Malaxis monophyllos var. brachypoda (White Adder's Mouth) - photos and description





Malaxis monophyllos var. brachypoda

Ovaries swollen, flowers nearly spent.

General: Tiny native orchid with a single, simple stem, and having a single, clasping, basal leaf. Plant is glabrous.

Flowers: Tiny flowers grow in a slender raceme. The flowers are white to yellow-green in colour. We measured a flower at 5 mm long and only 2 mm wide. Raceme was measured at 4.5 cm long.

Inflorescence is a very narrow spike, the spike growing for about 1/2 the length of the stem. Flowers tiny, are a pale yellowish-white, the lip broadly triangular, the lateral petals and sepals the same colour as the lip. The lateral petals threadlike and swept backwards, the dorsal petal linear in shape, erect above the lip, the lateral sepals narrowly triangular grow on either side of the lip. I’ve measured flowers to 5 mm long. 

Leaves: The single basal leaf is elliptical to oval in shape. We measured a leaf at 45 mm long and 28 mm wide.

Height: Height listed in Budd's Flora to 20 cm, we measured plants to 11 cm tall.

Habitat: Grows on sphagnum moss in moist, cool, shady sites in the boreal forest.

Abundance: Rare, ranked as an S3 (as of 2021) by the Saskatchewan Conservation Data Centre, very rare in our experience.

Origin: Native.

When and where photographed: These photos were taken in late June and early July in boreal forest in central Saskatchewan.