Archive for the ‘Rare’ Category

Pink Ladies Slipper – Cypripedium acaule

Pink Ladies Slipper Orchid
Pink Ladies Slipper Orchid

…Fore, I’m Pink Lady Slipper
nature’s wonder of wonders
to remain in stately splendor
in my homeland of the wild
the woodlands lonely child
an Orchid of pink flower…
grandeur is of my leafless flowering stalk
where birds squawk in trees
rustling leaves; talking their
talk, whispering of the lonely
child living in the wild…

By D A Baugh

Read the entire poem at

This rare orchid is native to Eastern North America; they grow in shady forests under pines, oaks, sweet gum, red Maple, Sassafras, and greenbrier. It is listed as Unusual, Endangered, or vulnerable in Georgia, Illinois, New York and Tennessee. It is almost impossible to transplant

because it takes a special organism in the soil for them to thrive. Many people have tried to transplant them with harmful effect…the plants slowly die due to the lack. It is highly recommended that you only take pictures of these delicate orchids to remove from the forest….

NOT the plant itself.

O ka u la su lo (the Cherokee name for the Lady’s Slipper) was considered a sacred plant by the Cherokee and other eastern woodlands peoples. They used it for medicine for the treatment of anxiety, nervousness, and especially insomnia. It was also included in 1 or 2 formulas for its antispasmodic activity.

In modern herbal medicine the root is considered antispasmodic, nervine, sedative and tonic. The root has been used in the treatment of nervous complaints, menstrual disorders, stomach aches, kidney and urinary disorders, and venereal diseases. An infusion of the fall harvested tubers is used in these treatments.

Pink Lady’s Slipper is the provincial flower of Prince Edwards Island, and Nova Scotia, Canada

Pink Lady’s Slipper Orchid – Cypripedium acaule

My first memory of this pretty little orchid was from 1962, I was 12 years old and at Girl Scout Camp in Deep Creek, Maryland. We had a cool counselor who told us about the things (plants and animals) that surrounded us! I had earned the two weeks at camp by selling Girl Scout Cookies; actually my Dad sold most of them (smile).

Also known as Mocassin Flower


When we found this pink early spring ephemeral, we were told about how rare it was. We were told to look and not touch. She brought the flower to life by retelling an old Ojibwa tale of a young girl who was brave and fearless.

Pink Lady's Slipper

Her family and village were all sick; so she walked through snow to




retrieve the healing herbs from the one who had them. Walking home

she lost her moccasins and left bloody footprints in the snow. After

her people were healed she and her brother found the Lady’s Slipper

blooming in her footprints as the snow melted!


This past spring, on the road behind ours we found in the woods the wonderful pink Lady’ Slipper. It is still relatively rare, but here in Delaware they are not listed as Endangered. I would love to have this flower in the garden, but they hate their roots to be disturbed, and they need a special microbe in the soil to flourish. So I will leave this medicinal plant where I find it, and go revisit it next year.