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Orchid Conservation

The Calvert County Natural Resources Division is partnering with the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center and the North American Orchid Conservation Center (NAOCC) to document orchid species found in Calvert County for the purpose of conserving native orchids found in the U.S. and Canada.

The Calvert Stewards volunteers will identify locations of orchids so that trained collectors can obtain photographs, viable seeds, fruits, leaf samples, and root samples with the aim of conserving North American orchid species. In special situations whole plants will be collected for voucher specimens to be stored in the Botany Department of the National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C.

NAOCC activities focus on establishing collections of seeds and orchid mycorrhizal fungi, developing protocols to propagate and restore all native orchid species and developing an interactive website to provide the public with a mechanism to identify and learn everything that is known about our native orchids. 

How You can Help

Become a Calvert Steward and learn how to:
    • Explore County-owned property to find and identify orchids
    • Map locations either accurately on paper maps or through online via iNaturalist.
    • Photograph the orchids at the different stages (leaf, flower, fruit).
    • Identify the habitat characteristics of each population.

    Download iNaturalist App

    Android app on Google Play   iPhone app in the Apple App Store

    Why Orchids Matter

    NAOCC Featured in Smithsonian Magazine:

    "Why the Conservation of Orchids Is No Simple Matter"

    "Orchid researchers are racing to store seeds from the threatened plants, but first, they must understand the conditions they need to grow." Read more of this article by freelance science writer Kimbra Cutlip...

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