Sotoa confusa (Garay) Salazar

Confusing Ladies' Tresses

Facts About

Accepted Synonyms: Deiregyne confusa, Schiedeella confusa, Spiranthes confusa

Sotoa confusa, the Confusing Ladies' Tresses, is widespread in eastern Mexico but had not been seen in Texas for 75 years until it was rediscovered in the Chisos Mountains. This orchid has a leafless spike that bears up to 15 pink flowers with green stripes. The dorsal sepal and two petals form a hood over the green-veined pink lip. The sepals of S. confusa have swollen hairs which distinguish this orchid from similar species. This orchid grows in a variety of habitats in semi-arid regions, including scrub thickets, seasonally dry forests and wastelands.

Sotoa confusa is considered globally vulnerable although its conservation status has not been determined in Texas.


This orchid is pollinated by Bombus species. A large queen has been documented visiting the flowers in search of nectar. The queen grabbed the lateral sepals and pushed its head down into the flower and viscidia and pollinaria were extracted in the process.

Ecosystem Type

Grassland, shrublands or thickets


Leaf arrangement:
Form of the labellum:
the labellum is not pouch-like
Labellum outline:
the labellum is simple
Main color of labellum:
  • pink to red
  • white
Nectar spur:
Inflorescence type:
the inflorescence is a spike
Labellum characteristics:
the labellum is simple
Labellum length:
13–20 mm
Sepal length:
12–19 mm
Plant height:
25–50 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 Vulnerable
US Status N/A
Canadian Status N/A

North America Distribution

Adapted from USDA data