This wide ranging species is found across Alaska and Canada, in the northern and western United States and even in Great Britain and Ireland. It is the most commonly-met Spiranthes in the Pacific Northwest. It is somewhat variable in coloration but is unlike any other species in this genus.
The plants are said to grow as tall as 50 cm, but where we have found them, at higher elevations, they have always been very short, less than 20 cm. The plants usually has quite a few leaves which are found on the lower part of the stem and which persist through flowering.
The flowers are a beautiful off-white color and have a sparkling texture, and are arranged in spiralling rows, like all the Spiranthes, around the flower stem. The plant likes wet, open areas. At Mount Adams, for example, we found it growing in a very wet meadow among short grasses.