Coastal Sun Orchid - Thelymitra granitora
A stocky orchid to around 30 cm (12") in height, which are self-pollinating and will only open on sunny, warm, humid days. Although its botanical name refers to its preference for a granite habitat, it can also be encountered on and around flood plains, particularly at the base of trees. It is usually found in condensed colonies of up to a dozen plants on granite outcrops, or in ones and twos elsewhere.
It is an impressive looking orchid with a short thick stem and a large fleshy channelled (curved) leaf, giving rise to great expectations as to a spectacular flower, but alas it seldom blooms. The flowers are not unattractive when encountered, usually being to 3 cm (around 1") diameter and pale blue, with the brushes either side of the column being held high near the yellow column summit. Flowering period is short being only during September and October.