There are some 240 different ophrys around Europe. Some authorities identify each as a seperate species whilst others believe that many are just variations on a few species.
The UK has only five native species and of these only the Bee Orchid and the Fly Orchid can be grown outside in a wide area of the country. The two Spider orchids only grow along the south coast.
All ophrys grow in alkaline soils, often colonising areas of disturbed soil particularly those left after building works.
Customers are sent tubers ready potted. If the tubers are to be planted out then this can be done immediately, providing the ground conditions are slightly damp. This is especially so if the tuber has already started to grow.
Plants to be grown in pots should be put into a trough of sand to ensure the tuber keeps cool. The sand should be kept damp. As the plant begins to grow increase the watering until the tuber compost is slightly damp at all times. The surround air temperature should not be allowed to get to high and provide maximum ventilation throughout the autumn.
Never plant out fully developed plants as this will damage the roots and severely check the plant.
Tubers are sent out potted to UK customers provided there is not too much growth. This depends on how quickly the different species form their rosette in the autumn. Tubers sent to other countries can only be sent if they are not going to deteriorate in transit.