© Rick Tallas

Flower Focus Group

What to know

The Flower Focus Group meets the third Wednesday of the month from September to May in the Marjory Wood Gallery of the Kerry Wood Nature Center between 10:00 a.m. and noon.

Check event listing for itineraries. Sessions in the spring and fall months may involve field trips so, dress for the weather.

Please contact Don Wales at 403-343-2937 or email Don at don@hexapod.ca for more information.

Native Plant Garden

RDRN has funded a native plant garden at the Kerry Wood Nature Centre. It is located to the south of the main doors. RDRN is indebted to the Red Deer Garden Club for their tireless work in maintaining the garden. To see plants located in the garden and information about them, please click the button below.

Common Alberta Trees

Several years ago, RDRN planted representative specimens of common Alberta trees at the Kerry Wood Nature Centre.

Seed Packet Trials at Ellis Bird Farm

Ever wonder about all those flower seed packages for sale? We did and so, RDRN in cooperation with Ellis Bird Farm bought 10 different packages. We planted them to see what would grow. You may be surprised!

Interesting Plant Sightings

Fairy Slipper (Calypso bulbosa)

This is the normal form of the Fairy Slipper (Calypso bulbosa). This is relatively common in west Central Alberta. Photo Copyright 2014 W. Heinsen.

Calypso Orchid, Fairy Slipper (Calypso bulbosa)

Calypso Orchid, Fairy Slipper (Calypso bulbosa): This variety was found at Siffleur Falls in 2005. Copyright 2003 W. Heinsen.

Fairy slipper (Calypso bulbosa)

This was also found at Siffleur Falls. Fairy slipper (Calypso bulbosa). Copyright 2011 W. Heinsen.

Fairy slipper (Calypso bulbosa)

Location unknown. Fairy slipper (Calypso bulbosa). Copyright 2011 W. Heinsen.

Sparrow’s egg Lady’s Slipper (Cypripedium passerinum)

The double-flowered Sparrow’s egg Lady’s Slipper (Cypripedium passerinum) and a second specimen were found on opposite sides of a small stream and separated by several 100 metres.

Round-leafed Orchids (Orchis rotundifolia)

These Small Round-leafed Orchids (Orchis rotundifolia) were found in the Butcher Creek Natural Area. 2012 is a good year for these blooms in the Natural Area – there are thousands of them. On closer examination, several variations in the typical colour scheme were discovered. On this one, note the border on the lip of the petal.

Small Round-leafed Orchids (Orchis rotundifolia)

This one shows some “splotchy” areas on the petals. These makings seemed to be random and scattered. Plants with the variations could have many marked petals, or only one. Plants in the same clusters may or may not show variations.

Small Round-leaved Orchid (Amerorchis rotundifolia)

The Small Round-leaf Orchis lives in wet forests where the soil is cold. Depending on location, it blooms from May to August. It can grow up to 25 cm tall, but in Central Alberta is usually about 15 cm. It produces one, nearly round, basal leaf. The flowers are in a raceme, loose and showy. They are white with two broad purplish stripes, not spots, on the lip. (The spotted one is the common version of the plant.) The flowers are small, about 12 – 15 mm long so it takes a bit of hunting to locate it. Once you find one, you will probably see that there are many more present. Near Red Deer, the common form can be found at Butcher Creek Natural Area, Braithwaite Natural Area, and in boggy areas along the Red Deer River. Farther afield, there are reliable patches near Nordegg on Shunda Creek, at Fish Lake Campground (south end of the “A” loop), and at Dry Haven Creek and many other places.

Small Round-leaved Orchid (Amerorchis rotundifolia var. lineata)

On July 2, 2011, members of RDRN and others, visited a site in Banff National Park to see the rare striped variety of Small Round-leaved Orchid (Amerorchis rotundifolia var. lineata). This is only the third location known to RDRN in North America. The others being in Cypress Hills Provincial Park, Alberta and Sleeping Giant Provincial Park, Ontario. There may be other locations yet to be reported. Anyone knowing of another location is asked to contact RDRN. (We are hearing that there may be a location near Edmonton and one in Yukon. If anyone knows more about either of these, we would be happy to hear from you.)