Broad Leaved Helleborine Orchid

Some things are not what they seem.  The manure that landed at the base of the old Christmas tree last year was hiding a small but perfect surprise.  Thriving in the shaded space under one of its favourite types of tree, the spruce, a single orchid has grown.  Unseen as it pushed its way up through the lower branches it finally emerged with its distinctive flowers in full bloom.

The broad leaved helleborine orchid (Epipactis helleborine) loves to grow on the fringe of the woodland.  A tall orchid with a spiral of flowers it is not rare but is far from common.

A real treat and a beauty in the manure.

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