Monday, February 4, 2013

Provincial Post - Prince Edward Island

     
    Prince Edward Island (PEI) is a small island tucked in between three other provinces on the Atlantic side. The orchid Cypripedium acaule is the provincial flower for our smallest province and is probably one of the prettiest native orchids we have. It is more familiarly known as the Pink Lady's Slipper. It is a pink flowering orchid but there is also a white version out there in the wild.



    The Pink Lady's Slipper stands about six to fifteen inches with two oval shaped basal leaves. Each stalk carries a single flower. The pouch of the C. acaule opens in a slit that runs down the front of the labellum rather than a round opening and is the only orchid known to do this. The sepals vary from yellow-brown to maroon and the pouch colour ranges from deep rose to white. The Pink Lady's Slipper blooms between April and June preferably in a naturally wet habitat. It can be found in dry to wet forests, bogs, brushy barrens, heath, and roadsides in highly acidic soil. Because of a fungus  needed for growth, and  high acid requirements, C. acaule is difficult to grow in the average garden and is unlikely to survive attempts at transplantation. If the plant's blossom does not cycle through, it will not regenerate; for this reason, it is recommended that the flower not be picked.

    C. acaule can be found in the eastern third of the United States and north into Canada, coming very close to the Arctic circle. It is considered endangered in Illinois and Tennessee, Vulnerable in New York, and Unusual in Georgia.


    Pink Lady's Slipper was used by the various Indian tribes for male disorders which may mean urinary tract problems. It has also been used for love potions and sedatives.

    Pink Lady's Slipper is also known as Moccasin Flower, Two-leaved Lady's Slipper, and the Stemless Lady's-slipper.


    photos from wikipedia





    Where is Prince Edward Island?
    courtesy::http://www.map-of-canada.org/about.htm   

    PEI is that small island above New Brunswick (green) and Nova Scotia (orange).

    9 comments:

    1. Jest śliczny. Szkoda, że u nas ich nie ma. Pozdrawiam.
      It is beautiful. It is unfortunate that with us they do not. Yours.

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      1. Maybe you do not have this orchid but you must have some orchids native to your country.

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    2. Nice! This name "Pink Lady's Slipper" reminds me of a Polish name of a monkshood (aconitum nappelus) which is in English translation 'Mother of God's slippers' - because these blue flowers look like slippers :) I'm quite interested in English and Polish common names of flowers and plants, they're really surprising sometimes.

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      1. I did not know that. But you are right the monkshood flowers do look like slippers too!

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    3. It is a beautiful orchid, also native to Britain. I have both Cypripedium x ventricosum and Cypripedium reginae on my wish list for 2013, but they are quite expensive and you can't just have one of each...I should have ideal conditions for them at the bottom of my garden so it would be fun to give it a go :-)

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      1. When you do get them for your garden send me some photos!

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    4. That is a beautiful Lady Slipper. It is not legal to dig them up in Canada is it? Many people do here and they do not survive transplant, so it is ashamed to lose them from the wild.

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      1. It does not appear to be illegal in Ontario. I am having finding out with absolute certainty but this is what it seems. One site said it is uncommon, perhaps they are not endangered here.

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    5. I remember coming across lady Slippers in the forest when I lived in Nova Scotia. I think these particular flowers were pale yellow, but it has been a lot of years, and memory may have failed me. They are such beautiful flowers. I wish they were easier to grow.

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