Even if orchids can globally colonize diverse environments, each species thrives in its own preferred conditions. The following table indicates for each species, habitat, and by the way of specific colour-codes, the elevation, and the soil conditions in which orchid species are the most frequently found. These ecological data may facilitate the search for peculiar species and also may give indications for identification.

The table also shows that some orchid species are very tolerant. Listera ovata can even be considered as a tolerance champion as this species can be found either in the shade or in sunny place and in all types of soils from sea level to more than 2000m! Orchis mascula and Neotinea ustulata are also highly tolerant.

However some species take up more narrow niches as, for example, Hammarbya paludosa restricted to acidic peat bog or also Chamorchis alpina only found at high altitude on alkaline substrate.




     
ELEVATION
 
LIGHT
 
SOIL HUMIDITY
 
SOIL ACIDITY
SPECIES
HABITAT
Anacamptis champagneuxii Grassland, maquis, garrigue, open woods                    
Anacamptis collina Grassland, garrigue, clearings                    
Anacamptis coriophora Damp meadow, swampy meadows, seepage                    
Anacamptis coriophora subsp. fragrans Dry grassland, scrubs, open woods, garrigue, pasture                    
Anacamptis coriophora subsp. martrinii Swampy meadows, seepage                    
Anacamptis laxiflora Marsh, meadow, brook sides, seepage                    
Anacamptis longicornu Grassland, maquis, garrigue, open woods                    
Anacamptis morio Grassland, meadow, wood margins, open woods                    
Anacamptis morio subsp. picta Grassland, maquis, wood margins, open woods                    
Anacamptis palustris Dune, swampy meadows, peat bog                    
Anacamptis papilionacea Grassland, garrigue, open woods, pine woods                    
Anacamptis papilionacea subsp. expansa Grassland, garrigue, open woods, pine woods                    
Anacamptis pyramidalis Grassland, garrigue, open woods                    
Anacamptis pyramidalis subsp. tanayensis Mountain pasture                    
Cephalanthera damasonium Forest, beech woods, pine woods                    
Cephalanthera longifolia Grassland, wood margins, clearings, open undergrowth                    
Cephalanthera rubra Scrubs, forest with pubescent oaks or beeches                    
     
ELEVATION
 
LIGHT
 
SOIL HUMIDITY
 
SOIL ACIDITY
SPECIES
HABITAT
Chamorchis alpina Alpine grassland, with mountain avens (Dryas octopetala) and edelweiss (Leontopodium alpinum)                    
Coeloglossum viride Poor grassland, alpine meadows, open woods, clearings, wood margins                    
Corallorrhiza trifida Marsh and mountain woods, beech woods, conifers                    
Cypripedium calceolus Scrubs, woods, beech woods, fir trees, wood margins, with bearberries (Arctostaphyllos uva-ursi)                    
Dactylorhiza alpestris Damp meadow, swampy meadows, seepage                    
Dactylorhiza angustata Peat bog, marsh, seepage                    
Dactylorhiza brennensis Damp meadow, marsh                    
Dactylorhiza cruenta Damp meadow, swampy meadows, seepage                    
Dactylorhiza elata Meadow, marsh, seepage                    
Dactylorhiza fuchsii Grassland, embankment, open woods, marsh, wood margins                    
Dactylorhiza fuchsii subsp. psychrophila Meadow, marsh, seepage                    
Dactylorhiza incarnata Damp meadow, swampy meadows, peat bog                    
Dactylorhiza incarnata subsp. pulchella Damp meadow, swampy meadows, peat bog                    
Dactylorhiza insularis Grassland, meadow, open woods, pine woods                    
Dactylorhiza lapponica Meadow, marsh, seepage                    
Dactylorhiza maculata Heath moors, swampy meadows, open woods                    
Dactylorhiza maculata subsp. elodes Peat bog, bog with sphagnum moss                    
Dactylorhiza maculata subsp. ericetorum Heath moors, peat bog, marsh                    
     
