Bird’s-nest orchid (Neottia nidus-avis)

This is a protected decaying orchid species. In the Peszér-forest we can find it more often in the closed oak groves.

The bird’s nest orchid (Neottia nidus-avis) is a chlorophyll-free, plant species that parasites on fungi. The bird’s nest orchid is a herbaceous, perennial plant 20-30 cm tall. From its horizontally growing rootstock (rhizome) in the soil, a number of short, chunky roots grow, making it resemble a bird’s nest; hence the name of the plant.

It opens in May-June.

Its seeds ripen by August. It attracts pollinating insects with nectar produced by honeydew. It is mainly pollinated by flies and other dicotyledons. If pollination is missed, after a while the crumbling pollen pack (pollinium) falls on the pistil, i.e. self-pollination takes place. Sometimes the shoot does not even get out from under the ground, it blooms in the soil and pollinates itself.

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Photo by Judit Hartdégen and Arnold Erdélyi, May 2019

Protected species oakeylife photos Peszér-forest protected species