Romfilatelia, the specialized company in issuing and trading Romanian postage stamps, introduces into circulation the postage stamps issue Romanian Wild Orchids.Romfilatelia, the specialized company in issuing and trading Romanian postage stamps, introduces into circulation the postage stamps issue Romanian Wild Orchids.
The orchids, regularly associated with exotic vegetation present in tropical areas, are also present in areas with temperate climate.
In Romania, according to the specialty literature, there are 58 species.
The wild orchids in our country are land species, being present on lawns, sloughs wood sides and meadows. Most of the time they are not noticed in the wild vegetation of the biotopes to which they belong, because of the fact that, generally are small plants with flowers of a few millimeters. Nevertheless they are truly special from a botanical point of view. The seeds have such small dimensions (approximately 0,1mm) so that they can be perceived as dust grains. However, a capsule can contain hundreds of thousands of seeds, which are dispersed for entire hectares of land. They do not contain nutritive substances, thus, the germinated embryo will survive only if it finds a fungus in the land with which the species can form a symbiosis which will last their whole lives.
The plants blossom after many years of maturation, while any kind of disturbance of the environment conditions can destroy them. Tightly connected to the environment in which they live, the orchids are among the first plants affected by the habitat deterioration and by the daily anthropogenic pressures. For these reasons, the measures of protection are absolutely necessary and extremely urgent, if we want to maintain the national patrimony.
Flowers can be pollinated several times by the same insect, that the flower imitates in shape, also synthesizing the pheromone with which the insect attracts its mating partner.
Flowers have an axial symmetry, as the human being. The rhizome is also symmetrical, having the shape of 2 globular formations.
The Cephalanthera rubra orchid, illustrated on the stamp with the face value of RON 0.30, has been described by Carl von Linné in 1817 and then by L. C. M. Richard. Cephalanthera is a flower species with an outstanding delicacy and a suavity, which springs on the woodside among the already dry leaves, in the middle of June and till the end of July. Its spreading is so vast, almost covering the entire country, although the population is reduced to a few dozens of specimens in each of the recently re-confirmed locations.
The Epipactis palustris orchid is illustrated on the stamp with the face value of RON 1.20. The little puddle by its popular name, has been mentioned by Linné in 1769. However, we owe the full description to Heinrich Johann Nepomuk Edler von Crantz, an Austrian doctor and botanist, of Luxembourgian origin. It grows in muddy areas covered by tall grass and blossoms in July. Although the flower is relatively small in size, it is truly spectacular, on the label having a crystal white indent, as the collar of medieval knights. Recent observations have signaled it in the puddles from the areas of Cluj, Bihor, Braşov, Caraş-Severin and Harghita counties.
The Dactylorhiza maculata orchid is illustrated on the stamp with the face value of RON 1.60, being described by Linné in 1753 and then by the Hungarian botanist Soó Rezsö, born in Odorheiu Secuiesc. It is a species which is outspread almost on the entire country, especially in the alpine and sub-alpine areas. The variability of the species is so high that you can hardly establish the sub-species or the variety of plants found. Thus, from time to time, scientific disputes arise which have an international resonance. It blooms in June until the beginning of August.
The Anacamptis pyramidalis orchid illustrated on the stamp with the face value of RON 2.50, has been described for the first time by the Swedish botanist Carl von Linné in 1817, subsequently completed by the Frenchman Louis Claude Marie Richard. It is an orchid with a rich inflorescence, purple, burning like a torch on the mountain pastures, depending on the altitude, in June and July.
The Limodorum abortivum orchid, is illustrated on the stamp with the face value of RON 2.70, has been described by Linné in 1799 and subsequently by his countryman Olof Peter Swartz. This orchid´s spectacular features are rarely encountered to an autochthon species: some specimens reach a meter high, with dozens of purple flowers which can reach a 3 cm in diameter. Although it is signaled in the specialty literature in many locations across Romania, the last on-field confirmations refer only to the counties Caraş-Severin, Mehedinţi and Tulcea. The plants spring from the grass like candles, starting from June.
The Ophrys scolopax orchid is illustrated on the stamp with the face value of RON 6.00, has been described for the first time by the Spanish Botanist Antonio Jose Cavanilles, in 1793. The species is usually found in the Mediterranean and Sub-Mediterranean areas. In our country we can find it in the South-West, especially in the Natural Park “Iron Gates”, as a corniculated sub-species, a banatica variety. The spreading status is “very rare”.The petal of the flowers from the Ophrys species imitates the shape of insects which they attract in order to facilitate the pollination. Each species is ´specialized´ on its favorite insect, this mimesis reaching the point of secreting the pheromone of the respective insect. The plant blossoms in the second part of May.
On the “first day cover” it is illustrated the Anacamptis morio orchid.
The species has been described by Linné in 1753 as a Orchis morio. Due to the researches performed by a group of biologists from the Royal British Botanical Garden, made up of R.M. Bateman, Alec Pridgeon and M.W. Chase, in the domain of molecular philologenetics, the name which has lasted for more than 2 centuries, has been changed. Our orchis in the Carpathian Mountains have become a member of the Anacamptis family in 1997. It starts to bloom at the end of May until the month of July, depending on the altitude, on the mountain and sub-mountain fields. It is one of the most widespread orchids in our country. The colour of the flower can vary from white to purple – deep purple.
For an efficent promotion of the great philatelic event, World Philatelic Exhibition EFIRO 2008, the 6 postage stamps of the philatelic issue habe been printed in sheets with undetached labels with EFIRO 2008 logo on the right side column (one variant in Romanian and the other one in English). The postage stamps have an unperforated margin, common with the margin of the labels and marqued by 3 perforated spaces.
The postage stamps issue was performed with the help of Mr. Andrei Lenard, president of the Romanian Orchid Club and was endorsed by Mr. Rik Neirynck (Belgium), member of the „ Groupe de Spécialistes en Orchidées de l’UICN/CSE”and of the “European Orchid Committee” and of Mr. Adorian Ardelean, doctor in biology, coordinator of the myNature Project, researcher in the planktonNET Program, financed by the European Commission.
Issue date: 2007-03-23