(last page)Cephalanthera, valkut

Cephalanthera is a smallish genus with about 20 species. It is mainly Eurasian genus, but some plants can also be seen in Africa. One Arerican orchid without any chlorophyll is sometimes named as Cephalanthera

Mainly these are handsome plants, althiught there are few exeptions. Flowers are pale or dark red, pure or dirty white or yellow. There are no yelllow-flowered species in Europe. Cephalantheras have leafy stem, in Finnish species they are long and guite narrow, plicate. In few Mediterranean species they are no larges than small scales. Flowers are primitive, and lip does not look so much different from other petals. Actually these plants look guite a lot like some plants from Liliaceae-family, and plants are guite showy. The flowers don´t open widely, and European species C. damasonianum looks like it would never open its flowers, they open so little. I think that Finnish species are the most beautyful of all Cephalantheras. 

All Cephalantheras grow in woods in Finland. They can be found from all kinds of woods, with Picea, Pinus or various leafy trees. 

1: longifolia- miekkavalkku 
2: rubra - punavalkku 

 These pages has been made and updated by Matti Niissalo, sophronitis@yahoo.com