Peter Turner's picture

Orchid 005

Observed: 25th June 2010 By: Peter Turner
Orchid 005
Orchid  003
Orchid  006

Height 40 cms; flower head 13 cm; Broad leaves 'half-heartedly' mottled. Greater Butterfly orchids flowering at same time within 100m. Did not flower in 2011 - neither did any local butterfly orchids at 2 nearby sites

Species interactions

No interactions present.

Species with which Common Spotted-orchid (Dactylorhiza fuchsii) interacts


cicuta58's picture


Could this be a hybrid between Common Spotted and Butterfly Orchids? The flower lobes are very long for CPO.


Tim Rich's picture

I wondered that too (and

I wondered that too (and before I read cicuta's comment!)

Tim Rich

Rachy Ramone's picture

The leaf blotches and general shape...

...immediately said Common Spotted to me, but of course the colour is wrong and, more to the point, the shape of the flower is wrong, the lower "points" are too long.

I'll be interested to hear what others suggest.

Rachy Ramone

How to take close-ups with cheap phone and hand-lens:
Field Guides for Budding Botanists:

lavateraguy's picture

No photographs online ...

... of Dactylanthera x chevallieriana (which is the name in Stace, but has the wrong Plantanthera parent).

martinjohnbishop's picture

Tried to find information about hybrids
shows D. f x P. b but looks like Platanthera

Shaw JMH. 2005 What name for the hybrid Dactylorhiza x Platanthera? Orchid Rev. 113. (1265): 266-267.

Name ×Rhizanthera martysiensis Balayer, 1986 - hybrid with Platanthera chlorantha

Plant Name Details

Orchidaceae × Rhizanthera martysiensis Balayer

Bull. Soc. Bot. France, Lett. Bot. 133(3): 283. 1986
Nomenclatural Notes:
nom. inval. genus name not validly published

France (Southwestern Europe, Europe)

Hybrid Parentage:
(Dactylorhiza fuchsii (Druce) Soó × Platanthera chlorantha Cust. ex Rchb.)

hybridparent:Orchidaceae Dactylorhiza fuchsii (Druce) Soó Nom. Nova Gen. Dactylorhiza 8 (1962).

hybridparent:Orchidaceae Platanthera chlorantha Cust. ex Rchb. in Moessl. Handb. Gewächsk., ed. 2. 2: 1565. 1829

basionym of:Orchidaceae × Dactylanthera martysiensis (Balayer) J.M.H.Shaw Orchid Rev. 113(1265): 267. 2005

There is a name but I could find no picture!

lavateraguy's picture


Not knowing orchids well I first wondered if this was an Orchis sp. (As everyone else has noted the labellum lobes are much narrower than usual for Dactylorhiza fuchsii and the flower colour is also atypical.)

Fide Stace Plantanthera x Dactylorhiza hasn't been definitely recorded in the UK.

Distinguishing aberrant plants from hybrids is a non-trivial activity, but in either case this looks like a botanically interesting specimen.

I suggest that the observation be edited to obscure the location, before a collector finds it, and the details be forwarded to the country recorder.

lavateraguy's picture

Flower colour

Colour wise this seems to match the white variants of Dactylorhiza.

Peter Turner's picture

Orchid ?hybrid

Many thanks for your comments - I am still searching for a further appearance of the beast but have been unsuccessful for the last 3 years.
The folk at Kew are awaiting a sample for DNA analysis.