Saturday, 11 July 2015

Hybrids are Schmals and variant Pals (Epipactis Schmalhauseneii and E. Atrorubens Variants = Pallens)

Dark Green Fritillary - lots about this morning (Click over to enlarge) also below showing photo of underside)

Saturday 11th July 2015 - Hutton Roof Complex "assessing the Epipactis"

Dark Green Underside
(click over to enlarge)

(Epipactis atrorubens) are at least 10 days to two weeks away from their best.  The majority at the present time are a pale grey green looking with drooping heads.  There are pockets about which are showing large amounts of atrorubens this year.  Also I have found one particular area of some 30 square metre radius where most of the helliborines are already in flower, but this is just a "one off" small pocket I have found and not a general situation.

I did manage to find a beauty this morning (not recorded before and check out the photos below) which I thought at first could have been a new (Lutescens/Pallens Variant) though quickly dismissed this seeing that the epichile on this particular plant is pink in colour and as a rule last years "Pallans" never grew above about 10" (25cm) whereby this plant was measuring 20"(50cm), although it certainly does bear "variant" colouring which is very noticeable especially with the sepals being a yellow colouring, the epichile is a light pinkish white although the bosses are red.  By strange coincidence it lies within about two metres of the rare recorded Lutescens/Pallens No.4.  I can only think that this beautiful mixed colouring is a result of ground minerals. All photos were taken this morning.

"Now isn't this just a bonny plant"  (Click over to enlarge)
Whilst at this area I thought perhaps it would be good to check out the progress of the rare Epipactis Schmalhauseneii.  Although we keep positive it soon became apparent that of the seven "schmals we have on this pavement only four look like they are going to make it!

Schmal 8 is doing fine (photo below) Schmal 9 and 10 - will not flower this year, looks very much like possible snail or slug predation. Schmal 11 been bitten off, probably by Roe Deer or Hare, Schmal 12 looks OK, Schmals 15 and 16 are doing well.

Just for the record here is the progress of the other Schmals on various pavements:
Schmal 1 (A lovely flower for the past three years, is showing at a "runt" growth this year and cant see it making full maturity).  Schmal 2 - Second year in succession it has been attacked by a slug, I actually caught the rascal devouring on my approach - Schmal 3 - Not yet checked. Schmal 4 Not yet checked. Schmal 5 Just never grown at all this year - nothing just the old upright stem from last year.
Schmal 6 Not yet checked. Schmal 7 (never were a 7)

So out of our confirmed 15 Schmalhauseneii plants we can only expect progress from at least 9 specimens.

Here are some more of the photos taken this morning and which in some cases show the comparison of the same plant taken last year.

Here is a photo of Schmal 15 and 16 which are doing well.  These are probably the strongest Schmals on Hutton Roof with No.15 last year bearing a phenomenal 56 flowers - just look at how these turned out last year in the following photo

This was a nice specimen in flower - Epipactis atrorubens the beautiful
Dark Red Helliborine
Schmals No. 9 and 10 - You can see where No.10 has been bit through and can only presume it is damage done by a slug, I would have thought the cage should have protected from other predators - A real shame this, because they were very light  specimens as you can see in the next photo.
These were the beautiful Specimen 9 on left and 10 on the right as shown in 2014. They are probably the two most green influenzed atrorubens which we had on Hutton Roof - sadly not for 2015
This is todays photo of Schmal Numbers 11 and 12, with No 12 OK but sadly No.11 has been completely bitten off, a sign has a rule of damage by roe deer or hare - below is a photo of how the plants looked last year.
This photo shows No.11 and 12 as seen in 2014
And finally with the Schmals is No. 8 which is doing fine.  Look below to see how it turned out last year.
And what a beauty Schmal 8 was last year