Goodyera repens
(Linnaeus) R. Brown in Aiton var. repens Creeping Rattlesnake Plantain
Lesser Rattlesnake Plantain
Location Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, British Columbia, Yukon, Northwest Territories. A well known European species ranging commonly in forests around the northern hemisphere, but only at high elevations in the southern reaches.

Specific Habitat

Grows almost entirely in coniferous woods and bogs in cool, shaded soils. It roots in moss and surface litter, often in dense shade at the bases of trees.

Flowering Season July and August.


Height of flower scape 10 40 cm.
Stem pubescent, usually with a few tiny bracts.
Leaves: 6-8 in a basal rosette, evergreen, ovate to obovate, dark bluish green.
Raceme densely flowered, cylindrical, flowers facing out on all sides.
Flowers nearly spherical when viewed from the side, all parts white, sometimes with greenish tints. Petals and dorsal sepal form a hood over the lip, lateral sepals curving towards the lip but with spreading tips. Lip narrowly sacate, tip triangular and deeply downcurved.


Distinguished from var. ophioides by the solid colour of its leaves. This solid green leaf form is more common in Eurasia; whereas, the tesselated form of var. ophioides is more common in North America.


Orchids of the Western Great Lakes Region
The Native Orchids of the United States and Canada excluding Florida

Habitat Plant Flower

© Royal Botanical Gardens, Dr. Donald Gunn Image Collection.