Native Orchids! The season has begun!

We looooove native orchids! There are FIFTY TWO native orchids listed for New Hampshire, and most folks are not aware that there is even one.  Four of the fifty two species are considered ‘historical,’ which means they have not been recorded in at least twenty years.

Orchids are one of our main goals for the wildflower season…. thankfully May is here. The hunt has begun!

Corallorhiza trifida, early coral root

Corallorhiza trifida, or early coral-root 1, is EVERYWHERE right now! It’s exciting the first time you see it in the spring, at least…

We seem to see Corallorhiza trifida everywhere we turn, but it is on the ‘watch’ list for the state.  There are apparently not enough people walking through swamps in the spring!

Coeloglossum viride, long-bracted green orchid

Coeloglossum viride is the long-bracked green orchid. This is one of the most common naturally growing orchids in the world! It is present and accounted for in all of the New England states, too.

Coeloglossum viride, long-bracted green orchid

This is Keith’s quite incredible close up of on of the flowers of . We’ve been told it looks like an alien, or a warlock holding up a dagger…. whatever it is, it’s beautiful.

Cypripedium arietinum, ram's head orchid

Oooohhhhh. Cypripedium arietinum. The teeny tiny ram’s head lady’s slipper.  Ranked S1 in New Hampshire, if you know where these are DO NOT TELL ANYONE!

Cypripedium arietinum, ram's head orchid

Simply beautiful!  And kinda alien.

I don’t care if you’ve been hunting orchids for thirty years or thirty days – finding this tiny flower is going to make your month! At most 30 cm tall, and with flowers the size of my thumb, these orchids

Cypripedium parviflorum, greater yellow lady's slipper

Another rare lady’s slipper in New Hampshire is Cypripedium parviflorum, or the yellow lady’s-slipper.  We’ve found that people seem to THINK that they’ve seen yellow lady’s slipper…but chances are they have not. Sorry, folks.

While they used to be a relatively common sight in New Hampshire woods, they are extremely rare in all of the New England states now.

Goodbye, Winter!


Species GoBotany Links:
Corallorhiza trifida (early coral-root)
Coeloglossum viride (long-bracked green orchid)
Cypripedium arietinum (ram’s head lady’s-slipper)
Cypripedium parviflorum (yellow lady’s-slipper)

  1. Corallorhiza trifida, early coral-root


the dirty girl at dirty botany
Head dirty girl at!
Bug worshiper.
Slime mold fanatic.
Macrophotographer in training.

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