Resupination in Southern Marsh Orchids

The images shown below illustrate well examples of incomplete resupination in Southern Marsh Orchid, the images taken by Mick Oliver (single flower spike) and Ian McDonald (two flower spikes) on Thorne Moors recently illustrate the phenomenen observed when close inspection is made of either the plant in situ or resultant images on screen.

To assist, lines show individual flowers which have failed to turn sufficiently for the pollinia to be on the uppermost lip.  The first image (white lines) and the lower image (blue lines) show flowers at 180 degrees variance to the species norm.  The red line on the right hand image shows the flower ‘sidewards’ or at 90 degreees from normal.

SMO IMc 007

SMO MEO 1426


How common is this phenomenon and what species?  Feedback from readers observations and any accompanying images with data would be much appreciated.

A useful explanation can be found on the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew website.  An informative explanation can also be found in a short paper by Joseph Arditti.


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