Native Orchids of Washington State

There are 41 Native Orchids in Washington State. The purpose of this site it to educate and promote conservation of Washington States Native Orchids. Thoughtless collectors and loss of habitat have made many orchids rare, endangered or even extinct.

Many orchids are protected, so don't dig them up. All orchids require special conditions of shade, moisture and soil that cannot be duplicated outside of their habitat. Many orchids in the Pacific Northwest, grows in partnership with a fungus in the soil that shares nutrients taken from the roots of trees and the dying debris on the forest floor. Some orchid when transplanted tend to die from root suffocation resulting from the new soil compaction. For these reasons, they won't grow if dug up and taken home.

People unknowingly pick orchids which harms native orchid populations in two ways. Picking an orchid flower prevents the orchid from producing seeds and reproducing themselves. Also, picking an orchid flower can damage the orchids root system this could lead to the death of the orchid plant. For these reasons, please don't pick orchid flowers.

People unknowingly crowd around to view or take pictures of the orchid which compacts the soil. The soil compaction can be to the point that the orchid will suffocate and no longer grow. Careless feet can trample the surrounding seedlings or non-blooming plants. So, please stay well away, use only established trails and a long-range lens to get your pictures.

Some native orchids have been successfully propagated and can be purchased commercially. So, take a picture of the native orchids, it will last longer and buy them from a nursery that propagated them. Nurseries that grow native orchids:

Calypso bulbosa var. americana or Pacific or Eastern Fairy Slipper

Calypso bulbosa var. occidentalis or Pacific or Western Fairy Slipper

Cephalanthera austiniae or Phantom Orchid

Coeloglossum viride var. virescens or American Frog Orchid

Corallorhiza maculata var. maculata or Spotted Coralroot

Corallorhiza maculata var. occidentalis or Western Spotted Coralroot

Corallorhiza maculata var. ozettensis or Ozette Coralroot

Corallorhiza mertensiana or Western Coralroot

Corallorhiza striata var. striata or Striped Coralroot

Corallorhiza striata var. vreelandii or Vreeland's Striped Coralroot

Corallorhiza trifida or Northern Coralroot

Cypripedium fasciculatum or Cluster Lady's Slipper

Cypripedium montanum or Mountain Lady's Slipper

Cypripedium parviflorum var. makasin or Northern Small Yellow Lady's Slipper

Cypripedium parviflorum var. pubescens or Large Yellow Lady's Slipper

Epipactis gigantea or Stream Orchid

Epipactis helleborine or Broad-Leaved Helleborine

Goodyera oblongifolia or Menzies' Rattlesnake Plantain

Liparis loeselii or Loesel's Twayblade

Listera banksiana or syn. Listera caurina or Northwestern Twayblade

Listera borealis or Northern Twayblade

Listera convallarioides or Broad-Leaved Twayblade

Listera cordata var. nephrophylla or Western Heartleaf Twayblade

Piperia candida or Slender White Piperia

Piperia elegans subsp. elegans or Elegant Piperia

Piperia elongata or Wood Rein-Orchid

Piperia transversa or Flat-Spurred Piperia

Piperia unalascensis or Alaskan Piperia

Platanthera aquilonis or Northern Green Bog-Orchid

Platanthera chorisiana or Chamisso's Orchid

Platanthera dilatata var. albiflora or White Bog-Orchid

Platanthera dilatata var. dilatata or Tall White Bog-Orchid

Platanthera dilatata var. leucostachys or Fragrant Bog-Orchid

Platanthera huronensis or Green Bog-Orchid

Platanthera obusata subsp. obtusata or Blunt-leaf Rein-Orchid

Platanthera orbiculata or Large Round-Leaved Orchid

Platanthera sparsiflora or Few-Flowered Rein-Orchid

Platanthera stricta or Slender Bog-Orchid

Spiranthes diluvialis or Ute Ladies' Tresses

Spiranthes porrifolia or Western Ladies' Tresses

Spiranthes romanzoffiana or Hooded Ladies' Tresses