Genus: Cephalanthera

No common name

Cephalanthera is a small, relatively primitive genus of terrestrial orchids, widespread in Eurasia, with a single species native to North America. These orchids have fleshy roots scattered along a slender rhizome. The leaves are alternate or may be reduced to sheathing bracts that surround the stem. The inflorescence is a solitary spike with floral bracts and the flowers are resupinate, with the dorsal sepal and lateral petals forming a hood over the column. The lobed labellum is divided by a median constriction with fleshy ridges. Cephalanthera austiniae, the only member of the genus native to North America, is leafless, snow white and myco-heterotrophic.

North American Species in this Genus