We were introduced in that wonderland of a prairie, Lynx Prairie Reserve, in very southern Ohio, Adams County to be exact. I must have stared at these unusual blooms so long, that it was noticeable.
I couldn’t connect it to anything I heretofore have known, and I found that odd and a little unsettling. I had heard of this plant before, but as when you turn a corner and a woman of great, natural earthiness and beauty approaches from around that corner . . . I was much taken aback, and uncharacteristically without words. Honest.
Though my grandparents all came here in the years before 1920, I have forever been fascinated by Native Americans. My public school and college studies never spent 2 minutes introducing me to our earlier stewards of this wondrous land. I often, in unpopulated, wooded areas wonder how I’d be received if the clock were turned back some 200 years, and I was moving about on their land. The Travels of William Bartram, unaccompanied or accompanied by a guide through Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas was a could not put down read just a month ago. He traveled through sylvan, pristine, unbelievable 1785 America. What he described? Incredible. Honest, again. His genuine, unbiased accounts of the Cherokee, Creeks, Seminoles, Choctaws and more? Mesmerizing. Need I say Honest?
All this by way of saying that the name of this wildflower . . . rivets me. It does. That as we were working this Ohio-saved prairie, me actually looking for my butterflies.
How? Angela made this possible. It was not just orchids, clearly.