Spiranthes praecox (Walter) S. Watson

Giant Ladies' Tresses, Grass Leaved Ladies' Tresses

Facts About

Accepted Synonyms: Ibidium praecox

Spiranthes praecox, commonly called Grass Leaved Ladies' Tresses, is distributed in the southeastern United States and around the Gulf Coast, from Texas to Maryland. It produces up to 7 basal leaves, and bears an inflorescence of up to 40 white or rarely green flowers. The inflorescence is covered in small hairs, and the labellum has distinct green veins. The lateral sepals are joined to the labellum, giving it a tube-like appearance. It can be distinguished from other Spiranthes species by the distinctive green venation on the labellum. It can be found in dry to moist prairies, meadows, pinelands, and occasionally bogs. It is known to form a hybrid with S. vernalis, named S. x meridionalis.

Spiranthes praecox is considered globally secure, although it is rare or vulnerable throughout much of the East Coast.


Pollinator information for this orchid has not been reported.

Ecosystem Type

Bogs, meadows, prairie


Leaf arrangement:
Number of leaves on stem:
Form of the labellum:
the labellum is not pouch-like
Labellum outline:
the labellum is simple
Main color of labellum:
  • green to brown
  • white
Nectar spur:
Inflorescence type:
the inflorescence is a spike
Labellum characteristics:
the labellum is simple
Labellum length:
5–11 mm
Sepal length:
5–10 mm
Plant height:
20–75 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 Secure
US Status N/A
Canadian Status N/A

North America Distribution

Adapted from USDA data