NORTH AMERICAN NATIVE ORCHID JOURNAL

Volume 9 2003

IN THIS ISSUE:
THE NATIVE ORCHIDS OF NEVADA ORCHID MEMORIES: THE PAINTINGS OF STAN FOLSOM UNDERSTANDING PLATANTHERA CHAPMANII

and more…………..

The North American Native Orchid Journal (ISSN 1084-7332) is an annual publication devoted to promoting interest and knowledge of the native orchids of North America. A limited number of the print version of each issue of the Journal are available upon request and electronic versions are available to all interested persons or institutions free of charge. The Journal welcomes article of any nature that deal with native or introduced orchids that are found growing wild in North America, primarily north of Mexico, although articles of general interest concerning Mexican species will welcome. Requests for either print or electronic copies should be sent to the editor: Paul Martin Brown, 10896 SW 90th Terrace, Ocala, FL 34481 or via email at naorchid@aol.com.

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NORTH AMERICAN NATIVE ORCHID JOURNAL
Volume 9 2003

CONTENTS NOTES FROM THE EDITOR 2 THE NATIVE ORCHIDS OF NEVADA Carole Siegel 3 ORCHID MEMORIES: THE PAINTINGS OF STAN FOLSOM Stan Folsom 22 NEW TAXA Paul Martin Brown 33 TWO NEW PLATANTHERA HYBRIDS Paul Martin Brown & Scott Stewart 36 UNDERSTANDING PLATANTHERA CHAPMANII Paul Martin Brown 36 ORCHID EXPLORATION FOR THE OLDER ENTHUSIAST The Slow Empiricist 40 NORTH AMERICAN NATIVE ORCHIDS BOOKS IN PROGRESS a news report 43 AN UNLIKELY PLACE TO FIND AN ORCHID TREASURE Carol Siegel 44

Unless otherwise credited, all drawings in this issue are by Stan Folsom The opinions expressed in the Journal are those of the authors. Scientific articles may be subject to peer review and popular articles will be examined for both accuracy and scientific content. Volume 9 pages 1-46; issued November 1, 2003. Copyright 2003 by the North American Native Orchid Alliance, Inc.
Cover: Spiranthes infernalis by Stan Folsom

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NOTES FROM THE EDITOR
This is the first annual issue in the new full-size format. It will make both the composition and assembly of the publication much easier. Because we are now an annual publication news of the past year is included. Conferences are now being organized by the Native Orchid Conference, Inc. Although in no way affiliated with the North American Native Orchid Alliance, these conferences are supported by the Alliance and all members/readers are encouraged to support them. The Native Orchid Conference also maintains a discussion group via email. For more information about their conferences and the email group see their website at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/nativeorchidconference/.

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THE NATIVE ORCHIDS OF NEVADA
Carol Siegel

Pity poor Hawaii… Contrary to its lush image as the Orchid Capital of the world, Hawaii has only three native orchids. Nevada, on the other hand, with its sizzling, dry deserts and freezing, snowy mountains, the last place associated with orchids, boasts no fewer than TWELVE native orchids, two of which occur in two distinct varieties. Stand aside, Hawaii, as we strut our stuff. It’s not easy to be an orchid in Nevada, yet our resilient and resourceful native orchids have learned to make a living in any little microclimate that boasts a little water and a little shade. Professor Wes Niles, curator of the Herbarium at UNLV, relates that under a dripping fountain outside the Chemistry Building, clumps of Epipactis gigantea started to grow, its seeds carried on the wind. In the drainage of a university swimming pool, additional stands grew and flowered just a couple of miles from the Strip. In the steaming desert of Las Vegas in Clark County, where temperatures can range from nine degrees to one hundred and nineteen degrees, three orchids are found: Epipactis gigantea in many places in Red Rock Recreational Area and elsewhere, Platanthera dilatata var. leucostachys in Kyle Canyon, and our common species Platanthera sparsiflora, in several locations in the Spring Mountains including Kyle and Lee Canyons. In Southern Nevada, including Clark, Nye and Lincoln counties, these and an additional four native orchids are found, Corallorhiza maculata, Spiranthes diluvialis, Spiranthes infernalis, and Spiranthes romanzoffiana, an amazing seven native orchids. In all, Nevada has these seven, and also Corallorhiza striata, Listera cordata, Spiranthes porrifolia, Piperia unalascensis, and the variety Platanthera dilatata var. albiflora, and Platanthera stricta, twelve in all. All our orchids are “terrestrial”, that is, they grow in the ground rather than clinging to the bark of a tree.

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An orchid was considered to be in Nevada if it was listed in herbariums (dried plant and information repositories) at UNLV and UNR or if it was listed as being an orchid from Nevada in the Flora Of North America Volume 26 2002, Luer’s Native Orchids Of The United States And Canada, Correll’s Native Orchids Of North America, and Brown & Folsom The Wild Orchids Of North America, North Of Mexico. There may be other orchids in other counties, but we thought that this was a reliable start to cataloguing the orchids of Nevada. Leafless, flowers heavily-spotted, devoid of green, this odd orchid gets its nourishment solely by being parasitic on its fungus hosts. This is one of those orchids that do not look like most people’s idea of an orchid. Known as the spotted coral root, its fungus-infected roots have a knobby appearance like pieces of branched coral, and its three-lobed white lip, and often its sepals, petals and column, are dotted with reddish to purplish spots. It mooches off other living things its whole life. It is known as “mycotrophic plant” because it relies on a special relationship with mycorrhizal fungus for its food. All orchids start their lives dependent on fungus for food because orchid seeds have no endosperm or food tissue for their growing embryos. The little seed must land on the fungus that serves as its nanny providing food. As most orchids grow, they develop leaves and become self-supporting. Corallorhiza maculata, however, is like a teen-ager who never leaves home. It continues to feed off its fungus for food throughout its whole life. Without photosynthesis, it has no need for leaves or chlorophyll, and the leaves are reduced to tiny sheaths on the flower stem. The plants are devoid of green and exhibit, instead, gay and attractive shades of brown, red and yellow. The strangelyshaped plants are just rhizome, stem and flowers, and appear above the ground to bloom. The plant grows usually in dry, open forest between 6900 and 10,000 feet in the decaying leaf litter although they tolerate some moist environments, too. Because of their delicate relationship with their fungus, transplanting them from the wild is out of the question, even if it were legal. This orchid is a favorite in folk medicine, used to break fevers by causing sweating. The Paiute and Shoshone Indians of Nevada made a tea to build up the blood in pneumonia sufferers.

CORALLORHIZA MACULATA

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CORALLORHIZA STRIATA var. STRIATA and var. VREELANDII
Corallorhiza striata, with its riot of stripes, is easy to tell from all other coralroots. About 16 inches tall, C. striata bears more than 45 heavily-striped flowers on leafless stems, each flower little more than ½ inch across. Like all coralroots, it never produces its own food. A parasitic wasp pollinates this most striking and largest-flowered coralroot. Different color forms of Corallorhiza striata have been given forma names. In Nevada, the varieties vreelandii and striata have been noted by the Flora Of North America. Variety striata is larger, brown to reddish-brown with sepals and petals that have three to five reddish-tobrown veins and lips over 7 mm. Variety vreelandii, with a light tan to yellowish base color and dull-brown stripes, is slightly smaller and less bright than var. striata. Blooming season is from May to July, and individual plants do not bloom every year. In a study lasting 29 years on a single colony, the number of blooming plants varied from 0-155. Four years, there were NO plants at all.

