The first orchid to appear in early spring. Before being renamed recently it was called Barlia robertianum after the 19th century French botanist ‘Jean Baptiste Barla’. It is very sturdy, with shiny mid-green leaves and a densely packed flower stalk (25 cm).
Garrigues, grassy places, roadsides, scrub and open woodland.
Scented. The sepals are reddish violet, spreading; the central sepal curves forward to form a hood with the lateral petals. The lip (15-22mm long) divides into 3 splayed greenish or purple lobes with the central lobe divided in two, lighter in colour and with purple markings.
Elliptic oval leaf. Basal rosette leaves oval to long, wider in the middle, pointed, shiny and crunchy, 10-20 cm.
Capsule: with numerous seeds.