Around Our Grounds: Orchids, Monarchs, and More

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Written by Francis Coates

On August 13, 2019

Orchid Sightings Last summer during August, more than 30 orchids were seen along the edges of the fairways that are now part of the Disc Golf Course in Country Club Park.

Orchids were found near Disc Golf Holes 1, 3, 10, 15 and 18, around groups of trees on the site of the proposed multipurpose field, and along Country Club Road between the cross walks. The orchids were all Slender Ladies Tresses (Spiranthes lacera). The graceful spirals of up to 40 tiny flowers on slender spikes ranged from 6 to 18 inches tall. 

Will they flower this August?

Monarch Outings – Have you ever found a Monarch butterfly egg or caterpillar? Do you know where to look? Two opportunities to look for Monarch eggs and caterpillars are being offered in August by one of Lake Holiday’s Monarch experts, Becky Barker. She will lead outings on Sunday, August 18, in the afternoon, and Saturday, August 24, in the morning.  If you are interested, contact Becky by email at barker_becky@hotmail.com. And check the earlier article here: Identifying and Preserving Monarchs & Milkweed.

Quarantine in Effect Spotted Lanternflies were first seen in Winchester City in January 2018. They have now spread to Frederick County. Have you seen any?

Winged adults, about one inch long, started to appear around the end of July and will continue through October. Eggs are laid in groups starting in September.  Undisturbed eggs will hatch in the spring. Eggs are often laid at the base of Tree of Heaven (Ailanthus altissima), which is an invasive tree that is found in Lake Holiday. There is a Spotted Lanternfly Quarantine in effect for all areas of Frederick County. The purpose of the quarantine is to slow the invasive insect’s spread.

For more information contact our local extension office: https://ext.vt.edu/agriculture/commercial-horticulture/spotted-lanternfly.htmlGetting photos or specimen flies and giving the information to local extension officials can help track the spread of the troublesome Spotted Lanternfly.

~by Frances Coates

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