EPIPACTIS GIGANTEA
In May of 2000, over fifty of our orchid-loving club adventurers hiked into the hills of Red Springs in the Red Rock Recreation Area to see our native orchid, Epipactis gigantea, with Dr. Patrick Leary, Chairman of Biology at CCSN. As we hung over the side of the cliff, we had the thrill of seeing dozens of these orchids, lips quivering in the breeze, for the very first time. In the shade of the sandstone cliff, a spring wetting the earth, this little orchid had found a tiny, hospitable microclimate in which to flourish in the desert. Epipactis gigantea, is sometimes known as the stream orchid because it loves to grow in wet places from sea level to 7500 feet, where it is found in bogs, hot springs, road cuts and wet cliff faces. How strange to find it in the Mojave Desert with only 2-4 inches of rain a year! It is the most common native orchid in California and occurs all over Las Vegas where there is a little water—First Creek, La Madre Spring, Ash Spring, Pine Creek, Icebox Canyon, Spring Mountain Ranch, Sandstone Spring, and Blue Diamond to name some. Springs in Blue Diamond are being pumped dry, and there is worry that they may not survive there.
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The syrphid fly pollinates the orchid. The aroma of the orchid supposedly smells like the honeydew smell given off by aphids, which are the food supply for the syrphid fly larvae. Fooled by little projections on the orchid that look like masses of aphids and by the sweet smell, the syrphid fly lays its eggs on the orchid, inadvertently pollinating the flower in the process. Since there are really no aphids, just a trick, the poor little hatched larvae are doomed to perish. Epipactis comes from an ancient Greek word used by Theophrastus in 350 B.C. for a medicinal plant. Gigantea, of course, means gigantic, although neither the plant nor the flower is gigantic. The plant blooms to about three feet high, with 12-20 flowers per inflorescence. The flowers are about one-and-a-half to two inches across and usually face in the same direction. The sepals are dark green, and the lip is usually red, three-lobed in the middle, with yellow lateral lobes. Part of the lip is elongated and quivers in the breeze, hence its other popular name, the “chatterbox orchid” for its moving lips! The plant has ten or more green, alternating leave, which die back to the ground in the fall. Come winter, you don’t even know the orchid is there. Indians used a medicine of the fleshy roots for internal use when they felt sick all over. Other Indians were said to drink a similar concoction to combat mania and severe illness.

LISTERA CONVALLARIOIDES
This is one of those beauties that require a magnifying glass to truly appreciate. Convallarioides means “like lily-of-the-valley”, which it is supposed to resemble. Listera convallarioides is easy to tell from L. cordata since the lip of the former is shallowly trilobed and the latter is deeply forked. The whole genus Listera was named in honor of Martin Lister, an English botanist and scientist. It is a worldwide genus of 25 species, eight growing in the United States, and two in Nevada. Hard to find because of its small size, it reaches to just 10 inches, carrying over 25 small green or sometimes purple flowers. Some have said that the flower shape looks like a prehistoric bird or a mayfly. This orchid also has a special pollination device, a little projection from the rostellum that acts as a trigger firing pollen masses at visiting insects.

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LISTERA CORDATA
An adorable, tiny plant just 4-10 inches tall, it bears up to 30 flowers that are deeply forked for half its length. The little flowers look like tiny elves, with forked lip looking like legs, tiny horn-like projection looking like arms, and petals and sepals spreading over the lip like the hat. This orchid is not listed in the Flora of North America, but there is an herbarium sample for it, found in Snake Creek in the Snake Range of White Pine County, Listera cordata is part of a genus commonly called “twayblades” because it always has two leaves. With its heart-shaped opposite leaves halfway up its stem, it has earned the title “heartleaved twayblade”. Fungus gnats, attracted by odor and nectar, visit the orchid, triggering three pressure-sensitive hairs that eject a droplet of glue on the unsuspecting gnat. Then, the pollinia are dropped into the glue. The glue hardens like cement, and the fly is stuck with carrying the pollinia to another flower!!

PIPERIA UNALASCENSIS
The species is named for Unalaska, the Aleutian Island where it was first found. Commonly called Alaskan piperia or slender spire orchid, the small, delicate flowers are carried in a spire that varies from 6-24 inches. The genus was named in honor of C. V. Piper of the Agricultural Experiment Station at Pullman, Washington. In the fall, Piperia forms new underground roots, one of which later forms a new tuber. The basal leaves appear in late fall to spring, and the flower spikes arise from late springs to early summer. The leaves yellow and fall away before the flower opens; the flowers last from four to six weeks. Nocturnally fragrant yet lingering during the day, the flower attracts moths with its unusual smell, sometimes described as musky, soapy, or honey-like. Interestingly, when the flower first opens, the lip is held tight against the column forcing its
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pollinator to remove pollen only in the search for nectar in its spur. Aging over time, the lip moves downward, exposing the nectary and allowing pollen deposition. This clever strategy effectively prevents self-pollination by not having the male and female parts available at the same time. Over the years, this plant as been classified with Habenaria or Platanthera. Plants in all these form underground tubers with fibrous roots, but Piperia has round tubers and Platanthera has elongated tubers. Piperia has leaves near the base, and Platanthera has them scattered along the stem.

PLATANTHERA (syn. HABENARIA) DILATATA var. ALBIFLORA and var. LEUCOSTACHYS

The Bog Candle, Scent-Bottle, or White Bog Orchid, as it is commonly called, is a small white stalk of fragrant little flowers, maybe eight inches high and looking just like a little white candle. The first time I saw this orchid I was on the island of Newfoundland in Canada. They were just growing wild in the streets. They grew along the roadsides, in front of houses, in ditches, in forest, under picnic tables—just everywhere, hundreds and hundreds of them. They also grow in many counties in Nevada. UNR says it has numerous herbarium samples of it. It grows here with a wide range of heights, some plants having as many as 248 flowers. There are two varieties of Platanthera dilatata in Nevada, the var. albiflora and the var. leucostachys, with var. leucostachys being treated sometimes as a distinct species. Both have a spur carrying nectar, providing a reward for pollinators. The varieties are based on differing spur length reflecting different pollination pressures. The long spurs on the flowers and nocturnal fragrance of var. leucostachys means it is specialized for moth pollination. The short spur on variety albiflora suggests a broad range of pollinators including the bee or fly. Variety leucostachys (white means “white spike” in Greek) is easy to recognize because its flower is always white. The flowers are very fragrant smelling a lot like cloves. The petals trap the emerging lip and newly opened flowers have a loopy look. The upturned lip offers access to only one side of the lip, and the visiting insect can only take one pollinia per visit. This strategy ensures that the flower will have more pollinators carrying genetic material, supposedly

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increasing the chances for success. The plant blooms from May to September, and has a wide tolerance for surviving in different elevations. This orchid has been used in folk medicine by the Thompson Indians of British Columbia. “Young men use it as a wash to make them lucky, good looking and sweet smelling. Women use the wash to gain a mate and have success in love. Both sexes use it to obtain riches and property. When they dig up the plant they chant, ’Friend, I want wealth and much property.” Northwest Indians and Eskimos eat the corms that supposedly taste like potatoes. (Coffey, p.328) Flowering from April to September in wet meadows, marshes, stream banks and seeping slopes, its common name is “Sparsely flowering bog orchid”. Often producing over 120 green to yellowish green very fragrant flowers per plant, it is sparsely flowering only in comparison to Platanthera dilatata. It blooms in Mummy Springs in Mt. Charleston, and our club hiked up to see it. It is easily recognized by its green color and large column, which fills half the “hood” formed by the sepals and petals. This is a narrow flower that likes high elevations and wet ground. It is thought to be pollinated by a moth, the pollinia attaching to its proboscis.

PLATANTHERA (SYN. HABENARIA) SPARSIFLORA

PLATANTHERA STRICTA
Sometimes called Platanthera saccata, because of its “saccate” or purse-shaped spur, this two-to-three foot orchid can have sixty green flowers, sometimes with a purple tinge. As a reward to the variety of insects that visit the flower, the orchid offers droplets of nectar on the flowers as well as nectar inside the spur. Blooming from May to early August in Elko County at 7500 feet, it is called the Slender Bog Orchid. It is not mentioned in the Flora of North America but is mentioned in Correll’s Native Orchids Of North America and Luer’s Native Orchids Of The United States And Canada. It is pollinated by a whole group of insects with short mouthparts. It has a whole bouquet of treats to attract pollinators- floral
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fragrance, a sparkling, shimmering appearance of the inflorescence, extrafloral glucose to eat on the flower raceme, nectar in a spur, and a pollination chamber that can accommodate a variety of insects.