ELEVATION
 
LIGHT
 
SOIL HUMIDITY
 
SOIL ACIDITY
SPECIES
HABITAT
Dactylorhiza majalis Damp meadow, swampy meadows, seepage                    
Dactylorhiza occitanica Meadow, marsh, seepage                    
Dactylorhiza ochroleuca Marsh, reed-bed, peat bog                    
Dactylorhiza parvimajalis Damp meadow, swampy meadows, brook sides, seepage                    
Dactylorhiza praetermissa Dune, damp meadow, marsh, reed-bed                    
Dactylorhiza saccifera Wet woods, marsh, seepage                    
Dactylorhiza sambucina Grassland, meadow, open woods                    
Dactylorhiza savogiensis Swampy meadows, pasture, peat bog and seepage                    
Dactylorhiza sphagnicola Peat bog, bog with sphagnum moss                    
Dactylorhiza traunsteineri Swampy meadows, peat bog                    
Dactylorhiza wirtgenii Peat bog, marsh                    
Epipactis atrorubens Grassland, dune, wood margins, open woods                    
Epipactis distans Grassland, wood margins, scree, pine woods                    
Epipactis fageticola Riparian forest, beech woods, poplar woods                    
Epipactis fibri Riparian forest, alluvial valley, rhône riverside, poplar woods                    
Epipactis helleborine Wood margins, hardwood forest, grove                    
Epipactis helleborine subsp. minor Beech woods, pine woods                    
     
ELEVATION
 
LIGHT
 
SOIL HUMIDITY
 
SOIL ACIDITY
SPECIES
HABITAT
Epipactis kleinii Wood margins, pine woods, oak woods                    
Epipactis leptochila Undergrowth, beech woods, oak woods                    
Epipactis microphylla Woods, beech woods, hornbeam woods, oak woods                    
Epipactis muelleri Grassland, open oak woods, scrubs, moor, wood margins                    
Epipactis neerlandica Coast area, dune, with willow (Salix repens), pine woods, open woods                    
Epipactis palustris Marsh, peat bog, reed-bed, dune and damp moor, seepage                    
Epipactis phyllanthes Dune, scrubs, oak wood, beech woods, pine woods                    
Epipactis placentina Wood margins, beech woods, ash-tree woods, pine woods                    
Epipactis provincialis Oak wood, garigue                    
Epipactis purpurata Undergrowth, beech woods, hornbeam woods, conifer                    
Epipactis rhodanensis Riparian forest, poplar woods, willow grove, alder woods, ash-tree woods, pine woods                    
Epipactis tremolsii Grassland, garrigue, wood margins, scrubs, pine woods                    
Epipogium aphyllum Moss, beech woods, conifers                    
Gennaria diphylla Scrubs, garrigue, pine woods                    
Goodyera repens Moss, coniferous woods                    
Gymnadenia austriaca Grassland, mountain pasture                    
Gymnadenia cenisia Grassland, mountain pasture                    
     
ELEVATION
 
LIGHT
 
SOIL HUMIDITY
 
SOIL ACIDITY
SPECIES
HABITAT
Gymnadenia conopsea Grassland, seepage, swampy meadows                    
Gymnadenia corneliana Alpine grassland, with mountain avens (Dryas octopetala) and edelweiss (Leontopodium alpinum)                    
Gymnadenia gabasiana Grassland, mountain pasture, with gymnadenia austriaca                    
Gymnadenia odoratissima Grassland, seepage, swampy meadows                    
Gymnadenia pyrenaica Grassland, seepage, swampy meadows                    
Gymnadenia rhellicani Grassland, mountain pasture                    
Hammarbya paludosa Marsh, peat bog, sphagnum moss                    
Herminium monorchis Dune, grassland, damp meadow                    
Himantoglossum hircinum Grassland, fallows, wood margins, open woods                    
Himantoglossum robertianum Grassland, open woods, garrigue, thicket, scrubs                    
Limodorum abortivum Clearings, open and dry wood margins, maquis,                    
Limodorum trabutianum Clearings, open and dry wood margins, maquis,                    
Liparis loeselii Marsh, damp hollow in sand dunes                    
Listera cordata Clearings or coniferous undergrowth on moss with blueberries (Vaccinium myrtillus)                    
Listera ovata Roadsides, hardwood forest, meadow                    
Neotinea conica Grassland, garrigue, maquis, open woods                    
Neotinea corsica Grassland, maquis                    
     
ELEVATION
 
LIGHT
 
SOIL HUMIDITY
 
SOIL ACIDITY
SPECIES
HABITAT
Neotinea lactea Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Neotinea maculata Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, pine woods                    
Neotinea tridentata Grassland, embankment, wood margins, open woods, mountain pasture, with junipers                    
Neotinea ustulata Grassland, meadow, mountain pasture, open woods                    
Neotinea ustulata subsp. aestivalis Grassland, meadow, mountain pasture, open woods                    
Neottia nidus-avis Undergrowth, beech woods, oak wood, conifer                    
Ophrys aegirtica Grassland, garigue                    
Ophrys annae Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys apifera Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys aprilia Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys arachnitiformis Grassland, garrigue, scrubs                    
Ophrys araneola Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods, roadsides                    
Ophrys argensonensis Grassland, scrubs                    
Ophrys aurelia Grassland, meadow, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys aveyronensis Grassland, meadow, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys aymoninii Grassland, scrubs, open woods                    
     
