Thursday, 7 July 2016

Epipactis Atrorubens and Schmals and Pale Variants (7th July 2016)

Specimen No.57 atrorubens albiflora or pale variant No.2a (Click over to enlarge)
On Hutton Roof today, this is probably one of my best finds of the year so far.  The photo here shows just how far its on this morning and you can see it presents itself with very creamy coloured bosses and epichile and does hold many "albiflora" features. Although just like Variant Palens No.2 from 2014 you will see if you look very close odd particles of purple stain. In Palens No.2 the purple presents itself with just little specks or dots which are present on the epichile or bosses.  Whereby on this Specimen No.57 Pale variant 2a it shows purple staining on the sepals and petals. I would imagine if things run to form with this type of variant it will also gain burnt edges to the petals, sepals and bracts within the next couple of days.  A better photo will hopefully be presented very soon.

Specimen 9a this morning which I now think more than likely to be a offspring to fertile Schmal No.9 (Click over to enlarge)

This is getting really exciting for me, let me try and explain. Back in 2014 I had two confirmed schmals which were No.9 and No.10, here below is a photo showing the two super hybrids (Epipactis schmalhauseneii) which have a specific colouring and build relating only to that pair.  No other schmal or atrorubens which I have recorded on the whole of Hutton Roof have ever featured this specific colouring and detail. Up until last year, when No.9a appeared on the scene and above is a photo of the specimen as it appeared this morning.  So here next is the original pair from a photo back in 2014 when the hybrids were first discovered.

Photo shows hybrids Schmals No. 9 and 10 from back in 2014 (Click over to enlarge)

Since 2014 these specimens have been so special of Schmals because of their fabulous "green" stems and ovary features.  In 2014 No.9 the smallest of the two stood at 20" high and held 50 flowerheads (more than its sibling) whereby No. 10 stood at 21 3/4" and held 40 flowerheads.

Although we decided to cage the rare plants in readiness for 2015 it soon became apparent that on early inspection that they had already fallen victim to either a deer nip or a hare cut even with the cages present the unknown predator succeeded.  So we lost the pair of them for that year.   In 2016 the original parents have not shown, or should I say they have not shown in the same place as they were in this photograph.  Rather than thinking that perhaps the plants have moved areas eg: 9a is approx 14ft away from the original No.9 area.  And this years 10a is approx 4ft away from the original No.10, I am now feeling more and more confident that the 2014 schmals were without doubt fertile and have sown seed all around their particular area.

Last year (2015) Although like I have already said the parents did try to come through prior to predation, but sadly no flowerheads got chance to mature. It soon became noticeable that some of the local new plants were coming through that had this same colouring as the original 2014 adults.This year there are even more specimens coming through which again have this same colour feature, although now it makes sense that there are plenty of offspring in the local vicinity.  This year already I would presume we have up to about six specimens which take on this feature and they are perhaps no more than 10 to 15ft in distance away from where the original pair had set.

The New No.9s and 10s will form references of 9a,9b,9c and 10a,10b and 10c and so on, so to give them some sort of family tree reference.  Already the newish specimens are certainly stronger than they were last year, however some of the 2016 specimens are very weak and fragile specimens and I dont think you would ever consider at this time that they could well be the offspring of those beautiful Schmalhauseneii's.

Specimen No.9b (Click over to enlarge)

Another one found today in the same vicinity is Specimen No.9b which again I feel could well be a offspring from Schmal 9 because purely of its colouring etc.  I do intend over the coming days to try and locate all which could fall within this category.

Until next time please enjoy.