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Overview

Brief Summary

Marsh helleborine is a rare plant with beautiful flowers and legally protected. The plant needs an alkaline, nutrient-poor and wet environment and grows preferably in sunny places. These orchids are mostly found in marshy dune slacks, where they blossom in massive numbers. The Dutch name 'moeraswespenorchis' (marsh wasp orchid) refers to the habitat where it grows and one of the major insects that pollinate the flowers. Marsh helleborine is found on the Wadden Islands, in the North Holland dunes and in the delta region. It is often found together with another rare orchid species, the fen orchid.
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Distribution

Localities documented in Tropicos sources

Epipactis palustris (L.) Crantz:
Russian Federation (Asia)
China (Asia)

Note: This information is based on publications available through Tropicos and may not represent the entire distribution. Tropicos does not categorize distributions as native or non-native.
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Ecology

Associations

Associations in Sarmatic Mixed Forests

The Sarmatic mixed forests ecoregion stretches from northwestern Europe to the Ural Mountains in Russia and represents one of the broadest longitudinal expanse of any ecoregion of the Earth. Dominant canopy species include Scots pine and Norway spruce (Picea abies) intermixed with some broadleaf species such as (Quercus robur). There are a number of shrubs, wildflowers, grasses and mosses that inhabit the mid-tier and forest floor. Common low-growing shrubs include Bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus) and Heather (Calluna vulgaris).

Example wildflowers or forbs seen in the forest understory in association with Marsh Helleborine (Epipactis palustris) are: Red Silene dioica), Sand Catchfly (Silene conica), White Silene latifolia), Common Spotted Orchid (Dactylorhiza fuchsii) and Field Scabious (Knautia arvensis). In some fens within forest clearings the Marsh thistle (Cirsium palustre) is found.

Other associates in the Sarmatic forests include some widespread ferns seen on forest floors such as Western Brackenfern (Pteridium aquilinum) and Mountain Bladderfern (Cystopteris montana). Common mosses found in the more mesic soils are Broom Forkmoss (Dicranum scoparium), Stairstep Moss (Hylocomium splendens), Red-stemmed Feathermoss (Pleurozium schreberi), Ostrich Plume (Ptilium crista-castrensis) and Common Hair Moss (Polytrichum commune).
  • C.Michael Hogan. 2011. "Sarmatic mixed forests". Topic ed. Sidney Draggan. Ed.-in-chief Cutler J.Cleveland. Encyclopedia of Earth. Environmental Information Coalition, National Council for Science and the Environment http://www.eoearth.org/article/Sarmatic_mixed_forests
  • U.G.Bolub Bohn and C. Hettwer. 2000. Reduced general map of the natural vegetation of Europe. 1:10,000,000. Bonn-Bad Godesberg, Bonn.
  • World Wildlife Fund. 2001. Sarmatic mixed forests. (PA0436).
  • C.Michael Hogan. 2009. Marsh Thistle: Cirsium palustre. GlobalTwitcher.com, ed. N.Strömberg.
  • H.Sjors. 1999. Swedish plant geography: The background: Geology, climate and zonation. Acta Phytogeogr. Suec. Uppsala: Opulus press, 84:5-14.
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Plant / pollenated
worker of Apis mellifera pollenates or fertilises flower of Epipactis palustris

Plant / pollenated
Insecta pollenates or fertilises flower of Epipactis palustris

Foodplant / parasite
aecium of Melampsora epitea parasitises Epipactis palustris

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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Barcode data: Epipactis palustris

The following is a representative barcode sequence, the centroid of all available sequences for this species.


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Statistics of barcoding coverage: Epipactis palustris

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 5
Specimens with Barcodes: 9
Species With Barcodes: 1
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Wikipedia

Epipactis palustris

Flower

Epipactis palustris (Marsh Helleborine) is an orchid.

Epipactis palustris is native to Europe, Turkey, north Iraq, the Caucasus, north Iran, West and East Siberia and Central Asia.[1] (Codes) [2]

An example occurrence of this species is in the Sarmatic mixed forests ecoregion. (Hogan. 2011)

References[edit]

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