Dodgydoug's picture

Marsh Orchid

Observed: 6th June 2012 By: DodgydougDodgydoug’s reputation in PlantsDodgydoug’s reputation in PlantsDodgydoug’s reputation in Plants
Common Spotted Orchid 1
Common Spotted Orchid
Species interactions

No interactions present.


Chalkie's picture


Could be another Heath Spotted? (Not that I'm entirely convinced they are totally separate species, but I'm only an orchid beginner really.)

Syrphus's picture

It is not a spotted orchid.

It is not a spotted orchid. HSO and CSO are very distinct species, with totally different ecology (acid vs basic soils). In some places in the W Isles you can have 100% CSO on the machair on the seaward side of the road, and 100% HSO on the moor on the inland side.



recording wildlife with The Recorder's Year on

Chalkie's picture


Maybe I got a bit too downhearted reading the BSBI article (New Journal of Botany) about marsh orchids last week! It is all rather mind-boggling how many times they get renamed, lumped, split etc. And I really should have taken on board the soil requirements for HSO and CSO - I got the impression last year that I'd seen both on one site (other people identifying them) - but maybe they were where different soils were close together, as you describe above. Thanks again.

cicuta58's picture

Nob End

This is a known site for D. fuchsii x purpurella (which to me looks like praetermissa). Just shows how difficult they are!


Chalkie's picture


And one of my books says 'Some investigators suggest that D praetermissa could very well have been developed as a result of hybridisation between the Early Marsh (D incarnata) and the Common (D fuchsii) or Heath Spotted (D maculata)' - but it is an old book - 1979! and by Scandinavians, who apparently think differently about these orchids to UK people.

I don't like giving up though!