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Wild yellow lady slipper

This is a discussion on Wild yellow lady slipper within the Paphiopedilum, Phragmipedium, Cypripedium IN BLOOM forums, part of the Orchid Photography category; I took this picture during our April vacation in Shenandoah National Park, VA. They were ...

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    Default Wild yellow lady slipper

    I took this picture during our April vacation in Shenandoah National Park, VA. They were just growing on the side of the road. I couldn't believe my eyes!Name:  yellow orchid.jpg
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    Just beautiful! I know this kind of excitement

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    Beautiful!!!
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    Is that an orchid? The flowers look like a paph but I don't recognize the leaves. It doesn't have a fan of leaves like paphs do. It's also growing in clay type soil where orchids would not normally grow. Could that be another plant that has a flower like a paph?

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    Someone just posted a Cypripedium with very similar foliage...

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    You're absolutely right that is a Cypripedium. Here's part of what Wikapedia says about it.

    Cypripedium is a genus of 47 species of hardy, lady's-slipper orchids native to temperate and colder regions of the Northern Hemisphere.
    Some grow in the tundra in Alaska and Siberia, which is an unusually cold habitat for orchids. They can withstand extreme cold, growing under the snow and blooming when the snow melts. But, in the wild, most have become rare and close to extinction, due to an ever shrinking natural habitat and overcollection. In the late 20th century, only a single plant of Cypripedium calceolus survived in Britain.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tucker85 View Post
    You're absolutely right that is a Cypripedium. Here's part of what Wikapedia says about it.

    Cypripedium is a genus of 47 species of hardy, lady's-slipper orchids native to temperate and colder regions of the Northern Hemisphere.
    Some grow in the tundra in Alaska and Siberia, which is an unusually cold habitat for orchids. They can withstand extreme cold, growing under the snow and blooming when the snow melts. But, in the wild, most have become rare and close to extinction, due to an ever shrinking natural habitat and overcollection. In the late 20th century, only a single plant of Cypripedium calceolus survived in Britain.

    Jeff, thanks for the info!

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    Oh...my...goodness! It would probably have been illegal to take one home, huh? LOL Those are SO NEAT!! I love the twisted petals.

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    I believe they are protected, and is not legal to collect them from the wild. Some times you can buy them through a catalog or in a plant nursery and they can be very expensive ($80-$130). The problem with trying to grow them at home is that they are very fussy with the specific chemistry of the medium they grow in. We had a speaker in our orchid society once, talking about cultivating Cypripediums and let me tell you, it is very complicated. It involves layers of leaf molt, peat moss, and sand in a raised bed, as well as, perfect moisture and perfect sun exposure. It is so much more fun to find to find them in the wild. Interestingly, every time I find them, they grow right by the road.

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