Nigritella nigra (L.) Rchb. f. - syn. Gymnadenia nigra (L.) Rchb.f. - Orchidaceae
Black Vanilla orchid, Schwarzes Kohlröschen, Schwarzes Männertreu, Bränderli
Endangered perennial, up to 15cm high, very rare, native to Europe, especially to the Alps, Norway and Sweden (province flower of Jämtland); leaves linear, grass-like; flowers black-purple (sometimes also pinkish, white or pale yellow), very fragrant.
The unique spicy floral scent strongly reminescent of vanilla and cocoa is especially based on 2-phenylethanol (42.5%), 2-phenylacetaldehyde (9.0%), vanillin (0.1%), benzyl isovalerate (0.2%), 2-phenylethyl isovalerate (0.1%), methyl nicotinate (1.0%), eugenol (0.1%), (E)-geranylacetone (1.3%), 2-phenylethyl formate [?], and methyl benzoate (0.5%).
[Scent of a vanishing flora, Roman Kaiser, 2011, 191 and 389]
The volatile fraction of the inflorescences of Nigritella nigra isolated by steam distillation (0.9% f.w.) contained mainly benzyl alcohol (28.9%) and 2-phenylethanol (10.4%). Other important constituents were phenylacetaldehyde (8.1%), heptanal (7.0%), isovaleric acid (3.2%), tricosane (4.7%), pentacosane (4.8%), and heptacosane (2.3%). Vanillin was present at 0.8%.
[Characterization of the volatile fraction of Nigritella nigra (L.) Rchb. F.(Orchidaceae), a rare species from the Central Alps., Tava, A., Cecotti, R., Confalonieri, M., Journal of Essential Oil Research, 24(1), 2012, 39-44] http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/10412905.2012.645644
Lindman, C.A.M., Bilder ur Nordens Flora, vol.2 t.407 (1922-1926)