Rattlesnake Plantain – Goodyera oblongifolia

Orchid Family – Orchidaceae

Actual flower size: ¼ inch across

Actual flower size: ¼ inch across

Plant Description: Rattlesnake Plantain is an evergreen perennial which often forms patches of plants. Small greenish-white flowers are in a scattered spike along one side of the single, 8 to 18 inch stem. The leaves are all basal and lie flat on the ground. They are dark green, 1 to 4 inches long, with a dull white line along the mid-line. Sometimes all the veins are outlined; other times none are.

Flower Description: The upper 2 petals and one of the sepals form a hood over the lower lip. The lateral two sepals are about .4 inches long and bend outward. The resulting tubular, snout-like flowers tend to all face in the same direction, creating a mostly one-sided stem.

Ecology: Rattlesnake Plantain grows in shady, rich humus soil among the mosses in forests at low to mid elevations.

Rattlesnake Plantain Photo Gallery

Photo information: #5782, #5784, and #5865 were taken on September 7, 2002 on the Mt Catherine Trail, I-90 exit 54, Hyak, WA; #0092 was taken on July 24, 2003 on the Granite Mt. Trail, I-90 exit 47, Snoqualmie Pass;  #3222 was taken on May 14, 2005 on the Dog Mt. Trail, Columbia Gorge, Hwy 14, Carson, WA; #9442 and #9445 were taken on August 7, 2007 in Donna’s Garden.