Orchid being fertilised by wasp!

By Heather Miles

This series of photographs, taken by the late Noel Rosten, shows the process by which the orchid, Cryptostylis erecta, is fertilised by the wasp, Lissopimpla excelsa.

The male wasp hatches about a week before the female wasp. The orchid emits an odour imitating that of the female wasp and the male wasp copulates with the flower, in the process gathering pollen to be taken to the next orchid.

This was the topic of a short talk given by Noel at the Australian Plants Society-North Shore Group meeting on February 9th, 2018.

Thanks to Rae Rosten for sharing them with us.