Tuesday, August 24, 2010
The single plant of the large species has fresh white flowers, but its stem is too tall to fit into the kind of close-up, whole-plant portrait I would like to paint. Both plants of the dwarf species are "past flowering", but little brown scraps of what were delicate white orchid flowers still cling to the tips of the developing seed capsules. I chose the plant growing among the translucent leaves of Mnium.
Wikipedia says that Goodyera repens is "a green underground creeper that sends out occasional skinny stems above the surface. It is found in isolated spots in the forests and bogs of Europe but is the most common orchid of Scandinavia. It is also found in Canada and the US, and is a protected species throughout most of its range. It does not survive fire, and does not soon reenter an area after fire or logging. It is generally found only in forests at least 95 years old. Like other orchids, it lives in symbiosis with a mycrorrhiza, a special rhizome-dwelling fungus (Ceratobasidium cornigerum or Rhizoctonia goodyearae-repentis). The mycorrhiza helps the orchid absorb and assimilate nutrients. The seeds of Goodyeera repens are probably the smallest of any plant."
Posted by Aleta Karstad at 10:12 AM