Orchidaceae
Piperia elegans

Elegant Rein-Orchid

Stem erect, topped with spike of flowers. Basal leaves 2–5, oblong, 2–12 in. long. Flowering stem bare below, with white or pale green flowers on top section. Flowers musky-smelling, not clove-like; long spur on back of flower is parallel to stem. Spur is strap-shaped, to 1/2 in. long, curved slightly upward at tip. Grows in dry open places in mixed and conifer forests below 1600 ft. Called rein orchid for the strap-shaped spur. Piperia transversa, royal rein orchid, also whitish, has straight spur pointing back and across stem, is sweetly clove-scented.

  • Rarity: Uncommon
  • Flowering Time: Early Summer
  • Life Cycle: Perennial
  • Height: 12--15 inches
  • Habitat: Coastal, West-Side Forest, Meadow
  • Found In: Olympic NP, Mt. Rainier NP, Wallowas, East Gorge, West Gorge, N Cascades NP
  • Native: Yes

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