Cypripedium candidum (Small White Lady's Slipper) - photos and description



Cypripedium candidum


Clump of 5 flowering stems, along with yellow flowering Hypoxis hirsuta.


15 cm ruler for scale. 




General: Small orchid often growing in dense clumps, native to moist prairies. Considered extirpated from Saskatchewan.

Flowers: Flowers are solitary, having a showy, inflated lower lip (slipper). The lip is white in colour with purple-red spots. We measured a lip at 18 mm long. Lateral petals and sepals are green in colour with dark brown stripes. The lateral petals are twisted.

Leaves: Leaves are alternate, cauline, sessile, elliptical to ovate, leaf highlighted in photo above was 8.5 cm long by 2 cm wide (leaf not flattened when measuring width). Leaves are puberulent with glandular hairs.

Height: Budd's Flora lists the height to 25 cm. We measured plants to 25 cm tall, however most plants were much shorter - only 10 to 15 cm in height.

Habitat: Moist meadows.

Abundance: Has been assigned a ranking of S1 (= extremely rare) by the Saskatchewan Conservation Data Centre. The plant was collected in Saskatchewan in 1895 near Indian Head, about 70 km east of our home in Regina, SK.

Origin: Native.

When and where photographed: Photos taken June 6th, moist meadow, tall grass prairie, southern Manitoba.