Saturday, 25 June 2016

Epi(c) not far away NOW !

Photo taken today of this which may have been leaning towards a "Palens" last year  (Click over to enlarge)

Saturday 25th June 2016 - Hutton Roof Complex  (0900hrs to 1200hrs)

Shortly after parking up I was to be serenaded with a very close Lesser Whitethroat, who sang for some twenty minutes or so and moving across within his territory, I also heard another one singing some two hundred yards away. New for the records for this year.

Also had my first of the year Ringlets butterflies of which several were seen, lots of Meadow Browns and my first Large Skipper.

I was really surprised to see how well the Epipactis where doing with some only a week away from full bloom but the majority still two to three weeks away..

Already Schmal No.8 this year has been got at with either slugs or hare.  Can't see how a Hare could have got to it which almost convinced me that perhaps slugs where the culprit, but closeby other plants had already had a Harecut!  Pity this because Schmal No. 8 (see photo below which shows it a beautiful show in 2014 but last year 2015 it had been attached by black aphids

Epipactis Schmalhauseneii No.8  - photos 2014 and 2015 (Click over photo to enlarge)
Wasn't No. 8 a beauty back in 2014, then look at what happened in 2015 when Black Aphids were being farmed by Black Ants which all literally sucked the life out of the plant, and in 2016 she again has run victim to either slugs or a local Hare.

Also did a check today on Schmal 15 and 16 which were beauties in 2014 (see photo below), but fell victim of a harecut last year and this year No.15 is maturing well (left hand side of photo), but No.16 seems rather stunted at the moment.

The following photo shows how it is today, together with a photo of how they looked back in 2014.

Epipactis Schmalhauseneii Nos 15 and 16  (Click over to enlarge)

Here below is the progress of Schmal No.9, last year both 9 and 10 had a harecut, but this year we are just seeing No.9 progress without its mate No.10.

Epipactis Schmalhauseneii No.9   (Click over to enlarge)
This one on the left is hopefully No.9 as seen today and it shows the flower how it was back in 2014 when then it came through with its mate which we called No.10, unfortunately in 2015 both orchids fell victim to a Harecut, but this year we are so far managing to see progress with No.9.  This particular plant was like no other on Hutton Roof in that it contains such light features throughout in particular to the green intake.  A definate one off Schmal this one and we just do not want to lose them. So fingers crossed....

And here below we have more specials on their way.

All these "specials" seem to be coming through OK  (Click over to enlarge)
a definite week to fortnight off!