Rattlesnake Plantain (orchid)

Also called: Downy rattlesnake plantain and Jewel Orchid
Scientific Name: Goodyera Oblongifolia

Seen on hike 227 to Romana Falls 8/20/13

Rattlesnake-plantains get their name from their broad, rounded leaves, which are similar in shape to those of the a common lawn weed, plantain. They are not actually plantains; they are orchids.

Rattlesnake Plantain, is an evergreen terrestrial species with variegated, dark green, basal, ovate leaves. The variegation is in the form of a densely-reticulated network of veins that are a much lighter green than the rest of the leaf tissue.

It produces a spike-like raceme of white or greenish-white flowers.

Rattlesnake Plantain is a creeping plant that divides on the ground surface and sends out short stolons

Rattlesnake plantain is an orchid, and orchids often are difficult to identify because of their large number of species, typically small flowers, and unusual flower anatomy.

Another good field mark for flowers in the orchid genus Goodyera: Each blossom's side or lateral sepals spread out like ears or wings.

In the Eastern United States there are three similar rattlesnake plantain species -- but in Oregon there's just the Western Rattlesnake Plantain, Goodyera Oblongifolia .

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