No less than 12 orchid fanatics set out from Hermanus this morning at 6 o’clock to see what we could find in the burn in Fernkloof. These included Herbert Staerker and Callan Cohen, both experts in their field, so we were in very good company!
It was a perfect summer day with virtually no wind, although we welcomed the slight breeze to cool off a bit. We had not gone far when we came across a good specimen of Acrolophia lamellata, followed by a Holothrix cernua. Soon we were surrounded by Disa bivalvata and we must have seen thousands of them as we progressed our search for it’s near relative, Disa atricapilla. We found a few hybrids, before eventually coming across two small ones, suggesting that this is only the beginning for this species. Disa bodkinii, which was one of our targets was past its best and we only found a few old specimens, but we did see many Pachites bodkinii.
In total, we saw at least 18 different orchid species, which was pretty good, but most of us were well and truly finished after a 10 hour day on the mountain…..but it was well worth it, as nothing can compare to knowing that we were standing in fields of orchids enjoying a spectacle that we will probably never see again!