Of conservation concern, this rare orchid is a naturally occurring hybrid of S. romanzoffiana and S. magnicamporum, blooming in July and August, in moist to wet meadows, stream banks, and marshes. Although it has been found in Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nebraska, Utah, Washington and Wyoming, it is very rare in Nevada. It is commonly called Ute’s Ladies’-tresses and is pollinated by long-tongued bees like bumblebees that seek out the nectar. James Morefield of the Nevada Natural Heritage Program says that it is listed as a threatened species under the US Endangered Species Act .He further remarked in an e-mail on April 29, 2003: One of my highest orchid priorities has been to establish whether or not Spiranthes diluvialis is still present in Nevada. The only record is from the 1930’s, probably in the native hay meadow directly below (west of Panaca Spring on the northern edge of Panaca in Lincoln County). This meadow is privately owned, and so far the landowner has not been keen on allowing a State employee to determine whether or not a threatened orchid exists on their land. James Coyner, American Orchid Society Rep to the Utah Orchid Society who is a Spiranthes diluvialis recovery team member, recounts his frustration also: I also searched an area north of there in White Pine County in the general area of the Pony Express Route west of the Goshute Indian Reservation. The search was based on a ranch hand’s report that he had seen such a plant growing there. He found no orchids and would be very interested in anyone who has. It would be an interesting project for our club to try to relocate this orchid.

SPIRANTHES DILUVIALIS

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SPIRANTHES INFERNALIS
Ash Meadows in Nye County is an unlikely place to find an orchid. Hot and dry, just nine miles from Death Valley Junction, the ground is so thickly covered with salt that it looked like winter snow. Fed by a vast network of underground springs, the ground bounces like foam rubber when you walk on it. On June 25, 2003, seven hardy Greater Las Vegas Orchid Society conservation enthusiasts braved the intense summer heat to participate in the orchid count of Spiranthes infernalis at Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge. Spiranthes infernalis is found there and nowhere else in the world. We got up at dawn and drove 90 miles to make sure that the population of endemic orchids was safe. Invasive weeds, like the Russian knapweed (Acroptilon repens), a noxious perennial herb, probably introduced in hay from Eurasia, now covers over 500 acres where there were none in 1990. The fear is that the introduced weeds will squeeze out the rare and exotic orchid. The 22,000 acres of Meadows are protected as a national wildlife refuge because they contain a greater concentration of unique species than any other location in the United States—13 threatened and endangered species and at least 24 plants and animals found nowhere else in the world- including our orchid. It is one of the few natural desert oases in the Southwest, providing habitat for 220 species of migratory birds. Spiranthes come from two Greek words meaning “coil” and “flowers” for the coiled or spiraled flower spikes of this genus. Because of the supposed resemblance of the spirals to some hairstyles, Spiranthes are commonly called “ladies’-tresses.” Spiranthes infernalis, Ash Meadows ladies’-tresses, was named in 1989 by Charles J. Sheviak and is endemic to the alkaline, moist soils of Ash Meadows, meaning it is ONLY found there, making it very special. It is similar to other Spiranthes with many small, white, spiraling orchid flowers. In 1990, populations worldwide were estimated at between 730-1160 individuals. Until last year, global counts for species were around 1400 individuals. Surveys last year estimated 10,000 individuals and this year, happily, the survey we took part in found 13,500 plants.

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SPIRANTHES PORRIFOLIA
“Porrifolia” comes from two Latin words meaning “leek green” and “leaves”, referring to the color of the leaves. The beautiful flower spike has multiple spirals of over 100 creamy yellow flowers. Thoreau wrote of Spiranthes, “Its crystalline white flowers are arranged in a dense spiral cone like the thread of a screw” although others think it resembles a girl’s braids. Restricted in range, it is limited to the western parts of the United States, mainly California, Oregon and Washington, giving it is common name of “western ladies’-tresses”. Its peak blooming season is July and August, and its blooming season overlaps with Spiranthes romanzoffiana, which may account for the existence of natural hybrids between the two. It grows in moist meadows and seeps. Darwin described the pollination mechanism of Spiranthes to prevent self-pollination. On freshly opened flowers, the column is positioned close to the lip blocking the stigma. The insect probing for nectar comes away with a load of pollen but cannot deposit it on the blocked female part. As the flower ages, the stigma is revealed, and an insect can deposit pollen from another flower. This is a common strategy of Spiranthes.

SPIRANTHES ROMANZOFFIANA
The species is named in honor of Nicholas Romanzof, a Russian minister of state when the flower was discovered in Alaska, Alaska was a Russian territory and so named it for its minister. The sepals and petals form a hood over the column and the basal half of the lip, and the common name is therefore “hooded ladies’tresses”, the tresses referring to the “curly” spirals of flowers. It has a “pandurate” or violin-shaped lip that is distinctive. In the Southwest, blooming size is between 4 and 16 inches with up to 60 flowers in three dense spirals. It is found in meadows as well as springs and grassy wet areas. Blooming in August, it is difficult to find when not in bloom because the grasses and other plants hide its short leaves. Spiranthes romanzoffiana has a sweet aroma that has been described as that of sweet lilacs. Eleven pollinators are attracted to its delightful aroma, six species of
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bumblebee, one cuckoo bee, one leaf-cutting bee, and three halictid bees. Bees visit many times over a long period, landing on the lowest flowers first and working their way up the inflorescence. Supposedly, the lower flowers have the most nectar and are therefore the most attractive. The tallest, prettiest plants attract the most visitors. Pollinia are attached to the insect’s tongue! So there we have them, all twelve. What a thrill it is for us to know that so many native orchids have found a home in Nevada! The following orchids are mentioned in the Flora as being in Nevada: Flora of North America Editorial Committee, ed. Flora of North America: Volume 26. New York, Oxford. Oxford University Press. 2002 Spiranthes romanzoffiana Spiranthes porrifolia Spiranthes diluvialis Spiranthes infernalis Platanthera dilatata var. albiflora Platanthera dilatata var. leucostachys Platanthera sparsiflora Piperia unalascensis Listera convallarioides Corallorhiza striata var. striata Corallorhiza striata var. vreelandii Corallorhiza maculata var. occidentalis Platanthera stricta is not mentioned in the FLORA but is mentioned as being from Nevada in: Correll, Donovan Stewart. Native Orchids of North America North of Mexico. Stanford University Press. Stanford. 1978. Luer, C.A. The Native Orchids of the United States and Canada. New York Botanical Garden. New York. 1975. The following orchids are represented by dried specimens and are in the database of UNLV at Las Vegas, Nevada. Thanks to Professor Wes Niles and Kathryn Birgy for all your help. Corallorhiza maculata Epipactis gigantea Habenaria dilatata (syn. Platanthera) Habenaria dilatata var. leucostachys (syn. Platanthera)
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Habenaria sparsiflora (syn. Platanthera) Listera cordata (not mentioned in the Flora above)**** Spiranthes infernalis Spiranthes romanzoffiana The following species are dried specimens and in the database of UNR. Thanks to Arnold Tiehm and Christy Malone for your help. Corallorhiza maculata Epipactis gigantea Habenaria dilatata (syn. Platanthera) Habenaria dilatata var. leucostachys (syn. Platanthera) Habenaria sparsiflora (syn. Platanthera) Listera convallarioides Spiranthes porrifolia Spiranthes romanzoffiana In the herbariums of UNR and UNLV, the following orchids are represented by county (starting from Southern Nevada and going north) CLARK: Epipactis gigantea Platanthera (Habenaria) dilatata var. leucostachys (This orchid is NOT represented in the herbariums. However, Dr. Patrick Leary asserts that it was collected by Ira Stokey in Kyle Canyon, and Dr. Leary is the expert on this area’s plants.) Platanthera (Habenaria) sparsiflora NYE: Corallorhiza maculata Epipactis gigantea Platanthera (Habenaria) sparsiflora Spiranthes infernalis Spiranthes romanzoffiana LINCOLN: Platanthera (Habenaria) sparsiflora ESMERALDA Platanthera (Habenaria) sparsiflora MINERAL:
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None DOUGLAS: Corallorhiza maculata Epipactis gigantea Platanthera (Habenaria) dilatata var. leucostachys Platanthera (Habenaria) dilatata (no variety listed) Listera convallarioides LYON: Platanthera (Habenaria) dilatata (no variety mentioned) CARSON CITY: Platanthera (Habenaria) sparsiflora Platanthera (Habenaria) dilatata var. leucostachys Listera convallarioides CHURCHILL: None STOREY: Platanthera (Habenaria) dilatata var. leucostachys LANDER: Platanthera (Habenaria) dilatata var. leucostachys EUREKA: None WHITE PINE: Corallorhiza maculata Platanthera (Habenaria) dilatata (var. not mentioned) Platanthera (Habenaria) dilatata var. leucostachys Platanthera (Habenaria) sparsiflora Listera convallarioides Listera cordata WASHOE: Corallorhiza maculata Listera convallarioides Platanthera (Habenaria) dilatata var. leucostachys
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Platanthera (Habenaria) dilatata (var. not mentioned)

