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This species is accepted, and its native range is S. Canada to N. Central & E. U.S.A.
Cypripedium candidum (Photograph by P. J. Cribb, courtesy of Swiss Orchid Foundation)


In full sunlight in prairies and damp meadows, bogs and fens on limestone and marl, often along railway lines, and in sheltered ravines, limestone barrens, swamps, on the edge of thickets, on dry rocky slopes, in wet woods; sea level to 1000 m. Flowering in April toJune.

General Description

A terrestrial herb 12-38 cm tall, with stems often in clusters and with a short rhizome. Sterns erect, covered below by about three glabrous, tubular, obtuse sheaths and by leaf sheaths above. Leaves three to four (to five), suberect, often conduplicate, lanceolate or elliptic-lanceolate, acute or acuminate, 6-19 cm long, 1.5-4 cm wide, bright green, glandular-pubescent on the veins above and below, glandular-ciliate. Inflorescence one- or rarely twoflowered; peduncle slender, glandular-pubescent; bract erect, always overtopping the flower, foliaceous, erect, conduplicate, elliptic- lanceolate, acute, 3-10 cm long, densely glandular-pubescent, glandular-eiliate. Flower small, slightly fragrant, with greenish or greenish yellow sepals and petals often flushed, streaked, or spotted with purple-brown, a waxy white lip purple-spotted on the edge of the mouth and purple-streaked within, and a yellow staminode spotted with purple-red; pedicel and ovary 1.5-2.8 cm long, densely glandular-pubescent. Dorsal sepal lanceolate, acuminate, 2-3 cm long, 0.9-1.2 cm wide, undulate and somewhat twisted, glandular on outer surface; synsepallanceolate or elliptic-lanceolate, bifid at acute apex, 2-3 cm long, 0.8-0.9 cm wide, glandular on main veins. Petals spreading-deflexed at 45° to horizontal, linear-tapering, acuminate, spirally twisted, 2.5-4.5 cm long, 0.3-0.4 cm wide, pubescent at base on inner surface. Lip obovoid, 1.8-2.5 cm long, 1-1.5 cm across, silky pubescent within. Column short, 0.8-0.9 cm long; staminode slenderly stalked, concave in apical half, obovate, obtuse, 0.7-1 cm long, 0.35-0.45 cm wide.


Flowering in April toJune.


Canada (Ontario), U.S.A. (New York, Pennsylvania, NewJersey west to southern Minnesota, eastern North Dakota, Iowa, northeastern Nebraska and eastern South Dakota and south to Missouri and Kentucky).

Native to:

Alabama, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Manitoba, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Ontario, Pennsylvania, Saskatchewan, South Dakota, Wisconsin

Cypripedium candidum Muhl. ex Willd. appears in other Kew resources:

Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
Schwarz, V.T., USA 45328.000
Dryden, K. 59737.000
Perner, H., USA 60169.000
Pitcher, Canada K000363731

First published in Sp. Pl., ed. 4, 4: 142 (1805)

Accepted by

  • Govaerts, R. (1999). World Checklist of Seed Plants 3(1, 2a & 2b): 1-1532. MIM, Deurne.
  • Govaerts, R. (2003). World Checklist of Monocotyledons Database in ACCESS: 1-71827. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  • Herkert, J.R. & Ebinger, J.E. (eds.) (2002). Endangered and Threatened Species of Illinois: status and distribution 1: 1-161. Endangered species protection board, Springfield, Illinois.



  • von Willdenow, C.L. Original description of Cypripedium candidum. 4, (1805).

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Herbarium Catalogue Specimens
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Kew Backbone Distributions
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. Published on the Internet at and
© Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.

Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. Published on the Internet at and
© Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.