Wednesday, 3 June 2009

Sierra de Almijara, Granada Province.

A spectacular show of Marsh Orchids.

The Rio.
After quite a drive out in to the wild's, Jayne and I got to the site where Ian Philips from Malaga had seen Common Twayblade (Listera ovata) and Robust Marsh Orchid (Dactylorhiza eleta) in the past.
Common Twayblade (Listera ovata).
The Marsh Orchid was quite a sight with about 60 spikes growing on the banks of a clear mountain stream with several of the plants reaching a height of near 3 feet and were possibly of the subspecies sesquipedalis. The prize here though were two spikes of the Common Twayblade a new orchid species in Spain for me. They may not be the smartest or brightest orchid I have ever seen but the two spikes were very nice. 
Robust Marsh Orchid (Dactylorhiza eleta).
Usually growing to between 20 and 60 cm, these plants were on the small side at about 30 cms. The spike usually only has two subopposie large oval leaves but a small third leaf can rarely be present.
Also seen here was Speckled Wood (Pararge aegeria) and Painted Lady (Vanessa cardui) and a very large species of pond skater.

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