The dozens of Showy Lady’s-slippers (Cypripedium reginae), our club emblem, blooming in the understory of the forested peatland augured favourably for good orchid viewing in the nearby White Lake Fen. With social distancing in mind, four of us accompanied Michael Runtz on his task to bring the diversity and beauty of the fen’s orchids to club members by video. Britta Gerwin did the honours of capturing Michael’s encyclopedic knowledge about the orchids, particularly their different methods for attracting insects and distributing their pollen in an efficient manner.
We found seven native orchids, five in peak bloom:
Showy Lady’s-slipper (Cypripedium reginae)
Rose Pogonia (Pogonia ophioglossoides)
White Bog orchid (Platanthera dilatata)
Grass Pink (Calopogon tuberosus)
Northern Green Orchid (Platanthera aquilonis)
Yellow Lady’s-slipper (Cypripedium parviflorum)
Pink Lady’s-slipper (Cypripedium acaule)
We also searched for the elusive Arethusa bulbosa (Dragon’s Mouth orchid) on the hummocks near the fen’s forest edge, but failed to find it.
Nevertheless, members are in for a fabulous virtual field trip when the video is posted to the MFNC web site for viewing. Special thanks to Britta for recording and editing duties.
Bonus: twice we were treated to a chorus of coyotes very close by. Not surprisingly, Michael yipped back!!
UPDATE: this video is posted on Michael’s newly launched Facebook page. You do not have to join Facebook to view it.