ELEVATION
 
LIGHT
 
SOIL HUMIDITY
 
SOIL ACIDITY
SPECIES
HABITAT
Ophrys bilunulata Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, pine woods                    
Ophrys bombyliflora Grassland, meadow, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys catalaunica Grassland, meadow, garigue                    
Ophrys conradiae Grassland, embankment, garrigue, scrubs, open woods, wood margins                    
Ophrys corbariensis Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys corsica Garrigue, maquis, scrubs                    
Ophrys delforgei Grassland, garrigue, pine woods, with rosemary                    
Ophrys drumana Grassland, clearings, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys elatior Grassland, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys eleonorae Scrubs, maquis, garrigue, olive grove, pine woods                    
Ophrys fuciflora Grassland, fallows, garrigue, maquis, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys fuciflora subsp. demangei Grassland, fallows, garrigue, maquis, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys funerea Garrigue, maquis, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys gresivaudanica Grassland, embankment, scrubs, wood margins                    
Ophrys incubacea Grassland, meadow, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys insectifera Embankment, woods, thicket                    
Ophrys lupercalis Garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys lutea Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
     
ELEVATION
 
LIGHT
 
SOIL HUMIDITY
 
SOIL ACIDITY
SPECIES
HABITAT
Ophrys magniflora Grassland, meadow, garigue                    
Ophrys majellensis Grassland, scrubs                    
Ophrys marmorata Garigue                    
Ophrys massiliensis Scree, thicket, pine woods                    
Ophrys morisii Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys neglecta Grassland, garrigue, scrubs                    
Ophrys occidentalis Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys panormitana Garrigue, scrubs, embankment                    
Ophrys passionis Grassland, meadow, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys peraiolae Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys philippi Grassland, embankment, garrigue, scrubs, open woods, wood margins                    
Ophrys picta Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys provincialis Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys santonica Grassland, embankment, garrigue, scrubs, open woods, wood margins                    
Ophrys scolopax Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys speculum Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
     
ELEVATION
 
LIGHT
 
SOIL HUMIDITY
 
SOIL ACIDITY
SPECIES
HABITAT
Ophrys sphegodes Grassland, meadow, open woods, clearings, scrubs, garigue                    
Ophrys splendida Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys sulcata Grassland, garrigue, meadow, open woods, maquis                    
Ophrys tenthredinifera Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys vasconica Grassland, garrigue, pine woods                    
Ophrys virescens Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Ophrys zonata Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Orchis anthropophora Garrigue, scrubs, wood margins, clearings                    
Orchis ichnusae Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Orchis langei Grassland, embankment, open woods                    
Orchis mascula Hardwood forest, thicket, wet pasture, embankment, meadow                    
Orchis militaris Grassland, meadow, scrubs, open woods, thicket                    
Orchis olbiensis Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Orchis ovalis Hardwood forest, thicket, wet pasture, embankment, meadow                    
Orchis pallens Pasture, mountain pasture, woods, copse                    
Orchis pauciflora Grassland, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Orchis provincialis Garrigue, grassland, open woods, thicket                    
Orchis purpurea Meadow, garrigue, embankment, woods, thicket, beech woods, oak wood, old vineyard                    
     
ELEVATION
 
LIGHT
 
SOIL HUMIDITY
 
SOIL ACIDITY
SPECIES
HABITAT
Orchis simia Grassland, garrigue, meadow, open woods, maquis                    
Orchis spitzelii Woods, grassland with bearberries (Arctostaphyllos uva-ursi)                    
Platanthera algeriensis Peat bog, swampy meadows                    
Platanthera bifolia Grassland, open woods, wood margins, marsh, damp meadow                    
Platanthera chlorantha Woods, damp meadow, thicket, marsh                    
Pseudorchis albida Grassland, damp meadow, open woods                    
Serapias cordigera Damp meadow, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Serapias lingua Grassland, damp meadow, maquis, open woods, pine woods                    
Serapias neglecta Garrigue, damp meadow, open woods                    
Serapias nurrica Grassland, garrigue, maquis                    
Serapias olbia Garrigue, damp meadow, dune                    
Serapias parviflora Damp meadow, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Serapias strictiflora Grassland,                    
Serapias vomeracea Damp meadow, garrigue, scrubs, open woods                    
Spiranthes aestivalis Dune, damp meadow, moor, peat bog                    
Spiranthes spiralis Short grassland, garigue                    
Traunsteinera globosa Grassland, meadow, mountain pasture                    




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