Before I began Holdfast I worked at a native plant nursery. I loved it. Western North Carolina has so many plant treasures, large and small. Every month I am going to post a new plant we discover on our adventures. This is one of my late summer favorites. Commonly known as Lady's Tresses, this small orchid blooms in late summer and early fall in Western North Carolina. It is barely noticeable most of the year. It is commonly found in swamps, meadows, wet roadsides, and bogs. We saw this one on our canoe trip to Wolf Creek Lake.
"Many shade flowers are lacking in fragrance, and lady ’s tresses happily fills that void. Some gardeners describe the scent as vanilla spiked with jasmine, reminiscent of a lilac.
Lady’s tresses is a threatened or endangered native wildflower in some states, and gardeners shouldn’t collect species from the wild. Instead, purchase specimens from reputable nurseries."