COMMON TWAYBLADE

Neottia ovata

(Formerly: Listera ovata [but Genus Listera is now abandoned])
Orchid Family [Orchidaceae]  

month8May month8jun month8june month8jul month8july

status
statusZnative
flower
flower8green
inner
inner8yellow
morph
morph8zygo
petals
petalsZ2
stem
stem8round

22nd May 2015, Alt Rifle Range, Hightown, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
There are a couple of pairs of broad leaves near the base of Twayblade here, which means there are two actual plants here since they have only two broad and opposite leaves each.


22nd May 2015, Alt Rifle Range, Hightown, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
Two plants. Flowers at tip not yet opened.


12th June 2008, Monks Dale, Derbyshire Photo: © RWD
An easily over-looked plant in light-green camouflage, up to 60cm high. Leafless upper stem, flower in a well-separated spike at the top.


12th June 2008, Monks Dale, Derbyshire Photo: © RWD
Flowers yellowish-green with a similarly-coloured long drooping apron-like lip.


3rd June 2012, near Gourdon, Lot region of France Photo: © Kelly Finney


12th June 2008, Monks Dale, Derbyshire Photo: © RWD
The drooping lip is forked in the lowest third of its 7-15mm length.


12th June 2008, Monks Dale, Derbyshire Photo: © RWD
From a full-frontal perspective, the flower looks like an alien wearing a short cowled head-piece, with four short curved arms, one pair raised above its head. Its small head is yellow. The aliens can be any-which-way up, few even upside down.


12th June 2008, Monks Dale, Derbyshire Photo: © RWD
The four 'arms' may redden.


16th July 2011, Dugort, Achill Island, Eire. Photo: © Paula O'Meara
Stems tend to redden in high summer. From the side, the flower has a slightly inflated sepal-tube, a little like those of White Campion.


22nd May 2015, Alt Rifle Range, Hightown, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
As-yet un-opened flower buds at tip showing the four sepals.


22nd May 2015, Alt Rifle Range, Hightown, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
A bract just below the flower stalk (petiole).


11th May 2012, near Gourdon, Lot region of France Photo: © Kelly Finney
A young specimen, flowers not yet open.


12th June 2008, Monks Dale, Derbyshire Photo: © RWD
There are just a single opposite pair of very broad stubby stem leaves close to the ground, although they are not basal leaves. Stems have very short fine whitish hairs.


A member of the Orchid Family of plants, although not rare.

Can be mistaken for: Lesser Twayblade (Neottia cordata), but that grows in bog and moors often hidden beneath Heather or in pinewoods and is much shorter at up to 10cm, with leaves more heart-shaped and the flowers are often dull reddish-green as well as more hooded.

Frog Orchid (Dactylorhiza viridis) can also be confused with Common Twayblade, but the latter has longer legs and the former sometimes has reddish-brown parts on the skyward side of the flowers when in drier places.

Distinguishing Feature : A single pair of broad but stubby leaves on the stem suspended above ground level and with no other leaves anywhere else. The flower looks like an alien with a long, split at the bottom, yellowish-green apron.

Likes to grown in grassy places and in woods. Seems to prefer lime.


  Neottia ovata  ⇐ Global Aspect ⇒ Orchidaceae  

Distribution
family8Orchid family8Orchidacaea

 BSBI maps
genus8Neottia
Neottia
(Twayblades)

COMMON TWAYBLADE

Neottia ovata

(Formerly: Listera ovata [but Genus Listera is now abandoned])
Orchid Family [Orchidaceae]  

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