Wild Florida Photo
Nature Photography by Paul Rebmann
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YELLOW FRINGED ORCHID
ORANGE FRINGED ORCHIS
Threatened Florida species
A frequent terrestrial orchid of pine flatwoods, open, wet meadows, roadside ditches, seeps and bogs throughout much of central and north Florida. Yellow fringed orchid ranges throughout the eastern United States, extending west into Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Illinois and Michigan, plus Ontario.
Platanthera ciliaris grows to over a meter tall with 30 to 75 yellow to orange flowers in a showy terminal raceme. The flowers have deeply fringed lips and a long spur, about the length of the pedicel. Leaves are cauline and lanceolate, from 5-30 cm (2-12 in.) long and 1-5 cm (3/8-2 in.) wide.
Platanthera species are distinguished from the genus Habenaria by the lack of basal leaves. Several species of Platanthera having small tubercles on either side of the column have recently been reclassified to the genus Gymnadeniopis.