Orchid hunting in Lockdown

Green winged orchid in my garden

Expeditions are quite limited this year for obvious reasons and my orchid hunting is confined to my garden and within a couple of miles of home. Now, I am quite fortunate there. As an orchid grower there are quite a few things popping up in my garden as well as the ones I have put in pots and containers or planted myself. These Green winged orchids (Anacamptis morio) sprang up by themselves in a patch of lawn. I expect I wafted around some chaff and seed scraps a few years ago and these seeds found a tightly mown area of poor grass which is so close to a retaining wall that it is slightly more alkaline that the general lawn and other plant growth is restricted. We innocently created a perfect micro-habitat. We now have 4 in flower and a fifth which is just in leaf this year.

Four green winged orchids in an alkaline patch of lawn

We also have a lot of Common spotted popping up all over the garden. There are a couple of ‘meadow’ patches where they have been sowed and encouraged, these are now showing dozens of new plants, but they are also appearing of their own accord in paths and pots. If they appear in a mown grass path I will transplant them, because they are in the way, anywhere else they can just stay and do their own thing. The garden is well supplied with wild flowers and there are several wild areas which have very little gardening going on, lots of nettles in other words but lockdown offers a lot more time for weeding (I hate weeding) and the beds are looking good.