Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Orchid unknownus--update

Since Miz Minka is curious if I have identified the Orchid unknownus, yes I have. But sadly, I must report that I have "cheated'.

As it turns out, I have managed to get a bit of a reputation in the orchid community as someone who knows places of wonderful botanical treasures. Perhaps I should start a side business of giving guided tours? Anyhow, my orchid friend has been asking me for about a year now to take him on some of my expeditions. So, I let him know I was planning on going to Triangle Bog and he can tag along if he liked. Since he was kind enough to give me an orchid, the least I could do was let him muck around in a Bog with me.

My friend suggested I meet him at his home and that he would be willing to drive to the bog. So when I met him at his home, he was kind enough to show me his orchids. Upon doing so, I saw a plant that looked very similar to the one he gave me and I asked him if that is the one he gave me. He said it was, and that I figured it out. The identity of the orchid is:
Spiranthes cernua f. odorata 'Chadds Ford' - The Fragrant Ladies Tresses

As it turns out, I was just getting ready to move onto the Spiranthes genus as I have ruled out some other genera. I was also dreading the fact that it might be in the Spiranthes genus because even in bloom, the species is very difficult to identify for even a seasoned taxonomist. I did once identify a species of Spiranthes, but only because it was in bloom and that my macro lens allowed for great magnification of its features. But it was in bloom. To identify the species for the one that was given to me, I would have had to just take an educated guess.


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