Platanthera (Habenaria) sparsiflora Spiranthes porrifolia Spiranthes romanzoffiana PERSHING: None HUMBOLDT: Epipactis gigantea Platanthera (Habenaria) sparsiflora ELKO: Corallorhiza maculata Platanthera dilatata (var. not mentioned) Platanthera sparsiflora Spiranthes romanzoffiana Platanthera stricta (specified county by Correll) The following orchids are found in the herbarium from the following counties: Corallorhiza maculata: Douglas, Washoe, White Pine, Nye, Elko Epipactis gigantea: Clark, Douglas, Humboldt, Nye Listera convallarioides: Douglas, Ormsby/Carson, Washoe, White Pine Listera cordata: White Pine Platanthera dilatata (no variety listed): Elko, Douglas, Lyon, Washoe, White Pine Platanthera dilatata var. leucostachys: Carson, Douglas, Elko, Lander, Storey, Washoe, White Pine Platanthera sparsiflora: Carson City, Clark, Lincoln, White Pine, Elko, Esmeralda, Humboldt, Nye, Washoe
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Spiranthes infernalis: Nye Spiranthes romanzoffiana: Elko, Washoe, Nye
Author’s note; I could not have done this little article without the help and guidance of Ron Coleman. I never appreciated how much time and effort went into his books until I started writing this tiny shadow of his work. Much of the information in the article comes from his books. I am overwhelmed with gratitude to Paul Martin Brown and Stan Folsom who kindly allowed me to reprint the pictures from their wonderful new book on wild orchids. Thanks, too, Dr. Patrick Leary, Southern Nevada plant expert for his help with the local orchids and for actually showing them to us. I am grateful to Dr. Wes Niles of the UNLV Herbarium for the time he spent with me at the herbarium as well as to Kathryn Birgyy for her help with the database. At UNR, I am indebted to Arnold Tiehm and Christy Malone for information about the herbarium. Thanks to Gina Glenn of the US Fish and Wildlife Service for allowing me to take part in the Spiranthes infernalis orchid count. I much appreciate the input by e-mail from James Coyner of the Spiranthes diluvialis recovery team and to James Morefield of the Nevada Natural Heritage Program, as well as to Dr. Lucy Jordan and to Marilyn Light, Chairperson of North American Regional Orchid Specialist Group, In addition, I appreciate all the leads from David McAdoo, leader of the Native Orchid Group, a great organization. BIBLIOGRAPHY Brown, Paul Martin & Stan Folsom. The Wild Orchids of North America, North of Mexico. University Press of Florida. Gainesville. 2003. Coffey, Timothy. The History and Folklore of North America. Houghton Mifflin Company. Boston, New York. 1993. Coleman, Ronald A.. The Wild Orchids of Arizona and New Mexico. Comstock Publishing Associates, Cornell University Press. Ithaca and London. 2002. The Wild Orchids of California. Comstock Publishing Associates, Cornell University Press. Ithaca and London. 1995. Correll, Donovan Stewart. Native Orchids of North America. Stanford University Press. Stanford, California. 1978. Flora of North America Editorial Committee. Flora of North America North of Mexico, Volume 26.Oxford University Press. New York and Oxford. 2002 Keenan, Philip E. Wild Orchids Across North America. Timber Press. Portland. 1998. Van Der Cingel, N.A. An Atlas of Orchid Pollination: America, Africa, Asia and Australia. AA Balkema Publishers. Rotterdam. 2001. Carol Siegel 8601 Robinson Ridge Drive,Las Vegas, NV 89117 growlove@worldnet.att.net

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Above: Corallorhiza maculata, C. striata var. striata, C. striata var. vreelandii Epipactis gigantea; Listera convallarioides; L. cordata Over, page 20: Piperia unalascensis; Platanthera dilatata var. albiflora, P. dilatata var. leucostachys, P. sparsiflora, P. stricta; Spiranthes diluvialis S. infernalis, S. porrifolia, S. romanzoffiana Photos by P.M. Brown; S. infernalis by C. Siegel 19

Siegel: THE NATIVE ORCHIDS OF NEVADA

20

Siegal: THE NATIVE ORCHIDS OF NEVADA

Corallorhiza maculata

Corallorhiza striata

Epipactis gigantea

Listera convallarioides

Listera cordata

Piperia unalascensis

21

Siegal: THE NATIVE ORCHIDS OF NEVADA

Platanthera dilatata

Platanthera sparsiflora

Platanthera stricta

Spiranthes diluvialis Spiranthes infernalis

Spiranthes porrifolia

Spiranthes romanzoffiana 22

Folsom: ORCHID MEMORIES

ORCHID MEMORIES
Stan Folsom Orchids can subtly seduce someone with their rarity, allure and beauty. Some like the quest to see as many native species as one can in the United States, therefore falling victim to the rarity of some of our native orchids. Others are attracted to orchids for the cache attached to them and they are trapped by the orchid's allure. Lastly, some just enjoy looking at these amazing specimens, drinking in their oftenbreathtaking beauty and so they, too, are snared by the orchids into a lifetime of devotion. This compendium of orchid memories details my journey with words and paintings about these plants and their companion plants in the wild. As is every artist's right, I have chosen to paint these examples partly from memories of the encounter, partly relying on photographic materials and partly from that indefinable something that prods every artist to create his or her vision of the world. I hope you find the experience pleasurable and worthwhile. Arethusa bulbosa, the dragon mouth orchid, dots northern bogs with splashes of brilliant magenta pink, lavender, or blue, and sometimes white, as far as the eye can see. I first encountered these little gems in a boggy piece of pasture at Goose Rocks in Maine. I also saw hundreds of them while on a trip to Newfoundland. They seem to sprig the blanket of the open bogs with their full range of colors, luring me to explore in ever-widening searches that were rewarded with spectacular plants. This painting is a memory of such a bog I found near Schoodic Point on the northern Maine coast. Carved out of the encroaching woods, it was a soggy exploration as I hopped from hummock to hummock trying to avoid the chilly waters that pervaded the bog. In the midst of the spruce along the perimeter of the bog, the tamaracks were just coming into leaf, framing the picture in my mind. Blooming with the Arethusa I saw the early marsh violet which provided my picture with a dazzling contrast to the brightly color orchids. With all these elements in place it was easy to set to work to record my impressions of this encounter.
23

