Say Man

Two words you might have used, once upon a time, to catch someone’s attention, to show surprise, to have fun. All of which seem appropriate for a new discovery for me on the sauveplaine, the plateau near my village which is so rich in plant life. Yes, it’s another orchid: the Man Orchid (Orchis anthropophora – it also used to be named Aceras anthropophorum), which was growing in a little colony up there.

Man orchid

Man orchid – Orchis anthropophora

Only about 25 cm tall, with sepals and petals seeming to form a hood or helmet, and the lip resembling a tiny man.

Man orchid - close-up

Man orchid – close-up

I’ve been keeping a list of the species I’ve found on the sauveplaine, and now I’m up to 92 – when I have a mo, I’ll put the list on the ‘Patch Lists’ page of the blog. I find that keeping a list is a great way to remember names, to appreciate the differences in habitat, and to develop the habit of looking closely at all species, not just the showy ones.

And musos may already have guessed: here’s Bo Diddley from 1959 with the eponymous song.

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3 Comments

Filed under Orchis

3 responses to “Say Man

  1. I would like to see this orchid. I have never come across it.

  2. cilshafe

    I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this before but there’s a delightful memoir about orchid hunting called The Military Orchid by Jocelyn Brooke, 1948. As it happens I have a spare copy. Would you like it?

    • Yes, I have heard of this book – possibly from you. And yes, I’d love to have a copy. The latest discovery this week was of a bee orchid – I don’t know, there is something about these flowers which induces the collector’s passion.

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