Ophrys apifera (NL: Bijenorchis / EN: Bee Orchid / DE: Bienen-Ragwurz) is a perennial, temperate climate species of orchid generally found growing on semi-dry turf, on limestone, calcareous dunes or in open areas in woodland. The Bee Orchid develops small rosettes of leaves in autumn. They slowly continue to grow during winter. Flowers appear the following year. Each year, it produces from one to ten flowers on a spike, blooming from June to July. The flowers are almost exclusively self-pollinating in the northern ranges of the plants distribution, pollination by the solitary bee Eucera occurs sometimes in the Mediterranean area. The petals are marginal and spread out, coloured mauve to pink. The flower is furry to the touch and is quite variable in the pattern of colouration, but usually brownish-red with yellow markings.
Image: Visé (B) - 28/05/2011
© 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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