Category Archives: Corysanthes

Four years

So it has now been four years since I have been observing this patch of helmet orchids (Corysanthes diemenica).  The first time I saw it in 2011 was probably the best year.  This year was not brilliant but it looked fairly good.  2013 was probably when I saw the least number of orchids flowering.

Corysanthes diemenica in 2011

In 2011 I saw the most flowers in this patch.

Corysanthes diemenica

In 2012, there were not many flowers out and is probably the least number of flowers I’ve seen at this patch.

Corysanthes diemenica

In 2013, there were not many flowers but a lot of leaves were up.

Corysanthes diemenica

So 2014 put in a fairly decent display.  A lot of the plants that were up were flowering.

And here is a picture of the little helmet orchids (taken on my phone) when the sun decided to come out!

Corysanthes diemenica

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Three years difference

In July 2011, I came across this amazing colony of Corysanthes dieminica (Helmet orchids.)  It was really exciting to find them, as I had not seen such a healthy colony before.  The picture below of the field of flowers is one of my favorite shots.

Corysanthes diemenica

In 2011

There were so many flowers.  It almost seemed that every plant that was up was flowering.  The total patch would be at least one metre wide, and nearly a metre and a half long.  It is sits between a path and a couple of Xanthorrhoea, under which there were a few flowers.

The whole patch

The whole patch in 2011

I find it interesting that all the flowers are facing one direction.  In this case it is towards the south.  Other smaller patches of Corysanthes diemenica have also faced mainly one direction, but not always to the south.

Another angle

Another angle again in 2011

So after finding something as good as this, I had to come back the next year.  In 2012, there weren’t nearly as many flowers or leaves up.  The picture below shows the most dense section in 2012, which is nothing compared to 2011.

Corysanthes diemenica

In 2012

This year there weren’t many flowers either.  Looking across the different pictures, it looks like there are more leaves up this year, with a couple of flowers.  However, I did notice that there were more flowers under the Xanthorrhoea, than I could remember previously.  I wonder what will happen next year.

Corysanthes diemenica

In 2013

The colouring of the helmet orchids are so beautiful.  The flowers are also partially transparent, and this makes them stunning to look at when the sunlight comes through the flower!

Corysanthese dieminica

There’s nothing like getting up nice and close

Click on any of the images to view them at a larger size.

Between the rain

Yesterday morning, I took the opportunity to go orchid hunting, as it will be raining for the next few days.  Fortunately while I was out there, the weather was rather forgiving, but there was a very light shower.  The birds seemed to be enjoying themselves, but were too fast for me to capture.

water

I really love it how these Linguella nana’s (syn. Pterostylis nana) are having a conversation.  They were the first flowers I found of this species, after having seen plenty of leaves and buds.

Linguella nana

I always find it interesting the height difference of Urochilus sanguineus (syn Pterostylis sanguinea).  I am fascinated by the height difference that can be found at one site, though the actual flower size is the same.  These look amazing with the sun coming through the flowers, but this time the sun was hiding.

Urochilus sanguineus

DSC00687

I also saw the Bunochilus viriosus (syn P. viriosa), which is often found growing along side the Urochilus sanguineus.

Bunochilus viriosous

Camera dies…

Finally, I was able to go and hunt for some orchids.  But my camera died!

So my camera for taking macro photography thinks that everything is white.  Fortunately, Dad very kindly lent me his camera, thank you Dad!  So I was able to take some orchid pictures to share with you all.  I saw lots and lots of leaves.  There were so many.  It could be that this is going to be a good year for finding orchids.  We will have to wait to see how the year unfolds.  Some of the different leaves that I saw included Arachnorchis, Glossodia major, Bunochilus viriosous and Thelymitra.  Below is a very nice field of Nemacianthus caudatus.  This orchid will be flowering in the coming month.

Nemacianthus caudatus

I also checked out my favourite little spot of Corysanthes diemenica.  The leaves were emerging, and there were some tiny little buds beginning to appear.

Corysanthes diemenica

I was also able to find some orchids in flower.  There were quite a few plants of Urochilus sanguineus.  This species will continue flowering for several more months.  It has a relatively long flowering time.  I have written about this species previously for the Know Them series.  The flowers were lovely and fresh, and I believe this is when they have the best colouring.

Urochilus sanguineus

And the other orchid I saw in flower was the tiny Mosquito orchid, Acianthus pusillus.  This species also has a long flowering time, and will be finishing in August.

Acianthus pusillus

Some of these trees where covered in the fungi pictured below.  I thought it looked quite pretty.  Enjoy your long weekend!

Fungi

I want/need a new camera now!  I would prefer a digital SLR, any suggestions?

Orchid Hunter Australia Videos

Last year when I browsed through YouTube for orchid videos, I did not find many that were interesting.  However the other day, I had another look on-line  and it appears that a few Australians have been uploading their videos of orchids, and I would like to share with you some of them.

The two that leaped out at me are called Orchid Hunter Australia 1 & 2, filmed and produced by Julian Pitcher.  They are of Victorian orchids, but apply to orchid hunting right across Australia.  Let me congratulate Julian on doing such a great job, and I really look forward to seeing more of these videos.

Orchid Hunter Australia 1

In this first videos, Julian introduces us to some of the basic things to look for when orchid hunting, and I felt he really captured what it is like to look for orchids, and how they can blend into the bush.

Orchid Hunter Australia 2

This is probably my favourite of the two, as looking for orchids turns into a military expedition.  It really feels like that sometimes!  It was also good to find information about other plants and animals in the video, as they all influence the whole ecosystem.

Corysanthes diemenica

This is a short film  by Richard Davion which captures some of the joy of finding orchids.

What I enjoy about seeing films of orchids is that it captures the three diemnsional feel of the flowers, which is lacking in orchid photography.  Later on I would like to spent time producing my own videos with narration, and helping in identifying orchids.  But in the meantime I will enjoy what others are producing.  It is about making other aware that these tiny terrestrial orchids are there, and need to be protected.

For other orchid videos please visit the video page, or my YouTube channel.  Please help me share these videos.