Montana Outdoors

May 21, 2008

Calypso

It has only been a few years since I first saw one of these, but now spring just wouldn’t be the same for me without them.

The Calypso orchid or Fairyslipper (Calypso bulbosa).

Calypso orchid or Fairyslipper (Calypso bulbosa)

Calypso orchid or Fairyslipper (Calypso bulbosa)

To be able to grow at all, Calypso orchids need a particular mycorrhizal fungus in the soil to provide sugars and minerals necessary for them to sprout and therefore they can only be found where this fungus is available. To me this is an excellent illustration of the interdependence between life forms and an example of the necessity of maintaining sufficient habitat for natural biodiversity.

MountainNature

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