2019 – So it begins

23/03/2019

Well it had to start sooner than later.

What am I talking about?

The 2019 Western Australian Orchid Season of course. Well over here in Esperance it is starting, whilst in the deep dark South West corner of the state it appears to start earlier and finish when the next one has already started. Sounds confusing I know.

However,  it is today we are going to go on our first hunt of this season. First stop is our wonderful little Esperance Bird and Animal Park for a takeaway coffee, then on to Helms Arboretum (Mud Map SE35) which always proves fruitful. Well until today that is. 

Drove around and checked out some usual spots but only found some yet to flower White bunny orchids. The Leafless orchid and Hare orchid were elusive.

In bud
White bunny orchid

A little disappointed we leave and head a bit further north along the Esperance-Norseman Hwy to Fleming Grove Rd, where we have another site that may turn up some Hare orchids. Well so much for the Season starting. Nothing found here either. 

As we are picking up our little grandson this afternoon, we then head off to another site for one last search. We arrive at Rotary Lookout (Mud Map 34), park up, grab our picnic lunch and find a quiet spot on the granite to rest and eat lunch. 

Rested and fed, we now make our way down a small track towards the Water Authority tanks. It was along this track the Deb spies a 400mm high White bunny orchid in flower. I had walked right past it. Need to get my orchid hunting eyes into order as they must be rusty. Oh well can’t complain as our season has now officially started. The White bunny orchid (Eriochilus dilatatus subsp. dilatatus) flowers March to May is a large coastal range from Dirk Hartog Island to Israelite Bay. Within 2 mtrs on the other side of the track Deb spies another flowering plant that I also overlooked.

Well this is a better result, so with added enthusiasm we trudge onwards. We make our way back from the Water tanks to the walk track proper and slowly make our way around the rock. Stopping for the beautiful view before finding our way back near the start.  

No orchids but the views are to die for
Lovers Beach

Deb walks back to the Triton, while I push down the hill via more tracks in the vain hope of finding something. Nothing more found , however the season has now well and truly started.

Here’s to many fun filled, exciting adventures this year.

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