White Egret Orchids card
This most beautiful of orchids grows wild on grassy wetlands in Japan, Korea and parts of China. It used to be common in the lowland regions but because this habitat has gradually been taken over by agriculture and urbanisation the plant is now mostly restricted to wild upland areas unsuitable for crops and habitation. Luckily specialist find this plant easy to propagate.
The Japanese name is sagisou meaning “Egret Grass“. Perhaps this is a better description because the flowers are displayed on the ends of long straight grass like spikes. Each pure white flower has two large lobes that is fringed to appear to be the feathered the wings of an egret, between the wings is a single long petal pointing downwards which looks like the neck of the bird. When the plant shoots up a cluster of spikes, and they bloom together, the flowers look like a flock of flying white egrets descending to land in a rice field.
In recent years the plant has been developed and propagated. into many new varieties and are at last being exported.