Ash Meadows Ladies'-tresses / Center For Plant Conservation
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Plant Profile

Ash Meadows Ladies'-tresses (Spiranthes infernalis)

Spiranthes infernalis in flower. Photo by Steve Blackwell.

Photo Credit: Steve Blackwell
  • Global Rank: G2 - Imperiled
  • Legal Status: N/A
  • Family: Orchidaceae
  • State: NV
  • Nature Serve ID: 141632
  • Lifeform: Forb/herb
  • Categories of Interest: Orchids
  • Date Inducted in National Collection: 10/26/2022

Spiranthes infernalis, the Ash Meadows ladies' tresses, is endemic to Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge in Nevada. Lying just to the east of Death Valley National Park, the Ash Meadows ladies' tresses grows in extremely hot conditions in perennial springs within the refuge. Each plant can produce 2-15 inflorescences with small white flowers and grows from 6 to 16 inches tall, typically flowering in June and July and setting seed in July and August. Infernalis is latin for \"from hell\" which is appropriate given the harsh, hot conditions these plants grow in. This species is being used to train scent detection dogs to find rare terrestrial orchids in the wild.

Where is Ash Meadows Ladies'-tresses (Spiranthes infernalis) located in the wild?

States & Provinces:

Ash Meadows Ladies'-tresses can be found in Nevada

Which CPC Partners conserve Ash Meadows Ladies'-tresses (Spiranthes infernalis)?

CPC's Plant Sponsorship Program provides long term stewardship of rare plants in our National Collection. We are so grateful for all our donors who have made the Plant Sponsorship Program so successful. We are in the process of acknowledging all our wonderful plant sponsorship donors on our website. This is a work in progress and will be updated regularly.

Conservation Actions

Katie Heineman
  • 02/28/2023
  • Seed Collection Orthodox Seed Banking

California Botanic Garden made a conservation seed collection on BLM land in Nevada.

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Taxon Spiranthes infernalis
Authority Sheviak
Family Orchidaceae
CPC Number 12480
ITIS 505341
Duration Perennial
Common Names Ash Meadows Ladies'-tresses
Associated Scientific Names Spiranthes infernalis
State Rank
State State Rank
Nevada S1
Ecological Relationships


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