Species Name Spiranthes delitescens
Synonyms Spiranthes delitescens |
Common Name Canelo Hills ladie's tresses | Madrean ladies tresses | Madrean ladies's tresses | reclusive lady's tresses | delightful ladiestresses | Canelo Hills ladies'-tresses |
CPC Number 13510
Natures Serve Global Rank G1
Global Rank Review Date 8/10/2014
Federal Listing Status LE
Description Spiranthes delitescens is a slender, erect terrestrial orchid that can grow up to 50 cm in height. Plants have five to ten slender, grass-like leaves which grow basally on the stem. Roots are fleshy and swollen, about 5 mm in diameter. A twisted spike inflorescence may contain up to 40 white flowers and blooms in July. These orchids are generally short-lived, with an average longevity of 3 to 4 years. During severe drought, plants return to the heterotrophic condition. There is anecdotal evidence that this species may actually require disturbance in order to become established. Since the seeds of orchids are without endosperm (stored nutrients) they need the perfect conditions for germination. Germination of such seeds is challenging, and must be conducted under sterile conditions on an agar media, to eliminate potential contamination and competition with fungal growth. However, because orchid seeds have no endosperm, they need mycorrhizae, soil-inhabiting fungi, to germinate. Mycorrhizae encourage germination by penetrating the orchid's seed coat and bringing water and nutrients to the embryo.