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EARLY SPIDER ORCHID Ophrys sphegodes (Orchidaceae) Height to 35cm. Perennial of dry grassland, on calcareous soils. In grazed areas, the plant is often rather short. FLOWERS comprise green sepals and yellowish green upper petals; the lower lip is 12mm across, expanded, furry and maroon-brown, variably marked with a metallic blue H-shaped mark. Borne in spikes (Apr-May). FRUITS are egg-shaped. LEAVES are green and seen mainly as a basal rosette. STATUS-Local, in S England only.
- © PAUL STERRY/Nature Photographers
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- Contained in galleries