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Happy (calendar) Autumn!

190901 autumn lady's-tresses (1)

Today’s plant couldn’t be more appropriate – these are Autumn lady’s-tresses (Spiranthes spiralis). True to their name, they usually appear when the weather turns more autumnal, and their twirling spiral form apparently reminded their original namer of the ringlets once popular in women’s hairstyles.

Though they like to grow in very short turf, Autumn lady’s-tresses are themselves quite small and, surrounded as these were by other wildflowers, especially the superficially similar Eyebright, they weren’t easy to spot.

Luckily for me, when I was having an early wander around Cosmeston this morning, I bumped into a friend of a friend, who is extremely knowledgeable about the local flora, and he very kindly showed me where these gorgeous little orchids were growing.

190901 autumn ladies tresses (6)