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The present book is a contribution toward a more complete understanding of the biology and ecology of terrestrial orchids in the north temperate zone. It results from a conference of specialists in the field of orchid biology and ecology in České Budějovice (Czech Republic) held from May 6-13th, 2001. The meeting was a follow-up to a similar gathering that was held in The Netherlands in 1990. The emphasis of the workshop in The Netherlands was on the population ecology of terrestrial orchids, especially long-term demographic studies. Other topics considered in the 1991 volume were patterns and causes of variation in flowering and the use of models to project populations trends. The conference in the Czech Republic contained most of the themes presented at the 1990 conference but expanded into areas that had previously received little attention. In particular, the 2001 conference included papers on orchid mycorrhiza, especially the role of mycorrhiza on the underground phase (i.e. protocorms and seedlings) of orchids. Other topics at the České Budějovice meeting were seed germination and the effects of site management on the population fitness.