A Pair of Pink Lady's Slipper Orchids

A trip to the Scotia Barrens revealed a happy milestone I've been waiting for: the pink lady's slipper orchids, Cypripedium acaule, are starting to bloom! T. Tiger has a nose better than any truffle pig; he can sniff out an orchid a mile away!

So I took my orchid-sniffing Tiger, and off we went to the Barrens. And we discovered many lady's slippers, some right along the main trail, most of them still wearing their green robes. But soon they'll exchange them for pretty pink gowns, like these two ladies are wearing.

They are running a bit late this year; we often see the blooms by the first week or so of May. But late is better than never, and the show is just starting. So you should be able to see these blooms for several weeks.

The orchid requires a highly acidic environment and it has a relationship with a specific fungus in the soil. I saw several orchids that appeared to be growing right out of the bottom of a tree. It made me wonder about the symbiotic relationship between this type of orchid and the trees that it selects.

I took many, many orchid photos on this day, and this one is a personal favorite. If you've ever watched Little House on the Prairie on TV, this reminded me of Mary and Laura walking to school together; just two old-fashioned girls in their bonnets and pink gowns.

Here is a song for pink: Tori Amos, with Pink and Glitter.

Sign in or get an account to comment.