Platanthera huronensis - Green Bog Orchid

Phylum: Magnoliophyta - Class: Liliopsida - Order: Orchidales - Family: Orchidaceae

Green Bog Orchid

Above: A massive Green Bog Orchid plant growing on the roadside in early July in Rocky Mountain National Park

The Green Bog Orchid is widespread throughout the Rocky Mountains area of North America, but unlike other Platanthera species which grow in damp, riverside meadows at lower elevations, this species can be found at very high altitudes - up to around 12,000 feet.

Closeup of flowers of Green Bog Orchid - Platanthera huronensis

In late June and early July this orchid flowers in vast numbers. It often occurs in the open on rocky slopes and on roadside verges. Although plants in more sheltered areas are smaller, the ones growing in the open can be up to 70 cm in height.

The plant is very robust and is easily identified from other Platanthera species in the region by its size and overall green colouring - even the flowers are an unrelenting green. The stems are very densely packed with flowers, and up to 75 individual flowers can occur on a single plant.

Large group of Green Bog Orchid - Platanthera huronensis

Platanthera huronensis, Rocky Mountain National Park

The specimens shown on this page where photographed in Rocky Mountain National Park in early July very close to the Alpine Ridge Visitor Centre, which is about 13,000 feet above sea level.


The genus name Platanthera comes from Greek and means 'broad or wide anther', referring to the wide separation of the bases of the two pollinia in the Lesser Butterfly Orchid, which is the type species of the genus. (Not all Platanthera species display this charcter, however.) The specific epithet huronensis means 'of Lake Huron'..

Sue Parker's latest ebook is a revised and enlarged edition of Wild Orchids in The Burren. Full details here...

Buy it for just £5.95 on Amazon...

Sue Parker's new ebook is a comprehensive and fully revised edition of her acclaimed field guide to the Wild Orchids of Wales. Full details here...

Buy it for just £5.95 on Amazon...

Wild Orchids of the Algarve, how, when and where to find them

Sue Parker's 5-star acclaimed field guide to the Wild Orchids of the Algarve is now available as an ebook. Full details here...

Buy it for just £5.95 on Amazon...

Please Help Us: If you have found this information interesting and useful, please consider helping to keep First Nature online by making a small donation towards the web hosting and internet costs.

Any donations over and above the essential running costs will help support the conservation work of Plantlife, the Rivers Trust and charitable botanic gardens - as do author royalties and publisher proceeds from books by Pat and Sue.

© 1995 - 2024 First Nature: a not-for-profit volunteer-run resource

Please help to keep this free resource online...

Terms of use - Privacy policy - Disable cookies - Links policy