Wild Flower Society visit

Showed a group from the Wild Flower Society around the reserve today and we all had a really great time. Highlights of the day were the last few Monkey Orchids & hybrids, lots of Common Spotted Orchids & Pyramidals; Downy-fruited Sedge doing well; literally hundreds of Bee Orchids (must be an excellent year); Bastard […]

How to distinguish our hybrids from the parent species

Orchis purpurea x simia (=angusticruris) on Hartslock NR

I’m often asked about our Lady x Monkey orchid hybrids and visitors frequently seem confused about how to distinguish them from their parents. So here is a quick summary and discussion about them to give you some tips.

Here is a summary of the features that […]

12th May 2019 – looking good

Here’s just a quick update from the site as of today (12/5/2019). The hybrids are looking amazing and are probably at their peak flowering now. Still no sign of the Lady Orchid so that has clearly skipped a year. Here are a few photos on the Monkey Orchids, starting with a new one on […]

May 2019 – orchids starting

Just come back from putting out the path-marker tapes with Gerry. The hybrids are flowering very well and looking great but the big news is that no Lady Orchids are flowering this year. This is the first time we haven’t had a Lady Orchid flower for many years and might show signs that the […]

Monkey orchids have started

Checked on the orchids during the regular May workparty and found about a dozen or more starting to flower. There are plenty still in tight bud though so I’d encourage visitors to wait until next weekend, otherwise the ones in bud are going to be trodden on before they become visible. However, the Lady orchid […]

Bank holiday Monday update

Absolutely scorching hot up there today. Lady orchid & hybrids flowering well but the Monkey orchids are still in tight bud (see below). I would expect the first to be in flower by next weekend, though you could wait a week to get more of them out.

Lots of Grizzled & Dingy Skippers and Green […]

Orchid season has started … kinda

Looks like a lovely weekend ahead and the orchids are starting as they mean to go one with 1 nice Lady orchid and plenty of hybrids in flower. No signs of the Money orchids at all yet – hence the slightly guarded declaration of a start to the season.

Butterflies are appearing too, with 2 […]

Spring is springing!!

Another glorious Spring day up on Hartslock today – sunny and warm all day with insects getting very numerous. Lots of Brimstone, Bombylius major, Andrena cineraria, Osmia bicolor and Orange Tip. The flowers are also lovely with 100s of Cowslips and the first Lady Orchid (Orchis purpurea) flowers. The most advanced hybrid (Orchis x angusticruris) […]

And suddenly Spring has arrived!! 

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Spring 2018

The winter has been dragging on for ages and even now, in the middle of April, the Hairy Violets have only just started to really flower in earnest and the Pasque Flowers are just poking up, long after Easter. Cowslips are just coming through and I saw my first beeflies on Saturday 8th, along with […]