Identify winter woodland groundcover

coyotechic(7)April 10, 2014

This plant grows like a ground cover in the winter months and goes dormant in the spring... and is doing so now. If it blooms, I haven't seen it. The photograph of the top of the leaf was taken in January. The bottom of the leaf is deep burgundy. Each leaf, 3.5" - 4", comes from the ground on a single 1.5" stem.

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jekeesl (south-central Arkansas)(7b)

May be Tipularia discolor (Crane-fly Orchid). If so, the bottom side of the leaf will be purple. Tipularia discolor leaves will usually wither by May here in Arkansas, and the orchids (without leaves) flower mid-August through October. The leaves (sans flowering stems) show up again in October or November.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 7:41PM
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coyotechic(7)

Yes, jekeesl, that is it! Many thanks. ... I will certainly look for the flower this summer

This post was edited by coyotechic on Thu, Apr 10, 14 at 20:45

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 8:36PM
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jekeesl (south-central Arkansas)(7b)

You might consider marking that spot. The stems and flowers are in shades of brown and green, and the plants blend in so well that you can be 5 feet away and not see them. The plants should be about 1-2 feet tall by early September, (plus or minus some, depending upon your location). Here's a photo of the flowers.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 9:24PM
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coyotechic(7)

Here is one of my 3 Crane-fly Orchids in full bloom right now.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2014 at 12:58AM
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coyotechic(7)

This one shows more of the entire stem. It is difficult to photograph, I think. This is my favorite plant in our native shade garden!

    Bookmark   July 29, 2014 at 1:02AM
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jekeesl (south-central Arkansas)(7b)

That is one of my favorites, too, and they just came up here last week. Your photos are pretty decent. Crane-fly Orchid is definitely one of the most difficult plants to photograph. With those muted greens and browns, and shiny stems, the camera doesn't seem to find focus. I usually just point and shoot, but may have to go manual with a tripod for this plant. Thanks for the follow-up.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2014 at 7:30AM
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coyotechic(7)

jekeesl: I am so going to try this come Nov. if the seeds are still collectible!

Here is a link that might be useful: SEED GERMINATION OF TIPULARIA DISCOLOR

    Bookmark   August 15, 2014 at 11:29AM
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