Late-flowering orchid

Photo: Arne Ader
Translation: Liis
Broad-leaved helleborine
 

Broad-leaved helleborine   Laialehine neiuvaip        Epipactis helleborine

 
The flowers are in different, rather modest shades of reddish-green. The tallest of our orchids (from half a metre to one metre); in the long inflorescence there may be up to forty slightly drooping flowers. Although the plant is self-pollinating insects show interest in the flowers  - the nectar secreted in the bowl-shaped upper part of the flower lip is thought to have an intoxicating effect on them.
 
The broadleaved helleborine has become quite common in Estonia; difficult to explain why? It is a forest plant, growing in quite varying soil, humidity and light conditions; we also often meet it gracing road verges. The leaves are broad, from that the name. Among the orchids only the lady’s-slipper has similar leaves..
 
Sometimes the plant is not to be found in the spot where it grew last year because the rhizome has not grown a shoot but gathers strength in the soil for flowering in some following year with the aid of mycorrhizal fungi.


 

EST EN DE ES RU  FORUM

       

The week in pictures

My Nature Calendar

Help to do Looduskalender.ee better - send Your observations about nature.

News History