Dactylorhiza x grandis: Identifications, data and opinions.
by hotfungus scientist
Dear Rich, Many thanks for the extra information on the absence of common spotted-orchid in the vicinity of the plant I identified (tentatively, which unfortunately can't be reflected in the current website - another thing for us to note down for future projects!) as Dactylorhiza x grandis. I did ponder the ID of this individual plant (but not the rest of your lovely praetermissa shots) as i thought the lip & the deportment of lateral sepals indicated hybrid parentage. As you know, there's no substitute for being in the field! Just to reassure you, your original identification will not be lost/over-written and will be submitted the BSBI as described on one of the project website pages. One of the 'concept's we are keen to communicate to participants is that us 'professionals' are not the font of all knowledge and that plant identification is often a matter of opinion and debate. Regards and many thanks for your hard work submitting records. Mark Spencer
Identifying individual Dacts in the field can be bad enough, doing them from photos can be a nightmare. In the field you can resort to squeezing the stem to check if it's a 'marsh' or 'spotted' and looking at the other plants present to build up a picture of the colony as a whole.
So far I've only submitted photos from colonies where I'm happy with the identification, and the contentious ones tend to flower later so aren't up yet - and you don't want hybrids anyway!.