Ever seen a native orchid? Katy’s a bit of an afficianado when it comes to these beautiful flowers. Here are some winter bloomers you can spot on your next hike!
I’m sure that if you go hiking in conservation areas, you’ve seen our beautiful little native orchid species, but you might not have realised it.
Various species flower at different times, putting on a gorgeous year-round show. Native orchids usually grow in areas with plenty of eucalyptus, as they rely on a fungus that grows around the roots of the trees to germinate their seeds. It’s a pretty neat little deal. You might even have them in your own backyard if you’ve got gum trees about.
Usually, where I live, on the ouskirts of Melbourne, places like Baluk William Nature Conservation Reserve, Langwarrin Flora and Fauna Reserve, Warrandyte State Park, Wilson’s Promontory and many other conservation areas have an abundance of native orchids all year round.
Winter Blooming Native Orchid Species
Right now, the ‘winter’ species are flowering, and even though they sport less bright and colourful flowers, they’re no less beautiful. The species that you’ll be looking for are from the Greenhood (Pterostylis), Helmet (Corybas), Midge (Acianthus) and Bird (Chiloglottis) families. All of these families have flowers in green, brown and deep red hues, perfectly suited to the quiet beauty of winter.
All of our Aussie native orchids are protected, so please look, take photos and wonder at their beauty, but don’t touch.
Here’s a selection of photo references to keep your eyes open for during the colder months, while you’re out on your next hiking adventure.