Nature always in flux along the Blue Ridge Parkway

Many types of plants and animals once native to the region constantly disappear, victims of disease and invasive pests.

By Diane Tennant | The (Norfolk) Virginian-Pilot

On a Virginia mountainside, in a location too valuable to reveal, ecologist Chris Ulrey knelt next to Orchid No. 10.

"It's alive," he said. "It's got three fruits, three flowers."

He consulted his notebook. "Last year, it had one stem and a double flower."