Wild orchids and squirrels


It was two years since I have seen the lady-slippers orchids in the woods, when I went there two weeks ago. In Scandinavia we have only one kind of lady-slippers (Cypripedium calceolus), but almost 35 different wild orchids all together, at least in Norway. Many Norwegians don’t know we have wild orchids. They believe they live only in the tropics, and not all that close to the arctic. And many species are not easy to notice, because the flower can be quite small. But not this one. Our biggest orchid is also an endangered species and therefore protected.


Most of our orchids like calcareous and fertile soil, so in this wood there are also other flowers, like the Lily of the valley, a lot of them. It was a bit late in the season for them, but still I got to experience the nicest scent from these beauties.


While walking around in the forest photographing plants (that includes some crawling) I heard some noise high above. It was a red squirrel trying to find out what was going on. I just used my 100 mm macro to get his picture, so it is cropped. But at least I had a nice encounter. There are some more photos in my wild orchid photo gallery.

marisko_cypripedium calc_fcw


86 thoughts on “Wild orchids and squirrels

  1. I am sure I remember you featuring lady slippers once before – they are so lovely. That must have been over two years ago then! How time does fly. Squirrels are always a delight aren’t they?? They have such a strong fairly-tale image behind them which really helps with their reputation!!!


    1. Two years are flying like a wind it seems. Squirrels are a delight, and I miss the ones that used to live in the garden were I lived before. They don’t have a bad reputation in Norway, even if we know the take some young birds. Otherwise lovely fellows! Thanks, Brightlife.


  2. What stunning orchid shots Bente … the best shots always seem to come from dirty knees 🙂
    Lovely form and colours and am not surprised they are protected .. I’ve only come across the purple pyramidal and bee orchid here in UK .


    1. Hehe, you are right, I can’t wear my best outfit doing macro photography. I would love to see those orchids you mentioned, there are so many interesting kinds around the world. Thanks, Poppy.


    1. Aha, so that’s why your lady slipper photos are so brilliant. They look as if their were photographed in studio, perfect. Maybe you are lucky in seeing only single plants too, your s looks like “portraits”. Thanks, Steve.


  3. Dine orkideer er meget smukke med fine detaljer, Bente ❤ Jeg har set flere orkide typer i Danmark, men aldrig i skoven.
    Mange gode hilsner fra Danmark,


    1. Ble så nysgjerrig at jeg googlede vilde orkideer i Danmark og ser at dere også har ca 35 arter, alle fredet, slik som i Sverige. Orkideer kan være vanskelig å finne, og er vanligvis sjeldne pga. av det moderne landbruket (de liker eng med gammeldags slått uten maskiner og gjødning bl.a.) Du finner sikkert noen etterhvert. Takk for de gode hilsner, Hanna, og det samme til deg.


  4. These were common in the Nilgiris and I hoped to see some this time, but didn’t spot even one. So delighted to see your beautiful captures Bente. The last shot does conjure up grumpy Pixar faces 😀


  5. Beautiful capture of the flowers, Bente! I especially like the sweet Lily of the Valley.

    The inquisitive squirrel is also a great shot. Last summer we had a young one who discovered our bird feeder. She was quite bold! One day she decided to see what our dog was doing, so she ran up the “bird feeder” tree, hopped across three other trees, and then ran partway down the last tree to get closer and peek at MacKenzie sleeping underneath. I chose not to go inside to get my camera and try to capture her antics as I was afraid it would scare her/chase her off, and always regretted it; this image of yours is the exact expression I remember from our visitor! Thank you for the memories. 🙂


  6. Ladyslippers are part of my world… and most often, those who know where they are don’t tell… to protect the lovelies. 🙂


  7. Hi Bente, my children and I have always called these ‘fairy slippers’ . I would still like to believe that there are fairies in our gardens, magical is better!


  8. JUST TOO BEAUTIFUL FOR WORDS!! GREAT PICTURES! This year I have been very lucky because 3 of our orchids bloomed and I just have gone crazy with taking pictures of their beauty but to see wild orchids – now that is something.!!! Thank you very much, Mari


  9. Fascynują mnie konwalie i mam dużo własnych zdjęć tych skromnych ale pięknych kwiatów.
    Ale moje proste fotografowanie jakże różni się od Twojej fotografii….
    Spróbuję Cię doścignąć, ha, ha…
    Bardzo serdeczne pozdrowienia , Marysia


  10. Happy orchids to you. I’m not surprised to hear that many Norwegians don’t know there are orchids in your country.

    My mother used to grow lily of the valley in the shade behind our house in the suburbs of New York. What a wonderful scent those flowers have.


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