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Wutach Gorge in Germany

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Has anyone here been to the Wutach Gorge during the second half of April? I can see that the bus that moves hikers from one spot to another doesn't begin running till the very end of said month which may be my clue. That said, if any orchids at all were going to be in bloom before that, I'd brave it. Looking for orchids in situ is my favorite thing to do when visiting a new to me place. I suppose I'm interested in any European natives that may be in bloom in April and where they are because the trip is still flexible at this point. Attached is a photo of Calypso bulbosa in Tobermory, Ontario from 2014.

 

JeanLux

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Southwestern Germany, border with Switzerland !!!! Nice flowers for sure, maybe somewhat far to visit from here :) !!!! Jean
 
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Only in the far north. The photo (taken in Canada) was shared as a testament of my willingness to travel to far away places to see orchids in situ hoping it might make the locals take me seriously. We're going to Venice in April and I'm trying to decide if I want to follow it up with time in Switzerland, Germany or Great Britain. Kew is certainly a draw, though it's my experience that nothing beats seeing plants growing in the wild.
 

The Mutant

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It's called Norna in Swedish after the Norns (nornor in Swedish) in Norse mythology. :D
 

polyantha

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I know a spot in Switzerland near my home where you could see 2500 Cypripedium calceolus in flower at the same time.
 
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I'm very interested, polyantha. If you'd be willing to PM me details I'd really appreciate it. Posting specifics publicly isn't in the plants' best interests.
 

tonyw

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Lovely picture of the calypso.We were at Tobermory a couple of years ago, too late for the calypso but spot on for cypripediums,calopogon,pogonia etc.

As to your trip to Europe I think you are far too early for orchids in the north. We have seen the cypripedium in Switzerland at the beginning of July.Here in NW England it has been mid May At the begining of April it is ideal in Southern Spain for orchis and ophrys but across Europe things like dactylorhiza bloom much later starting in May in Greece and later as you move northwards.
 
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Yeah, that was my thought, tonyw, but I'm trying to make sure--thanks for the feedback. I'm used to showing up to Tobermory a little early (before the official orchid festival) which is why I'm reliably able to catch Calypso bulbosa and Cypripedium arietinum in bloom; as a result, I'm often too early for anything else, but those are my favorites anyway...and I dislike crowds.
 

tonyw

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We dislike crowds too and were not there for the festival. The Cyp arietinum had just faded and so we missed them but the C. pubescens were out in hundreds and there was a wonderful stand of C. reginae in a ditch just outside the town. We were just able to catch the last C. acaule in the Algonquin National Park.
 
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Seeing the huge stands of yellow is a cheerful experience in its own right and I've never visited late enough to catch the C. reginae which I know I'd love. Word has it they have a rose-like fragrance. All of these guys have scents. We're not going this year because of the conference in Europe that brought about this thread from me, but PM me if you ever want to trade tips about this spot or meet up--I WILL be going back in 2016 unless I get hit by a car or perish some other way!
 
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I've turned my attention to Gargano National Park in Italy for an orchid hunting trip instead. Any English speakers out there who have lodging and restaurants they'd like to recommend to make the experience less terrifying?
 

Linus_Cello

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I've turned my attention to Gargano National Park in Italy for an orchid hunting trip instead. Any English speakers out there who have lodging and restaurants they'd like to recommend to make the experience less terrifying?
Tom Mirenda of the Smithsonian did a presentation on orchids in Sicily:
http://ncos.us/ncos/newsletter_1114.pdf

Tom Mirenda, Orchid Collection Specialist
Telephone: (301) 238-1902
Email: mirendat@si.edu

During his presentation, he mentioned an expert on Sicilian orchids who lives in England. Maybe this British person has advice about Pugilia?
 

tonyw

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We have had a wonderful week in the Gargano in early April. The orchids were excellent as were lots more spring flowers.

We flew to Rome and drove down,easily in a day, mostly on motorway.

We stayed at Peschici in a hotel on the outskirts. A lot of people stay in Monte St. Angelo which is more touristy and has more places open.

Before Easter most places on the coast are closed but there are enough hotels and restaurants open and they can easily be found.

A car is really essential for getting about but driving is easy with little traffic.

One thing to be aware of is that although it is Southern Italy if the north wind is blowing it is numbingly cold and a good coat is essential.

It is in no way terrifying,just wonderful

if I can be of any help then contact me direct.
 
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A belated thanks for the very helpful replies. Tonyw, I will likely shoot you a PM after I do a bit more homework. I'm especially glad to know the timing will be good for the plants.
 

Kawarthapine

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There is a great orchid festival every spring on the Bruce Peninsula, in central Ontario.

Ontario has roughly 60 species of which over half can be found found on the Bruce.

The web site for those who are interested is:

http://www.orchidfest.ca/

Well worth attending if the timing is right.
 

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