Search Field Guide
Advanced Search
MT Gov Logo
Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Alaska Rein Orchid - Piperia unalascensis
Other Names:  Habenaria unalascensis

Native Species

Global Rank: G5
State Rank: S4

Agency Status
USFWS:
USFS:
BLM:
MNPS Threat Rank:
C-value: 6

External Links






 
General Description
Stems 20–60 cm. Leaves oblong to oblanceolate, 6–20 cm long. Inflorescence of well-separated flowers, 6–25 cm long; bracts 2–6 mm long. Flowers yellowish-green; sepals 2–4 mm long; lip petal 2–3 mm long; spur clavate, 3–4 mm long. Capsule 5–8 mm long (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Diagnostic Characteristics
Alaska Rein Orchid - Piperia unalascensis
*Inflorescence: Flowers are well-separated. Flowers do not spiral on the stalk.
*Flowers: Petals and sepals are yellow-greenish.
*Lip petal: Has a short spur, clavate (club-shaped), 3-5 mm long. The spur is about as long as the lip petal.
*Leaves: Prostrate, but not appressed to the ground. Often withering by the time pollination occurs.

Dense Flower Rein Orchid - Piperia elongata, SOC
*Inflorescence: Flowers are sparse to dense, tending to overlap yet not be crowded. Flowers do not spiral on the stalk.
*Flowers: Petals and sepals are yellow-green to green.
*Lip petal: Has a long, slender spur, weakly curved spur, 6-15 mm long. The spur is more than twice as long as the lip petal.
*Leaves: Prostrate, but not appressed to the ground. Often withering by the time pollination occurs.

Hillside Rein Orchid - Piperia elegans
*Inflorescence: Flowers are crowded. Flowers do not spiral on the stalk.
*Flowers: Petals are white with green sepals.
*Lip petal: Has a long, slender spur, weakly curved spur, 8-12 mm long. The spur is more than twice as long as the lip petal.
*Leaves: Prostrate, but not appressed to the ground. Often withering by the time pollination occurs.

Bog Orchids - Platanthera species
*Flowers: Arranged in a spike-like raceme, but do not spiral around the stalk.
*Lip petal: Forms a downward pointing spur.
*Leaves: Either near the plant's base (basal) or leafy along entire stem (cauline). If basal than either appressed to the ground or only on the lower stem (lacking upper stem leaves). If cauline then leaves are sheathing, alternately-arranged, and may whither by the time pollination occurs.

Ladies'-tresses - Spiranthes species
*Flowers: Arranged in a spike and spiral on the stalk to form 3- or 4- ranks/columns.
*Lip petal: Lacks a spur.
*Leaves: Relatively long and narrow. Largest at the base, becoming progressively smaller towards the inflorescence. Leaves usually do not whither by the time pollination occurs.

Species Range
Present
 


Range Comments
AK to QC south to CA, UT, NM and SD (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 91

(Click on the following maps and charts to see full sized version) Map Help and Descriptions
Relative Density

Recency

 

(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)



Habitat
Moist to more often dry forest, thickets, stream banks; valleys, montane (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

References
  • Additional ReferencesLegend:   View Online Publication
    Do you know of a citation we're missing?
    • Lesica, P., M.T. Lavin, and P.F. Stickney. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. Fort Worth, TX: BRIT Press. viii + 771 p.
    • Simanonok, M. 2018. Plant-pollinator network assembly after wildfire. Ph.D. Dissertation. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 123 p.
  • Web Search Engines for Articles on "Alaska Rein Orchid"
Login Logout
Citation for data on this website:
Alaska Rein Orchid — Piperia unalascensis.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from