Ophrys apifera

Ophrys apifera
One flowering sized tuber. The famous Bee orchid is sought by many hardy orchid enthusiasts. It is found in a variety of alkaline situations throughout England and Wales. In the wild it is well known for colonising suitable disturbed ground, especially in quarry and colliery areas. It has a relatively short life span and often does not come up in successive years. This leads to colonies varying from thousands one year to hundreds the next.

It can be grown in a pot, garden or meadow provided the soil is sufficiently alkaline. It does not bulk up vegetatively and the chances of seed germinating in the soil are limited. To keep the plant growing for a number of years and flowering regularly it is advisable to dead head the flower spike so that the self pollinating plant does not use energy to produce seed but uses it to produce a larger tuber for the following year.

Like all of the tuberous orchids continuation of the species is a balance between massive seed production or slow vegetative tuber increase.

It is important to treat plants correctly on receipt. They will have come from my unheated alpine house and need to be kept in a similar situation if they have a full rosette. All tubers are checked before being dispatched and only guaranteed for 14 days after receipt. I cannot take responsibility for the effects of winter weather or mistakes made by the purchaser. Potted tubers sent out from mid August until late winter. All tubers have been checked and any problems shoukld be reported within 14 days of receipt.


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