When looking in my orchid books, I always admired this "Butterfly-orchid" (Anacamptis papilionacea - former Orchis papilionacea). The colour and the design on the lip with red to purple dots, dashees and strikes radiating from the base of the lip to the edge is realy spectacular for a flower.
On Crete there are 2 subspesies to be found. Ssp heroica is early flowering and due to the relative early season we only could find plants gone over. (disapointed !) The ssp. alibertis however was coming to bloom (14 days befor normal flowering time !). For me a dream came true finding them !
Taking good pictures of this subspecies is rather difficult because the lip is spade-like: The edges of the lip are always curved upwards so the unique lining-pattern is only visible from the top-side and that is an awesome angle for pictures... In this particular image I chose to use backlight in order to accentuate the lovely dark lines on the sepals, petals and lip. (Diameter of the lip about 10 mm).
Kria Vrisi (Crete - Greece) - 09/04/2010
© Johan Dierckx
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All species are photographed in their natural habitat, without cutting or capturing them, and with maximal respect and the least possible disturbance to the environment.
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