Thursday, 25 June 2015

6250 and 354

The two 'orchid fields' at the northern end of Park Downs have really got to me. I have spent much of the last 36 hours wondering just how many orchids there actually are. After Tuesday's visit I put the Pyramidal Orchid figure at c3,000 and the Bee Orchid total at 100+. This morning I went back and counted them...

One person, even if they methodically criss-cross the two moderately-sized fields, is not going to come up with anything other than an approximation of the number of plants on show, but I can confidently claim that there are certainly no fewer than 6,250 Pyramidal and 354 spikes of Bee Orchid. Most of the former species are towards the top and middle of the fields and those of the latter at the base of the slope. In one small area (maybe 20m x 5m) I counted 114 Bee Orchids alone.

I didn't stop to look at much else, although was pleased to come across quite a bit of Smooth Tare, and butterfly numbers had picked up, mainly Meadow Browns and Marbled Whites.

If you live nearby it is certainly worth a visit. I will be going back for sure!

There were very few paler flowered Pyramidals
Many of the Bee Orchids are huge!

6 comments:

  1. Sheesh the only bee orchid I've seen in Newark was only about 5 inches high!

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    1. Hi Simon, some of those this morning were up to 12 inches tall - incredible!

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  2. Your photos are beautiful! We are close in age, I was born in Oct. 1956. Warm greetings from Montreal, Canada. My grandparents on my father's side are from Kent. :)

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    1. That is very kind of you Linda, many thanks. Here in Surrey it is currently 24C and sunny. Next week we are being promised temperatures nudging 30C. The orchids might all look a bit frazzled by then...

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  3. Fabulous, Steve. I'm particularly enjoying these orchid posts - I've a serious soft spot for them. Just found a new Northern Marsh colonising my front lawn this evening...

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    1. I'm envious of your Northern Marsh Orchids Jon. Only seen them on my infrequent visits North - love their deep red colours.

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