Celebrate What’s Right with the World: Small Purple Fringed Orchids


When my three lads were young I wanted to encourage them to pay attention to wild flowers. How best to do that? Offer them cash of course. I told them about how an American botanist had travelled to Manitoba in the mid-1980s and discovered 2 rare orchids. One at the Tall Grass Prairie which I have already posted about. The other was the c (Linnaeus) Lindley) which he found at Buffalo Point where we had a cottage.At the time no one knew we had it in Manitoba.

I tried to find it for a few years and then enlisted my sons. I offered them $5 each if they found it. I described it for them and they never actually found it (neither did I). They found a similar flower. Sedge Nettle that is actually also found at Buffalo Point in very similar habitat. But they never found what I was looking for.

Then one day I got an exact location from friends of mine who told me where to find it and I did find it. 
I had to wade into some pretty deep bog but managed to find it. A couple of years later I found another patch at another much easier location. I found them right in the ditch! I love ditches!

That is where I went to this summer and found only 4 specimens. Usually I have found about 20 specimens. Today just a few. Friends have explained to me that this is likely because it was dry here last fall. Like cactuses, they are dependent on rainfall in the previous autumn rather than the current summer in which rainfall was quite abundant here at least in the spring and early summer. I guess we had only a little rainfall last fall. What a pity. But at least I found a couple of specimens and two were in pretty good shape. So as DeWitt Jones, National Geographic photographer advised, I decided to celebrate what‘s right with the world. What was right today was these gems.


After I photographed Low Prairie Rose near St. Labre Manitoba, I drove all the way to Buffalo Point to see and photograph Small Purple-fringed orchids. It was quite sunny so I had to use a diffuser.

After that I went to Fire and Water Bistro and enjoyed a beer and burger. The food is great again. Hooray for the chef!

After that I drove home very tired but very satisfied with a great jaunt. Thank you Chris!

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