The Man Orchid

The Man orchid is easily recognisable by the small pale green flowers which on closer inspection appear to look like a small man with a red and green helmet on.  It has several small low leaves and the number of flower stems vary from plant to plant.  The height can also vary and can range from 15 cm through to 40 cm or more.  It is similar in appearance to Common Tyablade, but the confusion is much less when the flowers are formed and the "man" is visible.

Unfortunately, the Man Orchid is another of the British orchid species that is currently in decline, and is now found in about 15 English counties. These range from Lincolnshire across to Gloucestershire and down to the south coast.  It is reasonably easy to find at known sites which are on old abandoned ground mainly chalk or limestone including some old quarries.

These images were taken in Cambridgeshire over a few years.