Tuesday, August 2, 2011
Platanthera stricta along the North Cascades Highway
On Monday, July 25th we traveled the North Cascades Highway through North Cascades National Park by way of bringin our son back to the Spokane area. We made a very slow trip through the mountains stopping often for pictures, but only saw two orchids, Platanthera dilatata var. dilatata, the Bog Candle, and Platanthera stricta, the Slender Bog Orchis.
The later species seemed to be everywhere from above Ross Dam down to the bottom of the pass on the east side of the mountains. It is distinguished by its narrow straight lip (hence the name stricta), and it inflated spur. It is not the most striking species, but when found in abundance its tall straight spikes of small flowers are very noticeable. These are some of the pictures we took.