Folsom: ORCHID MEMORIES

Arethusa bulbosa

Cypripedium parviflorum var. pubescens

24

Folsom: ORCHID MEMORIES

Cypripedium parviflorum var. pubescens, the large yellow lady's-slipper, is widespread through the United States and Canada, but this clump grows in the duff along a streambed in southern Maine amidst the ferns that will later grow to cover the orchid's foliage. I first became acquainted with this handsome member of the Orchid family as a young child wandering the woods near my parents' summer cottage. I was not aware of what I was looking at until many years later when I was able to accompany Paul Martin Brown up to Caribou, Maine (which is several hundreds of miles from the cottage). We were taken to a woodland that had upwards of a thousand blooming plants propagated there by Martin Rasmussen. As this orchid transplants fairly easily he gave us a clump to take back to the cottage where it has faithfully produced blooms each year since. That experience awakened my recollections of seeing these orchids when I was a child. Paul and I hunted for them then and relocated my original site. We searched farther afield and found quite a few in the area. I was especially taken with the ones that grew along the streambed so they became my inspiration for the orchid memory. Calypso bulbosa var. americana, the eastern fairy-slipper, comes up on the mossy forest floor under northern white cedars, sparking the gloomy bog with their jewellike colors. Those in the painting are a memory from northern Vermont in a shadowy bog deep in the woods on Mr. Shield's property. Mr. Shields has a handsome farmhouse that sits opposite the site on a sweep of lawn and farmyard. After going to his house to apprise him of our desire to trek into his woods across the road to see the Calypso, we arm ourselves with insect repellent and begin our quest. The trail can be sloppy if the spring has been a wet one. There are riverlets twining through the hummocky woods. Mainly northern white cedar grow in these woods. In the gloom of the shady knell we finally stumble upon a Calypso. Its diminutive size has made it difficult to spot but once I have seen one I can more easily hunt for others. The time in searching is finally rewarded with a small group of these spectacular blooms growing beside an uprooted cedar, its exposed roots framing the scene. Hence my inspiration for this orchid memory. Continuing my remembrances, I saw relatives of Calypso bulbosa on the West Coast all the way to Alaska. Throughout this region you can find Calypso bulbosa var. occidentalis. It can be found blooming under the California redwoods, in the Olympic Mountains of Washington, and even into the far reaches of southern Alaska, where I found a cluster still in bloom in July. I have even seen the white-flowered form.

25

Folsom: ORCHID MEMORIES

Calypso bulbosa var. americana

Cypripedium montanum 26

Folsom: ORCHID MEMORIES

When Paul and I and our two Pomeranians made a journey across country in 1999 we saw many lovely orchids in bloom as well as some that might be classified as small, insignificant specimens. Many will argue that there are no small, insignificant orchids but I have a harder time enjoying some of the Piperias that are so prevalent in the West. I will grant that some of them were tall and magnificently flowered but they are not my idea of a spectacular orchid to paint. On out return to the East, we traveled through the province of British Columbia and the Canadian Rockies. We stopped often to botanize the roadsides and were rewarded with discovering a spectacular orchid. Paul spotted the clump as I was admiring the rocky hillsides and tumbling streams that cascaded down from the mountaintops. Paul called to me to come and see his discovery. Cypripedium montanum, the mountain lady's-slippers were peeking out beneath towering Douglas firs in these mountainous regions north of Radium Hot Springs, which is in British Columbia. My mind was imprinted with the majesty of the scene and when my creative urges prompted me to record it in 2002, the scene easily materialized. It was near this spot where I discovered the pad leaf orchid, (Platanthera orbiculata) down a trail I followed with the dogs that descended deep into the woods. Paul told me that these orchids are very rare in that part of the world. Just year, my partner, Paul Martin Brown, and I bundled the dogs and our cat into the car and set out for Arkansas to see if we could find a very rare orchid, Calopogon oklahomensis. We had directions from a fellow enthusiast who knew of the existence of a remnant prairie where they could be found. We arrived at the spot and found the prairie alive with colorful plants but the orchid seemed to be non-existent. While Paul searched the first patch, I drove slowly along the roadside hunting for a telltale spot of magenta that would mark the presence of the orchid. My quest did not produce any evidence of the plants. When I returned to the section Paul had explored without success, I traipsed all the way to the farthest extremity with the same result. Returning to check on the animals left in the car, I stumbled upon a cluster of the orchids blooming below the taller prairie plants. No wonder they were so hard to spot from the highway or in the actual prairie with all the competition from the other larger prairie plants. Crossing to the other side of the road where there was more prairie to explore, I gave the dogs a short break and scrambled up into the prairie with them when an 18-wheeler bore down upon us. There, Calopogon oklahomensis, the Oklahoma grasspink, came up in wild profusion throughout the remnant railroad prairie. Calling Paul over to my discovery, we found several hundred plants in bloom that day in early May. Blooming with them were prairie coreopsis, the green prairie milkweed, and spiderwort.
27

Folsom: ORCHID MEMORIES

Calopogon oklahomensis

Dactylorhiza aristata var. kodiakensis 28

Folsom: ORCHID MEMORIES

I was inspired to fill my picture with as many examples of the colors of the Calopogons as I could. The other prairie plants could not be left out of the memory so I squeezed in as many of the lovely prairie plants as well. The hazy sky with the clouds scudding through it evokes the constant wind that blew across the landscape while we were there. Paul took a trip to Alaska with a group of fellow enthusiasts one summer. He was so enamored of the area that he wanted to revisit the state. This time I was able to accompany the group. I loved being able to scout out orchids as the others photographed. One of the sites the group wanted to visit was on Kodiak Island off the coast of Alaska. The day the flight was booked was overcast and the trip looked in jeopardy. Our plane took off and we were soon enveloped in fog and mist. The pilot expressed his doubts about landing as we dropped so precipitously close to the ocean that we could suddenly see waves beneath us through the break in the cloud cover. He pulled up sharply and tried another run toward the island. After two shots he reluctantly turned about and we were once again back in Anchorage. With a, "We'll try it again this afternoon," the pilot allowed his passengers to disembark. Needless to say we were able to make a landing and had the amazing experience of being in a natural wonderland. It is largely unspoiled by civilization and commercialization. We had a wonderful guide who took us about the area. My most vivid recollections were of a hillside pasture that had sweeping views out to the ocean below the heavy clouds. This pasture had buffalo wandering around, as they will fight the Kodiak bears that try to attack them unlike what ordinary cattle would do. The carpet of the pasture was alive with wildflowers and orchids. One could hardly walk for all the varieties of blooming plants that crowded the grassy slopes. Dactylorhiza aristata var. kodiakensis, the Kodiak orchid, grows in abundance on these bluffs overlooking the sea. I painted the memory of the glowering sky and the lush landscape with these orchids, the scarlet painted cups, the bunchberries, the Sitka lupine, and the chocolate lilies scattered everywhere. Only the roaming buffalo are missing. Platanthera ciliaris, the orange fringed orchis, grows from southern New England to Florida and west to eastern Texas. These glorious plants are from a roadside ditch in northern Florida growing with cinnamon fern, brown-eyed coreopsis, and pink sabatia. We traveled the short distance from our Florida home to see these plants. They bloomed in a sub-division of middle class homes in the wet ditch that ran alongside the roadway. They perched on the banks leading up into people's yards. It was fortunate these homeowners did not feel inclined to mow their lawns right down to the edges of the road for they would have eradicated the entire population.
29

