.m., Blogger Naomi @ WCOE said...

Hi Bort,

Thanks for your note! I have been to the Boston area, but in the middle of January so I didn't get out looking for any orchids! My suggestion would be to try getting in touch with someone local to the area, perhaps an email to the Massachusetts Orchid Society? If you look under About MOS > Officers there is a list of contacts. You could also try getting your hands on the following book, perhaps just perusing it at a local library or bookstore? Wild Orchids of the Northeast: New England, New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey / Paul Martin Brown. Good luck, happy orchid hunting and enjoy your visit!

At 6:25 p.m., Anonymous Sharon said...

I too haven't seen any wild Orchids, don't live in the right part of the country. Great you got to see some!

At 4:41 p.m., Blogger Naomi @ WCOE said...

Thanks for your note, Sharon ... what area do you live in? Orchids grow in some surprising places!

At 4:43 p.m., Blogger Naomi @ WCOE said...

Sarah, it's on my to do list to visit New York City while I'm in this part of the country, so if I get there, and it's springtime, we can go hunting together!

At 4:58 p.m., Anonymous Sharon said...

Central US, the great American desert,not the right climate!

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