Spiranthes laciniata (Small) Ames

Lacelip Ladies' Tresses

Facts About

Accepted Synonyms: Ibidium laciniatum

Spiranthes laciniata, commonly known as Lacelip Ladies' Tresses, has a limited distribution in the southeastern United States and southern mid-Atlantic region, from Texas to New Jersey. It has up to 5 basal, grass-like leaves which persist through flowering. It produces a tightly spiraled inflorescence of multiple small, white to cream-colored flowers. The labellum is often shaded with yellow at the center, and its edges are denticulate, giving it a lace-like appearance. The main axis of the inflorescence is covered in small hairs. It can be found in moist meadows, marshes, swamps, along roadsides, and occasionally in lawns and wet fields.

Spiranthes laciniata is globally considered apparently secure. Although it resembles S. vernalis, it can be distinguished by its later flowering period and by the hairs on its inflorescence, which are pointed in S. vernalis but rounded at the tip in S. laciniata.


Pollinator information for this orchid has not been reported but flower morphology suggests bees (Bombus) are the pollinators of this orchid. As in most Spiranthes, bees move upward on the inflorescence in search of nectar. Older flowers at the base of the stalk have more nectar, which makes them an efficient first stop for the foraging bumble bees.

Ecosystem Type

Disturbed habitats, marshes, meadows, swamps, woodlands


Leaf arrangement:
  • basal
  • stem
Form of the labellum:
the labellum is not pouch-like
Labellum outline:
the labellum is fringed
Main color of labellum:
Nectar spur:
Inflorescence type:
the inflorescence is a spike
Labellum characteristics:
  • the labellum is fringed
  • the labellum is simple
Labellum length:
6–9 mm
Sepal length:
6–10 mm
Plant height:
20–100 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