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Orchidaceae: Cypripedium parviflorum Salisbury
(yellow lady's-slipper)

Recently used synonym: Cypripedium calceolus var. pubescens (Willd.) Correll

The yellow lady's-slipper can grow up to 80 cm tall. This bright yellow orchid grows in a variety of habitats but is particularly well suited to limestone areas. The lip forms a pouch bearing reddish to brown spots around the rim of the opening. flowerEach flower is subtended by a large leaf like bract. Sepals and petals are greenish brown with the narrow petals being strongly spiralled. Leaves are elliptic, ribbed and pubescent (hairy). Two varieties are cited for Nova Scotia: the larger green spiralled var. pubsecens and the smaller dark spiralled var. parviflorum.1,2 However, the taxonomic status of these varieties is unclear and under review. 3 Carl Munden comments that var. parviflorum is found in wet places, has a single flower and sweet fragrance, while var. pubescens is always in dry gypsum areas, may have more than one blossom and is scentless, that the two types can be found together but that "the vast majority are intermediates and have characeristics of both." Plants flower late May to July depending on habitat. The species is distributed from Newfoundland and Quebec south to Georgia and Alabama, the Yukon and British Columbia and Oregon as well as south through the western mountains to Arizona and New Mexico.
Sources | Notes & Refs | Selected Web Resources | Line Drawing

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June 7 - 10, 2006. Hants County: Gypsum Mines. Photographer: Wayne Garland.
Yellow Lady's-slipper
Yellow Lady's-slipper
Yellow Lady's-slipper

Selected Web Resources

Notes & References

  1. Zinck, M. 1998. Roland's flora of Nova Scotia. Nova Scotia Museum and Nimbus Publishing, Halifax, Nova Scotia.
  2. Munden, C. 1999. Native orchids of Nova Scotia. A field guide. University College of Cape Breton Press inc.
  3. Flora of North America: Cypripedium parviflorum FNA Vol. 26 Page 504. [Accessed 2 Dec. 2007]