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Nova Scotia's Four Lady's Slippers.

Of the dozen species of Lady's Slippers that are present in North America we are fortunate enough to have four of them that make their home in Nova Scotia.One of them, the Pink Lady's Slipper, Cypripedium acaule is the most common of the four and indeed is the most common of all Nova Scotia's orchids. 
The Pink Lady's Slipper,Cypripedium acaule.
This orchid can be found from one end of the province to the other in either it's pink form or it's less common white form, albiflorum.I have seen it growing in a woodland setting and also in the transition from soil to sand in a beach area. I have also seen a colony of acaule where there are pink,white and shades in between the two colours, see photo immediately below in centre.
Photograph 1 was taken 12th June.
Photograph 2 was taken 23rd June.
Photograph 3 was taken 7th June.
 
ALL FOUR IMAGES IN THE COLUMN TO THE RIGHT ARE CLICKABLE.

PHOTOGRAPH 1.
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Pink Lady's Slipper,Cypripediuim acaule.

PHOTOGRAPH 2.
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Pink Lady's Slipper showing grades of colour in between Pink and the form albiflorum.

PHOTOGRAPH 3.
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CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE.

 The three other Lady's Slippers in the Province are much fussier as to where they will and will not grow. All three,in general, require the presence of gypsum in the substrate.The other specific conditions are outlined for each flower under their headings below.
 
The Yellow Lady's Slipper,Cypripedium calceolus.
One variety of this orchid parviflorum is found in wet places while the other, pubescens, is found where gypsum is present.The one pictured below is pubescens. Note the spirally twisted petals. This flower can reach a height of up to 24 inches. Some people can have an allergic reaction if they come in to contact with this flower,the reaction being somewhat similar to poison ivy.
All the photographs of calceolus(below) were taken on 14th June.

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Yellow Lady's Slipper,Cypripedium calceolus.

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Yellow Lady's Slipper, Cypripedium calceolus.

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CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE.

The Ram's Head Lady's Slipper, Cypripedium arietinum.
This orchid is our rarest lady's slipper and it also has the distinction of being the earliest of them all to bloom. It is usually in bloom by the end of May and indeed my photographs were taken on 31st May.
The Ram's Head Lady's Slipper is certainly well named as it resembles the head of a charging ram when photographed at the right angle.

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Ram's Head Lady's Slipper, Cypripedium arietinum.

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Rams Head Lady's Slipper Cypripedium arietinum.

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CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE.

The Showy Lady's Slipper,Cypripedium reginae.
This flower is a truly magnificent sight to see when in full bloom. It is also extremely rare. It likes a wet habitat in a thickly treed environment and the substrate must contain gypsum. It also grows in clumps. The ones pictured were one of three clumps within 30-40 yards of each other. Each grouping having some 30 or more blooms.
Also growing with this orchid were two other orchids. The Tall Leafy White Orchid, Platanthera dilatata and also The Tall Leafy Green Ortchid, Platanthera hyperborea.Both of these orchids also like a wet environment with a constant supply of water.
The photographs below were taken on 27th June.

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Showy Lady's Slipper,Cypripedium reginae.

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Showy Lady's Slipper,Cypripedium reginae.

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CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE.



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All photographs on this site have been taken by myself and are copyright. Copying images from this site is illegal.
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