The excitement of seeing a VioletHelleborine in the half-light of abeechwood, or a Bee Orchidresplendent in the grass is not easilyforgotten. Wild orchids excite peoplefor many reasons. They are exotic andstrange, delicate and beautiful.Beneath their intriguing appearance isan equally fascinating biology: manyspecies have developed intimaterelationships with fungi to grow andgerminate. Several species haveevolved bizarre adaptations to ensurepollination. Above all, it is their raritythat has impassioned botanists andplant collectors for centuries. A fewBritish orchids are so rare and grow at just one or two sites that they areprotected in law and the exactlocations are a closely-guarded secret. The three counties of Berkshire,Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire arehome to 36 of the 56 native Britishspecies, making themthe best area inthe country to find wild orchids. ThisGuide concentrates on thecharacteristic appearance of the 36species. It features the flowering time,key habitat information and where tolook locally. It also includes similarspecies with clear distinctions to helpavoid confusion when identifying aplant in the field.Sadly, the majority of orchidsdescribed in this Guide are declining innumber due to the scarcity of thehabitats that they depend upon. Theancient grasslands, woodlands andwetlands that were once commonthroughout our landscape aredisappearing at an alarming rate. Wehope that this Guide inspires you toseek out some the orchids that arementioned and to support theorganisations that look after thenature reserves and special placeswhere they thrive.
Where to look
A GUIDE TOFINDING
in Berkshire,Buckinghamshire &Oxfordshire
Peter Creed &Rachel Hudson
©Peter Creed &Rachel Hudson 2013All photographs ©Peter CreedAll rights reserved. No part of thepublication may be reproduced, stored in aretrieval system, or transmitted, in any formor by any means electronic, mechanical,photocopying, recording or otherwise,without prior permission of thepublishers.First published 2013British Library-in-Publication DataA catalogue record for this book isavailable fromthe British LibraryISBN978 1 874357 57 5Designed by Naturebureau,36 Kingfisher Court, Hambridge Road,Newbury, Berkshire, RG14 5SJ
Published by Pisces Publications(the imprint of Naturebureau)Printed by Portland Print,Kettering, Northamptonshire
Orchid walks are a great way to findout more about orchids in yourarea. The Berks, Bucks &OxonWildlife Trust organises guidedwalks with a local expert in thespring and summer (for details visit
). Or see the‘
’section in the local press.