With the wealth of terrestrial orchids flowering as a result of the fuel reduction burn carried out on November 28, 2016, we decided to explore this area for our October Nature Ramble.
It was great to welcome a number of members that do not usually participate in our rambles and it was obvious they enjoyed the experience.
Unfortunately the sun was not out enough to encourage sun orchids to open but nevertheless there were plenty of other species for us to observe.
Large White Spider Orchid
As we entered the area we were greeted by the Large White Spider Orchid Caladenia venusta. In fact they were the feature of the survey with just so many scattered throughout the area.
Group observing Tall Leek Orchid on the side of the track
The Tall Leek Orchid was new to most people and they were intrigued to observe the ‘upside down’ flowers with the dorsal sepal at the base of the flower.
Tall Leek Orchid
Donkey orchids Diuris orientis were flowering in profusion with their brightly colored yellow, orange and brown flowers standing out amongst the low-growing heathland plants.
Group admiring yellow Clone
The group was excited to find a yellow clone Donkey Orchid and soon after walking a little further found a large colony that had just opened overnight.
Colony of yellow Clones
Colonies of Hare orchids with their attractive white and red flowers were scattered through the site.
Red Beaks Pyrorchis nigricans were still flowering after many weeks.
Southern Bearded Greenhood
It was exciting when Penny Edmonson noticed a greenhood that did not look like our Anglesea species of Bearded Greenhood Pterostylis sp. aff. plumosa and it was identified as the Southern Bearded Greenhood P. tasmanica.
It was so exciting to see what was happening as a result of the burn. The feast started in August and looks like continuing for many weeks as the sun orchids come into flower.
Freesia refracta and Freesia alba X F. leichtlinii are declared weeds in the Surf Coast Shire because they spread easily and threaten to invade bushland. Freesias are perennial herbs that die back in summer and produce new foliage in winter. The highly fragrant trumpet-shaped flowers appearing in spring are white to cream and pink with yellow markings, shaded purple on outer surface. Each plant has at least two corms, one below the other, thus requiring deep digging to remove them.
More details about how to control this weed can be found in the archive of Weeds of the Month.
There are a number of wonderful local Friends Groups that provide ANGAIR members and the community with opportunities for involvement.