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Autumn Lady's Tresses

Autumn Lady's Tresses
Photo Information
Copyright: Amelia Heath (Amelia) Silver Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 26 W: 0 N: 93] (310)
Genre: Plants
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2010-08-27
Categories: Flowers
Exposure: f/5.0, 1/500 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): RARE or SIGNIFICANT contributions to TN 1, RARE or SIGNIFICANT contributions to TN 4, Orchids of Europe [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2010-08-27 16:37
Viewed: 3610
Points: 22
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Spiranthes spiralis, commonly known as Autumn Lady's tresses, is the latest blooming native species of orchid, flowering in August and September. It is characterised by a spiral inflorescence produced after the leaves have died down.

It is fairly common in the south of England and Wales, otherwise this is a rare flower. This one was growing on the borders of Shropshire (England) and Montgomeryshire (Wales). In Great Britain and Ireland its northern-most occurrence is on the Isle of Man. It has never been found in Scotland, and in Ireland it has been recorded from County Sligo.

It is a tiny and insignificant little orchid which would go un-noticed by many people, hence this is the first time it has been shown on Trek Nature.

I first saw this plant growing in the south of France, and on Monday evening I noticed it growing in short grass on the limestone hills of Llynclys. The light was not good, so today I visited again, and even though I knew where it was growing, it took about 30 minutes to find it in an area less than 10 metres square. The height of the whole inflorescence was about 75mm, although it can reach up to 200mm.

The hermaphrodite flowers are pollinated mainly by bees, although I did see some butterflies visiting the orchid as well.

Spiranthes spiralis prefers neutral and basic (alkaline) soils, and can grow in very alkaline soils. This one was found on close cropped grassland overlying limestone, near the limestone quarries of Llynclys.

Family: Orchidaceae
Subfamily: Orchidoideae
Tribe: Cranichideae
Subtribe: Spiranthinae
Genus: Spiranthes
Species: S. spiralis

Argus, bahadir, anel, CatherineD, Dis. Ac., oanaotilia has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To uleko: Spiranthes spiralisAmelia 1 08-30 07:24
To Argus: Spiral orchid - Lady's tressesAmelia 1 08-28 14:00
To bahadir: Autumn Lady's tressesAmelia 1 08-28 02:59
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Critiques [Translate]

Hi Amelia,
nice autumn orchid
TFS, Ferran

Hello Amelia, excellent shot of this strange and beautiful flwer.
Details and colours are splendid.
TFS and regards,

nice portrait, TFS Ori

Ciao Amelia. An intersting vertical cui you've choisen. Very good lighty and details. Intrigant soft colours.


  • Great 
  • anel Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 3053 W: 3 N: 8715] (40574)
  • [2010-08-28 4:57]

Hello Amelia,
I see that you are using your new Canon now. The subject you show is not the easiest to photograph! Interesting species of flowers which I never had seen until now. Well chosen tight vertical framing too.
Interesting posting. Thanks and kind regards

Hello Amelia,
Very pretty capture with nice colours. Interesting species I never saw. Cheers,

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2010-08-28 7:32]
  • [+]

Hello Amelia,
Nice capture of this little spirally orchid.
The simple composition, sharpness and OOF natural BG contribute to an excellent portrait of a species that is absent in Sweden and one I have never seen.
Thanks for sharing this and have a great weekend,

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2010-08-28 15:30]

Hi Amelia,it seem an easy work and a simple pic but i know how is difficult to take si perfectly a situation like that.Impressive quality of sharpness along all the spiralis,very nice vertical crop and colors naturals!My best compliments,have a nice Sunday,Luciano

  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2010-08-29 9:43]
  • [+]

Hello Amelia,
A very nicely framed capture of this peculiar Orchid with interesting spiral stems. I've never heard of this before but little ones tend to be overlooked and forgotten in place of more striking species. Excellent focus on the flowers too and a fine smooth background that makes it stand out.
Many thanks and warm regards, Ulla

Hello Amelia,

this are a beautiful small and tiny orchid and congratulations to be the first on TN.
I starting about a week with new rare flowers from the netherlands but expessionally from limburg.
Great sharpness, muted bg and detals.
Fine colours.



Hy Amelia
You prezent here a rare orchid, not so oftern seen here. Very good vertical image, with good details in the flowers. Well done!

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