Thursday, August 4, 2011

Piperia transversa at Washington Park

On a previous outing to Washington Park in the spring we had seen the glossy leaves of a Piperia growing along the trails.  It was tentatively identified at that time as Piperia candida (Slender White Piperia).  I made a mental note of the locations and determined that I would go back later in the summer to see the plants in flower.

I finally made the trip on July 18th and found the plants but discovered that they were not Piperia candida, but Piperia transversa, the Flat-spurred Piperia, a species I had not seen before.  The leaves were gone now, as is common with the Piperias, but there were many more plants than I remembered, all in flower.

It was quite a windy day, but I was able to get some decent photos both of the plants and of their habitat.  They were growing in rather bright, dry, but mossy areas with a light tree cover and their white and green flowers made then very visible, though their spikes were less than a foot tall, and the flowers quite tiny.


  1. these are not theones down on greenpoint I see.

    I have a mystery one from today I will post on flicker. Has me confused for id, so I came here to see itf you list it.

  2. Not a Piperia but the Pad-leaved Orchis, Platanthera orbiculata, a very nice find, though I'm a bit confused by the reference to six inch plants - ordinarily this grows to about two feet, but the flowers can't be anything else.