Fall is fine, ‘though 99% of butterflies are gone. Mourning cloaks and those elusive Tortoiseshell butterflies do fly in October and November, but these northern butterflies are so very few and far between.
Now back from 3 weeks in Georgia, I have much inventory work to do, louping, culling, identifying and storing all of the newest slides, and working with Rewind Memories to scan the best of the best.
Gardening now amounts to removing spent annuals and cutting other down or to the ground.
A kind of pall descends, ever so slightly on those of us who do these things. Antidote(s)?
Here is one good one. Reminisce. Recall the moments when you did find our own American-native orchids. Remember how they took your breathe away. Beautiful, delicate, solitary and Oh! how defenseless and vulnerable. Rare, so rare. So in need of protection, hopefully by county, state or federal oversight.
Then look forward. Look forward to heading out in the late Spring of 2017 to find these Pink Lady’s Slipper wildflowers. USA native orchids found amidst heavily wooded areas. This one grew in Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge near Cambridge, Maryland, on Maryland’s lower shore area.
Baffled by uncertainty? Don’t know where to find them? There are dozens of native orchids in the eastern U.S., and your county park offices, state park offices and National Wildlife Refuges will be glad to direct you, and use their sharp yellow highlighters to bring you in close personal contact with these Gifts from G-d. June would be my suggestion. Do it.
Headed back today to Chapman State Park, in the Allegheny National Forest. This is northwestern Pennsylvania, near the New York border.
On Friday, June 3, I will enjoy my PowerPoint presentation at the Jamestown Audubon Center. Brownbag lunch after, followed by a . . . field walk. I’ve chosen some of my favorites images, and Boy! I wish you could come. I’d foot the admi$$ion charge, if that’s what it takes!
Will be in my cabin at Chapman through June 7th, and Petra will be even happier than I. Field work those days, mostly headed to bogs and wetlands, for bog butterflies and . . . Orchids!
Oh i’ve gone to Jamestown, to seek me a Bronze Copper (or Showy orchid (I can dream)), it’ll be the Joy of my Life . . . . From a childhood song I mostly recall.
Jeff (offline ’til I return home)
Monday rain. Tuesday? Rain. Wednesday rain. Thursday morning? Drizzle. Five (5) days in mid-shore and lower-shore Maryland. Saw few butterflies, no surprise there, because . . . butterflies do not fly when it rains. An exception to that might be the Northern Pearly-Eye butterfly, which I have seen flying in Pennsylvania in light rain.
This image of a Chapman State Park Pink Lady’s Slipper bloom will suffice until I get my slides of Maryland shore orchids to Kansas, and then have my film slides scanned at Rewind Memories, here in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
I found Pink Lady’s Slippers in Adkins Arboretum here in mid-shore Maryland, and located others in Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge in Cambridge, Maryland. These Delmarva orchids were lighter pink in color, and a bit shorter of flower stalk. Lush they were though, and FUN to search for . . . and Find!
Petra joined me on this trip, though she missed visiting very tony Oxford, and many other neat destinations in this haven for farmers, the rich, and very serious shellfish fishermen/women.
With the rain and wet conditions limiting in one respect, I also found and shot many very beautiful forest plants, the timing (mid-Spring) was perfect.
Today was a cool day here, with Pittsburgh highs hovering around 51 degrees Fahrenheit. During the day, I poured through Israeli wildflower field guides, searching for which of their natives orchids will be in bloom next February to March ’16. A friend confirmed that searching and finding Protected Israeli orchids would be . . . you fill in the word. Butterflies and orchids, Oh, I can only dream.
These Pink Lady Slipper blooms graced a tiny clearing in the woods in Chapman State Park, tucked into the Allegheny National Forest in northwestern Pennsylvania, U.S.A. Sweet they were, delicate, shy, awash in color, and just there, like the finest porcelain, for all to share.
I will shovel my way through the snows of 2016, anticipating the search for Showy Lady’s Slipper (Cypripedium Reginae) in northwestern New York state, Georgia orchids if a certain expert there can find the time, and, w/o a guide, but with much gusto, Israeli orchids, including Drone Bee-Orchid (Ophrys Holosericea), Carmel Bee-Orchid (Ophrys Umbilicata), Bee Orchid (Ophrys Apifera), Tawny Bee-Orchid (Ophrys Fleischmannii), Anatolian Orchid (Orchis Anatolica), Loose-Flowered Orchid (Orchis Laxiflora), Pink Butterfly Orchid (Orchis Papilionacea) and Toothed Orchid (Orchis Tridentate). Well, there’s actually one more on my bucket list, if you’re still there, Galilee Orchid.
All of these orchids are rare. All are knockout gorgeous. All exist only in sylvan habitat, always with equally beautiful butterflies nearby. Wish me luck, No?
Jeff . . . Orchid amateur.