Purple beard orchid
This unusual deciduous terrestrial orchid grows in open forest and is rarely seen. This genus has the common name bearded orchid due to the resemblance to a bearded man caused by the two ‘eyes’ at the base of the column and the prominent ‘bearded’ labellum.
It has a fleshy dark green leaf to 35 cm by 8 mm. The flower stem grows to about 40 cm with up to about 9 flowers about 30 mm across. The flowers are very distinctive with the labellum covered in purple and cream hairs.
This species can be distinguished from other Calochilus by the dark purple glands at the base of the labellum and the prominent ridge connecting the ‘eye’ glands at the base of the column.