The long and short of it

Urochilus sanguineus – Maroon Banded Greenhood

This species used to be listed as a Pterostylis, and is similar strucurally to the Bunochilus.  Often it is found with Bunochilus, but they have not been known to hybridize.  It has a labellum which is sensitive to touch.  The plant will either produce a flowering stem, or a sterile leaf.

Winter orchids: Linguella sp. Hills nana, Urochilus sanguineus

This species flowers from May to September, and can be found in most regions of South Australia, as well as Western Australia, Tasmania and Victoria.  It is believed that this plant may have originated from the west, as most Urochilus species are endemic to Western Australia.  South Australia only has this species.

Quite often I’ve seen a variety of heights of these orchids, on the same site, at the same time.  This is mainly due to the nutrients of the soil where the plants are growing.  The dwaft plants are called ‘depauperate’.  Another feature of these orchids is they can grow in clumps or as a single plant.

The flowers can be difficult to photograph as they are very darkly coloured.  However with the afternoon sun coming through them they are beautiful.  Taking photos of them with a flash makes these flowers almost look black, and hides the loveliness of these flowers.

I’ve provided two pictures below of this species, the first from the southern and the second from the northern Mt. Lofty Ranges to show there is really no difference despite location.  Overall the species only varies in height, and the flowers fade with age.

Know Them

4 thoughts on “The long and short of it

    1. Helen Post author

      I haven’t seen such a good cluster of flowers since then. I took the picture last year, but there are some really good specimens this year, too.

  1. Joanna

    Your blog is extremely interesting. I love flowersbut know virtually nothing about them; God made them and they need sunlight, water, and dirt, that is about the extent of my knowledge in Botany plus I possess a black thumb, I kill plants of all kinds. I want to thank you for liking our blog and for the reply you left on my son’s post; he was absolutely thrilled by it; another believer and violinist commenting, plus you are not from America (that made it even more special) you made his morning. Thank you for the kind words. I hope you will enjoy following our endeavors. God bless and keep you and your dear ones.

    1. Helen Post author

      It is a pleasure to know I’ve made his morning. I’ve never been particularly successful in growing plants, but when they are put in the ground, and I forget them, they grow very well!!

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