Anacamptis laxiflora Orchidaceae Loose-flowered Orchid

Picture 1 Picture 2 Picture 3 Guernsey Distribution

Anacamptis laxiflora 17kb

Description - A beautiful orchid, the flowering stem reaching 60cm, with a loose, well-spaced spike of dark purple flowers. Each flower has a short spur, and a white centre, sometimes with faint purple markings. Leaves are long and narrow, without any spots. The stem usually has a purple tinge.

Habitat - Mainly occurs in our old, unimproved damp meadows, often along with other Orchid species.

Comment - This plant does not occur in mainland Britain at all, and visitors come to the Channel Islands especially to see it. It grows quite frequently in neighbouring Brittany and Normandy, in suitable habitats. Occasionally a paler pink or a pure white flower spike (see photo) will arise amongst the usual purple population.

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