Hooded Ladies' Tresses
Spiranthes romanzoffiana Cham.
Family: Orchidaceae, Orchid
Genus: Spiranthes
Other names: hooded ladiestresses
Nomenclature: romanzoffiana = Roman
Nativity / Invasiveness: Montana native plant
No edibility data
No medicinal data

General: erect perennial, hairless,10-40 cm tall, from clusters of enlarged, fleshy roots.

Leaves: alternate, usually several, near the base of the stem, linear to narrowly oblong, mostly 8-20 cm long and 5-10 mm broad, abruptly changing upward to short, sheathing, lanceolate bracts.

Flowers: white or cream to greenish-white, tubular, sweet-scented, many in 1 to 4 spiralling vertical rows in a dense spike, 3-12 cm long. Bracts lance-shaped, 10-20 mm long, whitish or pale green. Sepals sticky-short-hairy, the upper one and the petals joined into a curved tubular hood 7-12 mm long, lower sepals often with bent back tips. Lip sharply curved backward, about as long as the sepals, the basal half concave, with erect edges, tapered to a rounded tip. July-August.

Fruits: erect capsules, up to 10 mm long, many-seeded.


Moist to swampy areas, foothills to montane zone, in w. and c. parts of MT. Also from AK to Newfoundland, s. to CA, AZ, NM, NE, and e. to IA and NY.
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