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Goodyera pubescens

downy rattlesnake plantain add to wishlist

Plant types and subtypes: SALE, Perennials, Evergreens, Ground Orchids

Light Requirements: part-shade, shade

Water Use: low, medium

Soil Moisture: dry, moist

Soil Description: rich, loam, clay, sand

Height: 8"-16"

Bloom Time: May, June, July, August, September

Bloom Color: white

Leaf Color: green, white, multi-color

Hardiness Zone: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

Additional Tags: evergreen, rare, shade garden plant, woodland plant

Goodyera pubescens (downy rattlesnake plantain)
  • Goodyera pubescens (downy rattlesnake plantain)
  • Goodyera pubescens (downy rattlesnake plantain)
  • Goodyera pubescens (downy rattlesnake plantain)
  • Goodyera pubescens (downy rattlesnake plantain)

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Description

Goodyera pubescens

Also known as:

downy rattlesnake plantain

,

rattlesnake plantain

,

downy rattlesnake orchid

Scientific Synonyms:

Peramium pubescens

Description

A member of the Orchid family, the evergreen, oval, basal leaves of Goodyera pubescens are unusual and striking. As the common name suggests, they resemble those of the plantain, while the heavy, white veining is reminiscent of rattlesnake skin. White, snapdragon-like flowers appear tightly on a single, 6" to 16" hairy spike.

Cultivation

Found in moist, well-drained wooded areas, it will tolerate drier conditions so long as it is protected from heat. Under ideal conditions, it will slowly spread by means of its rhizomes. Due to the native range of this ground orchid, which extends from Florida to Canada, bloom time will vary greatly: as early as May in the South and as late as September in the North. Zones 4-8

Propagation

Best left undisturbed, rooting offshoots may be separated from mature plants. Difficult to propagate from seed.

Additional Notes

Unfortunately, the attractive leaves have been collected in the wild for use in floral arrangements much to the detriment of native populations.

Native Range & Classification

Recorded County Distribution: USDA data

Native Range:
AL, AR, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, IA, IL, IN, KY, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MS, NC, NH, NJ, NY, OH, OK, PA, RI, SC, TN, VA, VT, WI, WV

USDA Endangered Status:

  • Endangered: FL
  • Exploitably Vulnerable: NY

Classification

Kingdom Plantae Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Liliopsida Monocotyledons
Subclass Liliidae
Order Orchidales
Family Orchidaceae Orchid family
Genus Goodyera rattlesnake plantain
Species Goodyera pubescens downy rattlesnake plantain