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The red helleborine found in light, dry forest, particularly among beech trees, pines and

spruces. grows to an altitude of 2,600 m,

especially on calcareous soils with a pH

between 5.9–8.2. Flower colour is an indicator

of the soil qualities, with darker blooms on

more calcareous ground.

The red helleborine is found throughout most of Europe, east to the Urals and as far as 60 degrees north. It is however rare in Britain, the Low Countries and western France.

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​The Cephalanthera rubra, known as red helleborine, is an orchid found in Europe, North Africa and southwest Asia. Although reasonably common in parts of its range, this Cephalanthera has always been one of the rarest orchids in Britain.

Red Helleborine

Cephalanthera rubra is thought to be mainly pollinated by flies, although often self-pollination is triggered by rainfall. Pollination may also be carried out by Chelostoma bee. As the flowers are frequently visited by flies, crab spiders have been observed hunting in them.

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