Platanthera cristata (Michx.) Lindl. 1835

Photos by Jim Fowler and his P-Base Orchid North American Orchid Website

Flower Closeup

Photo by Nicholas Plummer

Plant in situ

Photo by Zachary Bradford

Comparison drawing of P ciliaris [a], P chapmani [b] and P cristata [c]

Drawing by © Folsom and The AMO Herbaria Website


Common Name or Meaning The Combed Platanthera - The Yellow Crested Orchid

Flower Size .2 to .3" [5 to 7 mm]

Found in Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas, Louisiana and Texas in open wet meadows, roadside ditches and seeps and pinewoods as a large sized, cold growing terrestrial with 2 to 4, glossy green, cauline, lanceolate, keeled, basally clasping leaves that are rapidly reduced to bracts towards the inflorescence that blooms in the late spring through late fall on a terminal, erect, racemose, to 32" [to 80 cm] long, loosely to densely, 30 to 80 flowered inflorescence with green, lanceolate, slightly shorter than the ovary floral bracts and carrying fragrant flowers

Synonyms Blephariglottis cristata (Michx.) Raf. 1836; Habenaria cristata (Michx.) R. Br. 1813; *Orchis cristata Michx. 1803; Platanthera cristata f. straminea P.M.Br. 1995

References Studies in the Family Orchidaceae Vol 4 Ames 1910 as Habenaria cristata; Studies in the Family Orchidaceae Vol 4 Ames 1910 as Habenaria cristata; Die Orchideen Schlechter 1915; Native Orchids of North America Correll 1950 as Habenaria cristata drawing fide; Drawings of Florida Orchids Blanche Ames 1959 as Habenaria cristata drawing fide; Encyclopedia of Cultivated Orchids Hawkes 1965; The Native Orchids of Florida Luer 1972 drawing/photos fide; The Native Orchids of the United States and Canada Luer 1975 drawing/photos fide; ORQUIDEA (Méx.) 9(2): 1984 drawing/photo fide; Field Guide to the Orchids of North America Williams 1983; Schlechteriana Vol 4 No 4 1993; Rudolf Schlechter Die Orchideen Band 1C lieferung 40 pg 2492 - 2564 Brieger 2000 drawing good; Wild Orchids of the SE USA P M Brown 2004; AOS Bulletin Vol 73 No 7 2004 photo fide;