Folsom: ORCHID MEMORIES

Platanthera ciliaris

Platanthera leucophaea

30

Folsom: ORCHID MEMORIES

Here in Florida, the highway departments have been very cooperative about their mowing times. In Goethe State Forest they have stopped mowing a wide swath and only mow the immediate edge of the roadway. Once a year they mow the entire sweep of the roadsides to keep down the woody material. Since this was instituted several new orchids for that stretch of road have shown up. On Florida's Turnpike for the last few years they have stopped mowing off the spikes of Sacoila lanceolata until the plants have set seed. They will even mow around a single plant with those enormous gang mowers that they use. By such actions as these and those of the subdivisions homeowners I had a chance to be inspired to record these orchid glories that I otherwise might not have seen. Platanthera leucophaea, the eastern prairie fringed orchis, is such an erratic bloomer that it was hard to catch in flower. These striking plants were seen at Chiwaukee Prairie in southern Wisconsin in July blooming with coneflowers and prairie phlox. We had set out from Boston in the heat of early summer and traveling west came into the Chicago area and located suitable lodging. The next morning, in the early rising mists, we were in the prairie searching for the plants. They were easy to spot, as they are tall and majestic rising above the prairie grasses and wildflowers. I was not able to paint them on the spot but I did make a watercolor of chicory and black-eyed Susans and soapworts that I collected along a roadside near the motel. The next summer when Paul led a group to see the eastern prairie fringed orchis, which had stubbornly refused to bloom that year, I painted a group of the Michigan lilies that grew along the edge of the prairie. It wasn't until after I had visited southern Manitoba on a hot and dusty July morning to see hundreds of the closely related Platanthera praeclara dotting the open prairie that I had enough inspiration to attempt a painting of my experiences. I chose to remember Chiwaukee because it was cool and refreshing that early morning when I first saw Platanthera leucophaea. Let me conclude my essay by assuring you that I will continue to gather impressions of my quests for orchids as I explore our rich countryside for more of the exquisite plants that have taken my fancy. Paul and I will be traveling this month to locate the very rare Spiranthes parksii in Jasper County, Texas. Our two dogs will accompany us as usual. Possibly this experience will bloom in my imagination as I continue to record my impressions on paper. A limited number of full-color, 16X20, matted prints (with optional framing) are available from the artist. Contact Stan Folsom at naorchid@aol.com or at 10896 SW 90th Terrace, Ocala, FL 34481 for prices and availability.

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Brown & Stewart: TWO NEW PLATANTHERA HYBRIDS

NEW TAXA

Pteroglossaspis ecristata forma purpurea P.M. Brown J. Fowler

Calopogon barbatus forma lilacinus P.M. Brown

Malaxis spicata forma trifoliata P.M. Brown

Calopogon barbatus forma albiflorus P.M. Brown D. McAdoo 32

Calopogon oklahomensis forma albiflorus P.M. Brown

Brown & Stewart: TWO NEW PLATANTHERA HYBRIDS

NEW TAXA

NEW TAXA: FIVE DISTINCTIVE NEW FORMS
Paul Martin Brown Four new color forms and one growth form of our native orchids are herewith presented. Two with white-flowered forms, two distinctive-colored forms, and a distinctive growth form are proposed. In all five cases the plants remain consistent each year, and in several cases the color forms are widespread throughout the range of the species. TYPE: United States, North Carolina: Brunswick County, Green Swamp May 2003 (holotype: photograph D. McAdoo. North American Native Orchid Journal 9: 32. 2003.) Forma floribus albus conspeciebus diversa. Differs from other forms of the species in its pure white flowers. Calopogon barbatus is a widespread grass-pink throughout much of the Southeastern Coastal Plain and for the most part is consistent in a rich magenta coloring. Upon rare occasion a paler plant may be seen. White-flowered forms have only been noted twice, both in 2003. David McAdoo's sighting of a whiteflowered form in the Green Swamp of southeastern North Carolina provides the type for the forma albiflorus.

Calopogon barbatus forma albiflorus P.M. Brown forma nov.

Calopogon barbatus forma lilacinus P.M. Brown forma nov. TYPE: United States, Georgia: Charlton County, St. George, roadside scrape, April 12, 2003 Brown 2309 (holotype: GAS) photograph P.M. Brown. North American Native Orchid Journal 9: 31. 2003). Forma floribus lilacinus conspeciebus diversa. Differs from other forms of the species in its lilac-colored flowers. Growing in southeastern Georgia, not far from the Florida border, are several hundred Calopogon barbatus and within this wonderful stand are several plants that are a clear pale lilac in color. The little roadside scrape area is most remarkable for is has not only the Calopogon barbatus, but also C. pallidus, C. tuberosus (both of which have white-flowered forms there), Cleistes divaricata, Pogonia ophioglossoides, and several species of carnivores including pitcher plants, sundews, bladderworts, and butterworts. And that is just one day in April!

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Brown & Stewart: TWONEW TAXA NEW PLATANTHERA HYBRIDS

TYPE: United States, Arkansas: Prairie County, railroad prairie May 5, 2003 (holotype: photograph P.M. Brown. North American Native Orchid Journal 9: 32. 2003. Forma floribus albus conspeciebus diversa. Differs from other forms of the species in its pure white flowers. Recently described in 1995 by Doug Goldman, the Oklahoma grass-pink is a small but colorful orchid of the south-central prairies. The typical color of the species can vary from deep royal purple through magenta and pale pinks. Occasionally mixed within this array are pure white-flowered plants. The prairie remnant where the type is located is a narrow strip along a railroad in eastern Arkansas. TYPE: United States, Florida: Levy County, Goethe State Forest, wooded swamp October 14, 2003 Brown 2315 (holotype: FLAS) photograph P.M. Brown. North American Native Orchid Journal 9: 32. 2003. Forma trifolia conspeciebus diversa. Differs from other forms of the species in having three leaves. Several species of eastern North American Malaxis that are unifoliate have been found with two leaves and have been so named. This is the first example of a bifoliate Malaxis with three leaves. Several plants of varying size were found with three leaves growing in the same swampy woods in north-central Florida.

Calopogon oklahomensis forma albiflorus P.M. Brown forma nov.

Malaxis spicata forma trifoliata P.M. Brown forma nov.

Pteroglossaspis ecristata forma purpurea P.M. Brown forma nov.

TYPE: United States, South Carolina: Berkley County, August 2003 (Holotype: photograph J. Fowler. North American Native Orchid Journal 9: 32. 2003). Forma floribus purpureus conspeciebus diversa. Differs from other forms of the species in its purple flowers. This unusual color form is perhaps the most interesting of all of those proposed in this publication. Throughout all of Florida and in the few location in adjacent Georgia and Alabama plants of the crestless plume orchids are typically yellow/purple/green/black in coloration. Many of the plants found in South Carolina and Louisiana are this handsome rosy-purple in color. When completing his treatment for Flora of North America North of Mexico Gustavo Romero (Orchid Herbarium of Oakes Ames) concluded that they are all the same widespread species. A pure yellow-flowered form, P. ecristata forma flava P.M. Brown, is also known

34

Brown & Stewart: TWO NEW PLATANTHERA HYBRIDS

TWO NEW PLATANTHERA HYBRIDS Paul Martin Brown & Scott Stewart
While searching for plants of Platanthera chapmanii hybrid swarms were noted in both the Apalachicola National Forest and Osceola National Forest in the panhandle of Florida (Folsom, 1984). Both of these hybrids appear to be frequent when the parents are found growing together. Several earlier collections labeled as P. cristata, P. chapmanii, and P. ciliaris have often proven to be the hybrids. Spur length, orifice opening and column shape are all helpful in determining both the species and the hybrids.

Platanthera xosceola P.M. Brown & S.L. Stewart nothsp. nov.

