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Calcareous prairies and fens. Some populations have been shown to benefit from burn management and brush clearing.
In fens with Circium muticum, Gentiana procura, Lobelia kalmii, Parnassia glauca, Potentilla fruticosa, Spiranthes cernua, Valeriana ciliata. In prairies a consistent associate is Zizia aurea.
NY and NJ to OH, ND, NE, and MO.
Perennial; stem to 40 cm bearing a few sheathing scales and 3-5 leaves. Leaf blades lanceolate to narrowly elliptic, often overlapping at the base, 8-15 cm, the uppermost smaller, erect, and subtending the flower. Lip white, petals lanceolate, often with one or more spiral twists.
Flowers late April to early June
Wetland indicator: Obligate
This is a pretty little orchid. I was searching for bog valerian at the edge of a fen and stumbled across this specimen. Can hybridize with yellow lady's slipper C. calceolus L.
Gleason, Henry A.
and A. Cronquist. 1991. Manual of Vascular Plants of Northeastern United States
and Adjacent Canada. Second Ed.
The New York Botanical Garden. Bronx, NY
Swink, F. and G.
Wilhelm. 1994. Plants of the Chicago Region.
Indiana Academy of Science. The Morton Arboretum. Lisle, Illinois.
Michael Hough © 2004