Past-prime orchid


Normally, I attempt to post a picture that shows something at its peak of perfection. 

I am willing to make an exception. It is, after all, the Giant Helleborine. This flower is one of our local wild orchids, but one that I have not managed to see for eight years. Yesterday, I was told of hundreds of them having bloomed a week ago along the lakeshore. So today, I headed out to see them. They were there, as claimed, but were now past their prime. 

Ah well, it is the Giant Helleborine, I now know where to look for it next year.

These are a few of the many Giant Helleborines that were spotted along the lakeshore.

One of the flowers looked a tad bedraggled. 

As a reference, I include a shot I took in 2010. Maybe next year, I can capture this orchid again. 


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4 Responses to Past-prime orchid

  1. Della C. Fenkner says:

    Thanks for reminding us that all things have a unique beauty
    and value even beyond their prime. Della

  2. Denise Brownlie says:

    Hear, hear! True of orchids; animals (my 19-year old cat); people too. Most of my friends are 75 or older; a special few are 92,94. Still understanding everything, and happy for each new day that comes. “Young” and “Perfect” are much over-rated !
    These photos are beautiful, more interesting than many pictures of flowers at their prime.
    (But we enjoy those also, Alistair!)

    • Alistair says:

      Denise, Della, for flowers, in their prime implies reproductive prime. With people, the criteria are different and more subtle: Is it reproductive prime or intellectual prime? These usually occur at different ages. It is often the case that one’s intellectual prime occurs rather late in life. This means that it can be the case of old and perfect.

  3. Margo says:

    As I look forward to my 70th birthday in less than a month, I find the need to remind acquaintances of less years that (a large percentage of the time) I feel more like 32, and expect that most of us, especially in this idyllic part of the world, have similar feelings. Old is a state of mind, mostly. Thank you for illustrating that it is not only humans that show their beauty “past their prime”.

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