Mt Cuba Center
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Galearis spectabilis

Native Plants

Showy Orchis

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Showy Orchis is an elegant small orchid with helmet shaped or hooded white and lavender to pink flowers on a short stem 6-10” tall that begins flowering in early May and is uncommon in the garden.  In spring it produces two oval-shaped, fleshy, basal leaves slowly developing offsets over many years. Showy orchis thrives in humus rich, well-drained deciduous woodland gardens in a range of soil pH from neutral to acidic. This diminutive garden gem is very slow growing, dislikes disturbance, and is best grown in low competitions sites. It makes a nice companion with spring ephemerals such as Anemone acutiloba, Thalictrum thalictroides, Claytonia virginica, Trillium grandiflorum, and Cardamine diphylla.

More Details

  • Plant Type
  • Sun/Shade Conditions
    partial-shade, shade 
  • Foliage Character
  • Soil Moisture
  • Flowering Period
  • Soil PH
    acidic, adaptable 
  • Flower Color
    lavender, pink, white 
  • Summer Foliage Color
  • Other Scientific Names

    Orchis spectabilis