Platanthera limosa Lindl.

Thurber's Bog Orchid

Facts About

Accepted Synonyms: Habenaria limosa, Limnorchis thurberi

Platanthera limosa, or Thurber's Bog Orchid, is widely distributed in Mexico, but north of the border is found only in Arizona and New Mexico. This orchid's height typically ranges from 20-100 cm, but may exceed 1.5 meters in Mexico. Robust plants may have up to 200 green to yellowish green flowers with leaves scattered up the stem. The long, slender spur, small narrow column and the jagged callus on the yellow-green labellum distinguish this orchid from other species in the area. This orchid prefers moist areas in mixed forests at higher elevations, usually near streams or at seeps.

Platanthera limosa is apparently secure across its limited distribution with populations growing in nearly inaccessible habitat or protected within designated wilderness areas.


Pollinator information for this orchid has not been reported.

Ecosystem Type

Forests, marshes, seeps, stream bank


Leaf arrangement:
  • basal
  • stem
Number of leaves on stem:
  • five
  • six
  • seven or more
Labellum outline:
the labellum is simple
Main color of labellum:
  • green to brown
  • yellow
Nectar spur:
Inflorescence type:
the inflorescence is a spike
Labellum characteristics:
the labellum is simple
Labellum length:
2.5–8 mm
Sepal length:
Plant height:
30–165 cm
Show All Characteristics

Native to North America


North American Conservation Status & Distribution

Conservation Status

Select a location to view conservation status:

Conservation and Wetland Status
Global Rank Apparently Secure
US Status N/A
Canadian Status N/A

North America Distribution

Adapted from USDA data