West Highland Flora

Birdsnest Orchid


Neottia nidus-avis

 

Neottia nidus-avis

Photo Carl Farmer
25 May 2003 Scorrybreac, Skye
Flowers c 1.8 cm long including tube

Rare in deep woodland shade

Plant c 20-40 cm tall, lower petal of flower c 12 mm long.

ID: Lip of flower with 2 widely divergent lobes, Thyme Broomrape has 3.

Other features: Does not make chlorophyll but lives off decaying leaf litter, prepared for it by a fungus which lives in the matted "birds nest" of roots.  Leaves consist of brown sheathing scales as in RH pic below.  The plants do not appear every year.

 

Neottia nidus-avis

Photo Carl Farmer
25 May 2003 Scorrybreac, Skye
Plant height 24 cm
Spike 3.6 cm across at widest

  Neottia nidus-avis

Photo Carl Farmer
25 May 2003 Scorrybreac, Skye
Lower lf 4.8 cm high

 

Neottia nidus-avis

Photo Carl Farmer
25 May 2003 Scorrybreac, Skye

 

  Neottia nidus-avis

Photo Carl Farmer
25 May 2003 Scorrybreac, Skye

Above: individual flower showing 2-lobed lip.

Right: flowers showing yellow stigma

 

 

Neottia nidus-avis

Photo Carl Farmer
25 May 2003 Scorrybreac, Skye

  Neottia nidus-avis

Photo Carl Farmer
25 May 2003 Scorrybreac, Skye
Largest capsule 10 mm long ex stalk
 

  Previous year's stem with fruit capsules, which
is still standing when this year's is in flower.

 

 


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