Hera’s Bee Orchid
This species of bee orchid is only found on the Greek island of Samos, and is named after the Greek goddess Hera, who was worshipped prominently on the island in antiquity. For those in the know, it is quite similar to Ophrys mammosa, except for the colouration: herae has an orange mouth and green ‘eyes’, whereas mammosa has black ‘eyes’ and a much more burgundy/purple overall colouration.
In the meadow of a small and ramshackle old overgrown olive grove, there were 10 species of orchid in flower, including many of the island’s stars.
South of Aghia Zoni, Eastern Samos, Greece
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