Common Spotted-orchid

Dactylorhiza fuchsii

Mid-May to July

From mid-May onwards, these beautiful, tall flowers can be found in several locations on the Commons along with up to ten other species of orchid. I wanted to include the common spotted-orchid in the project as I had seen this species in good numbers whilst out walking on the commons with my family; it is a flower that many people will have seen but may not have stopped to observe more closely.

The common spotted-orchid which I chose to depict is both in flower and bud and has a pink colouration; examples can be found with white through to pink and purple flowers on the commons. It has deep coloured spots on the leaves and these grow in a rosette with larger leaves around the base of the plant.

The structure of the flower itself was of interest to me, and these have an ovary that twists to put the flower into a better position for pollination. I was also able to find seedheads on some specimens later in the season.