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Costa Rica National Flower La Guaria Morada

"flower of Costa Rica "guaria morada" ~ orchid" -- for the nature jacket!

dragon's mouth orchid, Encyclia cordigera var. rosea

Encyclia cordigera 'Dragon Mouth' These orchids aren't fire-breathing dragons, but they are hot! Especially since they are so easy to grow and so pretty to behold—the flowers can last for up to three months, making them a favorite among orchid lovers.

We dropped by Grayson Highlands State Park in southwestern Virginia in hopes of finding Malaxis unifolia in bloom.  This is a very small native orchid with tiny flowers, so it is easily overlooked (the entire flower head at this stage of flowring was about as wide as a quarter).  After several minutes of searching in what looked like promising habitat we located four orchids that were just beginning to bloom.  This is a dorsal view of the developing flowers.

A beautiful inflorescence [in dorsal-view] of the Green Adder's-mouth Orchid - Malaxis unifolia - in situ in Grayson Highlands State Park in southwestern Virginia; by Jim Petranka