Hybrid e Platanthera chapmanii et P. ciliaris; floribus, calcaribus, et columinus intermedius Hybrid between Platanthera chapmanii and P. ciliaris ; flowers, spur, and column intermediate TYPE: U.S.A. Florida: Baker County. 27 July 2003. Experimental Forest at Osceola National Forest along highway US-90 west of the town of Olustee. G. Anglin & S.L. Stewart SLS #121 (holotype: FLAS) photograph p. 36. Platanthera xapalachicola P.M. Brown & S.L. Stewart nothsp. nov. Hybrid e Platanthera chapmanii et P. cristata; floribus, calcaribus, et columinus intermedius Hybrid between Platanthera chapmanii and P. cristata; flowers, spur, and column intermediate TYPE: U.S.A. Florida: Liberty County. 26 July 2003. Apalachicola National Forest along Forest Road 123 (Cotton Landing Loop Road) off State Road 379 out of Sumatra, FL G. Anglin & S.L. Stewart SLS #122 (holotype: FLAS) photograph p. 36.
Literature Cited: Folsom, J.P. 1984. Reinterpretation of the status and relationships of the yellow-fringed orchid complex. Orquidea (Mexico) 9(2): 337-345. The authors thank Guy Anglin, botanist for the National Forest for his cooperation and Bill & Pam Anderson for assistance in the field in ANF. Paul Martin Brown, 10896 SW 90th Terrace, Ocala, FL 34481 naorchid@aol.com Scott L. Stewart, Plant Restoration, Conservation and Propagation Biotechnology Program Environmental Horticulture Department, University of Florida, PO Box 110675, Gainesville, Florida 32611 slstewar@ufl.edu

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Brown & Stewart: TWO NEW PLATANTHERA HYBRIDS

P. xapalachicola

P. ciliaris

P. chapmanii

P. xosceola 36

P. cristata

Brown: UNDERSTANDING PLATANTHERA CHAPMANII

UNDERSTANDING PLATANTHERA CHAPMANII, ITS ORIGINS AND HYBRIDS
Paul Martin Brown Although geographically restricted to the southern portion of the southeastern United States, Platanthera chapmanii (Small) Luer emend. Folsom, Chapman’s fringed orchis, is an important component of the summer-flowering orchid flora of the Gulf Coastal Plain and northeastern Florida (Folsom, 1984). Historically known from East Texas, much of northern Florida, and two sites in southeastern Georgia, today it can be best found in the Apalachicola and Osceola National Forests of Florida. Occasionally, other small sites in northern Florida persist. The species is absent from the eastern half of the Panhandle and the Marion and Polk County records for Florida appear to be Channell’s hybrid fringed orchis, P. xchannellii Folsom. Only a few sites remain in East Texas and the Georgia locale is based upon an historic collection. No collections have ever been made from the area between Apalachicola and East Texas. Understanding this species and its relationships to the closely related orange fringed orchis, Platanthera ciliaris (L.) Lindley, and orange crested orchis, P. cristata (Michaux) Lindley, is greatly simplified if the observer can see all three taxa in one field session. This can only be accomplished in the Osceola National Forest, for the orange fringed orchis is historical and apparently absent from any of the other known localities for Chapman’s fringed orchis. Liggio & Liggio (1999) clearly state that orange fringed orchis has never been found within any of the Texas locales for Chapman’s fringed orchis. Conversely, the orange crested orchis is often found growing within or nearby many of the Chapman’s fringed orchis sites, especially in eastern Florida. Folsom aptly demonstrated in his 1984 publication that the origins of Platanthera chapmanii were most likely an ancient hybridization of orange fringed orchis and orange crested orchis. Therefore Chapman’s fringed orchis appears to be intermediate in size and characters between the two ancestors. Over the years it has evolved into a stable, reproducing species with a very distinctive column. At the same time the contemporary hybrid of orange fringed orchis and orange crested

37

Brown: UNDERSTANDING PLATANTHERA CHAPMANII

orchis, P. xchannellii, occurs in rare situations when both parents are present. It, too, is intermediate between the parents, but the column is unlike that of Chapman’s fringed orchis. One of the best helps in the initial determination of plants in the field is observing what predominates in the area. If both the orange fringed orchis and the orange crested orchis are present and only a few intermediates are to be found then they, in all probability, would be the hybrid, Platanthera xchannellii. If the majority of plants appear intermediate between orange fringed orchis and orange crested orchis and only a few of either of the latter species are present then the observer needs to look carefully at the shape of the column, and most likely the majority of plants will be Chapman’s fringed orchis. Characters that help in determining which species are present include geographic location, diameter of raceme, size of flower, length and position of spur, and shape of orifice. To simply state that the orange fringed orchis is larger, Chapman’s fringed orchis, intermediate in size, and orange crested orchis, smaller, has led to much confusion. For many orchid enthusiasts this, although not stated, implied overall size, especially height. That is not accurate and height should never be taken into account. All three species can grow from 10 or 15 cm to, in the case of Chapman’s fringed orchis and orange fringed orchis, over a meter in height! When size comparisons are made they refer to the diameter of the raceme and measurements of the individual flowers. Even the overall height of the flowering raceme is not a good criterion for identification. Because of the ancestral parentage of Chapman’s fringed orchis, plants can easily favor the overall raceme shape of either parent, but the raceme diameter appears to remain constant. The following illustrations will assist in understanding this comparison. In addition to understanding the species, orchid observers need to be aware of the hybrids that are involved in this complex (Brown, 2002; Brown & Stewart, 2003). These hybrids that are readily involved include: • Platanthera xapalachicola P.M. Brown & S. Stewart (Chapman’s fringed orchis x orange crested orchis • Platanthera xchannellii Folsom (orange fringed orchis x orange crested orchis) • Platanthera xosceola P.M. Brown & S. Stewart (Chapman’s fringed orchis x orange fringed orchis) Relationships among this group are best summed up in the following diagram. The white-flowered species, Platanthera blephariglottis (Willdenow) Lindley, northern white fringed orchis, P. conspicua (Nash) P.M. Brown, southern white fringed

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Brown: UNDERSTANDING PLATANTHERA CHAPMANII

orchis, and P. integrilabia Correll, monkey-face orchis, are included in this diagram for completeness in the group.
P. chapmanii

P. xosceola

P. xapalachicola P. xchannellii P. xbicolor

P. cristata
P. xcanbyi

P. ciliaris

P. blephariglottis
P. xbeckneri P. xlueri

P. conspicua P. integrilabia

Platanthera xapalachicola is locally common in northern Florida where both parents frequently grow together. They usually occur as individuals and may appear within stands of Chapman’s fringed orchis as smaller flowered, more slender plants or within stands of orange crested orchis as larger flowered, more robust individuals. The hooked column of Chapman’s fringed orchis is usually dominant but the spur length and position is intermediate. Platanthera xchannellii and Chapman’s fringed orchis can be difficult to tell apart. One of the best ways is to look about and see which other species are growing nearby. If all the plants observed are the same, and within the range of Chapman’s fringed orchis, it is most likely Chapman’s fringed orchis, whereas if it is a colony of mixed species and only a few intermediate plants are present it is more likely to be P. xchannellii. Platanthera xosceola is known only from Osceola National Forest where it is the only place documented that both parents are found growing together. Plants of the hybrid usually occur as individuals and may appear within stands of Chapman’s fringed orchis as larger flowered, more robust plants with decidedly longer spurs or within stands of orange fringed orchis as smaller more compactly flowered

39

Brown: UNDERSTANDING PLATANTHERA CHAPMANII

individuals. The hooked column of Chapman’s fringed orchis is not as dominant as in P. xapalachicola.
Literature Cited: Brown, P.M. 2002. Revalidation of Platanthera conspicua. North American Native Orchid Journal 8: 3–14. Brown, P.M. and S. L. Stewart. 2003. Two new Platanthera hybrids. North American Native Orchid Journal 9: 35-36. Folsom, J.P. 1984. Reinterpretation of the status and relationships of the yellow-fringed orchid complex. Orquidea (Mexico) 9(2): 337-345. Liggio, J. and A.O. Liggio. 1999. Wild Orchids of Texas. Austin, Tex.: University of Texas Press.

