Orchid hunt begins as part of WildCare wildlife habitat scheme

Sixty dairy farmers are becoming orchid sleuths for a project to spot native varieties of the flower notorious for its camouflage.

The Waitrose farmers will help the WildCare wildlife habitat scheme to complete its first official records of flowers.

Hot varieties include the bee orchid, the autumn lady's tresses orchid and the burnt orchid, which has flowers said to look like people in pink-spotted pyjamas.

WildCare works with farmers who have turned at least a tenth of their land over to wildlife habitats, said business services manager Tim Oliver.

The initiative is run by the company AB Agri in partnership with Waitrose Select milk farmers. Booklets will help farmers with any identification doubts.

"There are more than 50 species of wild orchid native to the British Isles," said Oliver. "Many are rare but are just never spotted.

"They are small and blend in so well with their surroundings. But orchids are some of the most iconic flowers of the British countryside and deserve to be preserved."

He said hitting the right balance between food production and helping wildlife was one of the main challenges of the WildCare scheme.


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

Pest & Disease Factsheet - Peach leaf curl

Pest & Disease Factsheet - Peach leaf curl

Growers of fruit and ornamental trees need to be aware of this disfiguring disease.

Business planning - Demand management

Business planning - Demand management

Seasonal demand may be inevitable but peaks and troughs can be managed to minimise business impact, Neville Stein explains.



These heralds of spring are highly suited to being planted in tree circles, grass and rock gardens, says Miranda Kimberley.

Opinion... Get rid of plastics in Horticulture

Opinion... Get rid of plastics in Horticulture

Blue Planet II eloquently showed the rich tapestry of life in the oceans. It also focused public awareness on plastic pollution damaging wildlife.

Opinion... Gardening needs better promotion

Opinion... Gardening needs better promotion

British horticultural firms and organisations have not been the best at working together to promote our industry.

Opinion... A wish list for unblinkered thinking among our politicians

Opinion... A wish list for unblinkered thinking among our politicians

Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Horticulture Week Top 60 Ornamentals nurseries

See our exclusive ranking of ornamentals nurseries by annual turnover. 

Tim Edwards

Boningales Nursery chairman Tim Edwards on the business of ornamentals production

Read Tim Edwards

Pest & Disease Tracker bulletin 

The latest pest and disease alerts, how to treat them, plus EAMU updates, sent direct to your inbox.

Sign up here

Are you a landscape supplier?

Horticulture Week Landscape Project Leads

If so, you should be receiving our new service for Horticulture Week subscribers delivering landscape project leads from live, approved, planning applications across the UK.

Peter Seabrook

Inspiration and insight from travels around the horticultural world

Read more Peter Seabrook articles