Orchidaceae / Orchid
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© Daniel Reed
The name Isotria means "equal" (isos) and "three" (treis) and refers to the sepals. Pogonia means "bearded" referring to the lip of the flower. The specific name medeoloides comes from the leaves being similar to Indian Cucumber, Medeola virginiana.
Similar Species: Large Whorled Pogonia,
AKA Purple Fiveleaf Orchid (Isotria verticillata) is much more common. The leaves point up at the time of flowering
and the stem is purplish, the sepals are proportionally longer
One of the best general guides to wildflowers of the North Eastern and North Central United States. Newcomb's key is an excellent, simple method for identifying plants. Newcomb has drawings for almost every plant mentioned that are excellent aids to identifying the species. Though only the more common plants are covered this is often the first book I pick up when trying to identify a wildflower.
This is perhaps the best of many field guides covering this region. Featuring 446 excellent color photographs (located with the text) and mentioning as similar to those illustrated are another 800 or so species for a total coverage of over 1,200 species. The start of each family section includes line drawings of some of the species showing important features. The text includes the usual description, bloom season, range, habitat and additionally includes information such as medical uses and lore and how the species was named. This is the official field guide of the Tennessee Native Plant Society.
Angiosperms / Flowering Plants
Monocots / One Seed Leaf