Paul Martin Brown 10896 SW 90th Terrace Ocala, FL 34481 naorchid@aol.com

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Empiricist: THE OLDER ENTHUSIAST

ORCHID EXPLORATION FOR THE OLDER ENTHUSIAST
The Slow Empiricist It has been almost a year since I have thought about writing an Empiricist Column. I have been busy in the field exploring and finding new sites. I have also been busy with my other interests. As I grow older it is harder to do all the things I want to do in a given day or week. This column is about setting priorities. A good orchid enthusiast knows his or her limitations and provides for them. I remember many years ago traveling with a group of fellow orchid pursuers. One of the women in the group had difficulty navigating rough terrain. She elected to stay behind so that she would not slow the progress of the others. She and I stayed together and explored the immediate territory and found many things to delight our fancy. The others saw more exotic territory but we both felt that our explorations had been just as satisfying. On another adventure, one member of the group was very uneasy about heights and pushed herself to her limit of endurance. She achieved a new milestone for her own personal accomplishment and was rewarded with new sights and new plants in the rarified atmosphere. A few years back an older gentleman marveled at the ease with which Paul Martin Brown flung himself down upon the ground to photograph an orchid. I remember him saying that in a few years it would not be so easy to get around. This did not stop this gentleman from participating in the excursion nor did it impede him from getting his photographs. It took him longer than he would have liked and he had some difficulty getting down to his quarry but he managed. Now I am plagued with aches and pains as I go about my daily life and I have trouble sitting for a long while in a car without getting out and having a stretch along the roadside or at a rest area. I still am not going to curtail my

41

Empiricist: THE OLDER ENTHUSIAST

explorations because of these failings. I have made some concessions to aging but I also have made some adjustments to my exploring patterns. I now have found that a small pillow behind my back or one under my thighs while I ride makes the trip much more comfortable. When I drive, I can adjust the power seat so it makes the journey more comfortable and if we are on a highway I can set cruise control to relax my ankle, which aches after an hour of driving. Since I have to stop more frequently to stretch out my cramped legs, I have begun to look for likely habitat to explore before I stop. That way I get to indulge in my favorite activity and I have actually found some orchids growing in new territory that just happened to look promising. The purpose of this column has been to show you that you can still derive pleasure in your orchid explorations even as ailments and the aging process interfere. By being flexible and open to other possibilities, you can still get great satisfaction from your orchid forays. Good hunting! Your Slow Empiricist

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Empiricist: THE OLDER ENTHUSIAST

NORTH AMERICAN NATIVE ORCHIDS BOOKS IN PROGRESS
a news report Following the recent publication of Wild Orchids of Florida, Brown & Folsom (2002), The Wild Orchids of Arizona and New Mexico, Coleman (2002) and The Wild Orchids of North America, north of Mexico (2003), three additional new books on the native orchids of the United States are well underway and will be published within the next year or so. From Westcliffe Publishers for Spring 2004 Wild Love Affair: Essence of Florida's Native Orchids by Connie Bransilver From the University Press of Florida: Wild Orchids of the Southeastern United States, north of Peninsular Florida by Paul Martin Brown and Stan Folsom for Fall 2004 And still in preparation: From the University Press of South Carolina: Wild Orchids of South Carolina, a popular natural history by Jim Fowler for 2005

Connie Bransilver's fine-art photographs and insightful text seamlessly blend the science of orchids with her passion and love for these most precious of all flowers. This long-awaited volume is a beautiful addition to anyone's orchid library. ISBN: 1-56579-501-6 PRICE: $40 HARDCOVER 9 x 12" 128 PAGES 120 PHOTOGRAPHS

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Siegel: AN ORCHID TREASURE Empiricist: THE OLDER ENTHUSIAST

AN UNLIKELY PLACE TO FIND AN ORCHID TREASURE
Carol Siegel It was an unlikely place to find an orchid—or an orchid club for that matter. Hot and dry, just nine miles from Death Valley Junction, the ground was so thickly covered with salt that it looked like winter snow. Fed by a vast network of underground springs, the ground bounced like foam rubber when we walked on it. On June 25, 2003, seven hardy club conservation enthusiasts braved the intense summer heat to participate in the experience of a lifetime, the orchid count of Spiranthes infernalis at Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge. (Mike Lawless, Dan Mumau, Liz Leone, John Haydukavitch, Carol Siegel, Diana Smith, and Steve Ninemire). Spiranthes infernalis is found there and nowhere else in the world. We got up at dawn and drove 90 miles to make sure that the population of 10,000 endemic orchids was safe. Invasive weeds, like the Russian knapweed (Acroptilon repens), a noxious perennial herb, probably introduced in hay from Eurasia, now covers over 500 acres where there were none in 1990. The fear is that the introduced weeds will squeeze out the rare and exotic orchid. The 22,000 acres of Meadows are protected as a national wildlife refuge because they contain a greater concentration of unique species than any other location in the United States—13 threatened and endangered species and at least 24 plants and animals found nowhere else in the world- including our orchid. It is one of the few natural desert oases in the Southwest, providing habitat for 220 species of migratory birds.

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Siegel: AN ORCHID TREASURE Empiricist: THE OLDER ENTHUSIAST

We entered through an unpaved road, dusty and deserted looking. In the distance, Crystal Reservoir, one of 40 springs, sparkled in the shimmering heat of the morning, a blue lake in the crusty earth. We met Gina Glenn of the Fish and Wildlife Service, a charming young lady who led the count. With her were several people from Kew Gardens in England, collecting seed from the unique meadow plants as part of their conservation effort. We walked a half-mile raised boardwalk following a narrow stream filled with Baltic rush, Lizard’s Tail and reeds in the midst of the arid terrain. Unexpectedly, the boardwalk ended in a pool of clear, blue-green water, Crystal Spring, with a sand floor and bright green algae. The 85 degree water, flowing at 3000 gallons a minute, was part of a vast underground water system with 30 springs seeping “fossil” water believed to have entered the water system underground thousands of years ago. At one time, the whole area was an interconnected series of lakes and springs, but the receding glaciers at the end of the ice age left Ash Meadows an isolated oasis in the middle of the desert. Swimming in the water were tiny pupfish, one of four endangered species of fish in the refuge. As we turned around to go back, we saw our first look at our orchid, sticking up like birthday candles in the ground. Spiranthes infernalis, also called the Ash Meadow’s ladies’-tresses, was considered Spiranthes romanzoffiana until 1989. Spiranthes come from two Greek words meaning “coil” and “flowers” for the coiled or spiraled flower spikes of this genus. Because of the supposed resemblance of the spirals to some hairstyles, Spiranthes are commonly called “ladies’-tresses.” Spiranthes infernalis, Ash Meadows ladies’-tresses, was named in 1989 by Charles J. Sheviak and is endemic to the alkaline, moist soils of Ash Meadows, meaning it is ONLY found there, making it very special. It is similar to other Spiranthes with many small, white, spiraling orchid flowers. In 1990, populations worldwide were estimated at between 730-1160 individuals. Until last year, global counts for species were around 1400 individuals. Surveys last year estimated 10,000 individuals and this year, happily, the survey we took part in found 13,500 plants. Our little orchid is doing okay! We were given a map and told to each take a 10 feet swath and walk the length and breadth of the area, recording orchids as we went. The morning was spent cutting a path through mesquite and ash groves and saltbush and creosote, the spiky branches crunching as we pushed our way through the brush. Crushed and crunched ourselves, we stopped for lunch, and then Gina took us to another spot, more open and accessible, looking much like the tall grasses of the African savanna. Wending our way along the small meandering
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Siegel: AN ORCHID TREASURE Empiricist: THE OLDER ENTHUSIAST

stream, we excitedly found our Spiranthes, 14 inches tall, slender and spiraled, little birthday candles. We, who live in the shadow of the architectural wonder that is Las Vegas, with its glitz and its glamour, were thrilled to see this little survivor, beating all odds by making it in this strange and exotic environment. Thrilled, too, we were, to have made this effort to save our very special native orchid.

Bibliography
Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge. US Fish and Wildlife Service, handout. Nevada National Parks and Tourist Guide-Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge http://www.americansouthwest.net/nevada/ash_meadows/wildlife_refuge.ht\

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