The Many Definitions of Orchid Conservation
As with many terms, the words “orchid conservation” can be variously interpreted. To some, orchid conservation means saving the rainforest, donating funds to support habitat purchase in a distant land, rescuing plants from fallen trees, or performing volunteer service in a park or conservation area. To others, conservation equates with propagation of species to relieve collection pressure on vulnerable orchid populations. To still others, conservation encompasses the trade in orchids and the various documents needed to facilitate that trade. Orchid conservation can also begin at home in our collections, in learning how to take care of orchids. Conservation means caring about orchids in cultivation and in the wild, however and whenever the opportunity arises.
Our Native Orchids and their Legal ProtectionHow are our native orchids being protected? What about that plant being offered for sale? Where we stand.
Watch Your Step
What are the consequences when you step off a trail to look at a flower or take its picture? This article by Marilyn Light and Michael MacConaill is a study that measured the effect of human disturbance on a forest habitat during the flowering period of May-blooming large yellow lady’s-slippers (Cypripedium parviflorum var. pubescens).
Conserving Our Collections: Planning for a Future
If a crisis occurs, who will take care of the orchids? Have an action plan.
ONLY ONE – A Tragedy in Three Acts
What are the consequences of collecting one orchid plant?
The pollinator conservation resource center of the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation is a good place to access information. Simply peruse the map and click on your region to learn more about local initiatives and resources. Those of us involved in natural area projects might consider some of these approaches where orchid habitat management is concerned.
There are many useful publications at this site such as one suggesting food plants (including garden plants) for foraging pollinators. Most adult insect pollinators of our native orchids (including lady's slippers) need flowers other than orchids as nectar/pollen food sources. Larval food plants are also needed in some cases. In the spirit of an integrated approach to orchid conservation, please consider pollinator conservation.
- A Digital Flora of Newfoundland and Labrador Vascular Plants
- Orchids of Nova Scotia
- Native Orchids that Bloom in Nova Scotia in July
- New Brunswick Natural Resources - Orchids
- Native Orchid Conservation Inc, Winnipeg, Manitoba
- Orchids at Redberry lake, Saskatchewan
- The Orchid Species Preservation Foundation of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta
- Article - Wild Orchid Country - Alberta
- E-Flora BC (Orchids of British Columbia)
- The IUCN/SSC Orchid Specialist Group the leading international network for orchid conservation.
- The North American Native Orchid Journal