Thursday 6 August 2020

Autumn Lady's Tresses

I've been looking forward to seeing Autumn Lady's Tresses (at Dawlish Warren) all summer - the last of the orchids to emerge. Kev texted me yesterday to say they were out, and I was going to wait until more had emerged, in a week or so's time, but in the end I just couldn't.
Apparently you can find these orchids in Exmouth but they're growing on peoples' lawns. I've set myself a little target of finding some accessible ones locally.
 Great to see Alan, Dave and Lee this morning.

I have to say I think this is my new favourite orchid - it's just stunning! Apparently the flowers open sequentially, bottom to top, to avoid self-pollination by insects. The way the plant is delicately twisted adds to its appeal and gives rise to the Latin name Spiranthes spiralis.

Perennial Glasswort

Cirl Bunting

Marsh Helleborine - I wasn't expecting to see these still going strong.


  1. Some lovely orchids, Matt. I didn't see Autum Lady's-tresses any when I went to the North Downs near Dorking a week ago. Will probably go again in a week as I also didn't see Adonis Blue or Silver-spotted Skipper, so another excuse for a visit. As an aside I was pleased on Friday to catch up with my first British Southern Emerald Damsels at Canvey dyke on Friday. 3 species of emerald damsel there-only Common lacking as well as 20 Blue-eyed Hawkers.

  2. Hi Neil - thank you. Canvey Dyke sounds unbelievable - wish it was a bit closer to here! We only have Emerald Damselfly down here and Blue-eyed Hawker is mega - in fact I'm not sure there have been any records in Devon yet. Adonis Blue and Silver-spot Skipper not in Devon either. All the best. Matt

  3. Have you found any more habitats of these this year? Would love to see some but i'm closer to plymouth...might just take the hour drive however!