Northern Ontario Plant Database
Pogonia ophioglossoides (L.) KerGawl.
En: rose pogonia
Orchidaceae (Orchid Family)
General: A perennial forb, to 60 cm tall, glabrous, growing from slender, horizontal roots, to 80 cm long, sending up erect shoots at wide intervals. Often occurring with Calopogon tuberosus (swamp pink) and Arethusa bulbosa (dragon’s mouth) in Sphagnum bogs and fens. The rose pogonia gets its name from the Greek pogon, meaning beard, describing the appearance of the lower lip (labellum).
Leaves: The solitary leaf measures up to 12 cm long and 3 cm wide and is borne toward the middle of the stem. The blade is elliptic, sheathing at the base, with an acute apex and entire margins. The leaf is well developed during the blooming period.
Flowers: Terminal, solitary or occasionally 2-flowered, subtended by a lanceolate, leaflike (foliaceous) bract. Tepals of various shades of pink, rarely white; elliptic, to 2.5 cm long and 1cm wide. The spatulate lip (labellum) is streaked with magenta and bears 3 rows of fleshy yellow bristles on the upper surface. Tepal margins are entire, with the exception of the lip, which has a lacerate apical margin. Flowering period is June to July.
Fruit: Erect, ellipisoid capsules, brown in colour; the minute seeds are released in September.
Habitat and Range: Sphagnum bogs and fens. Native to eastern North America and widely distributed in Ontario to about 50EN.
Internet Images: The Pogonia ophioglossoides page from University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point.
– written by Derek Goertz
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