Copyright © 2001,2003,2004,2009  Doris E. Ames,  Winnipeg, Manitoba


Native orchids are found in most places in Manitoba.  During the warm months of the year, many species such as the lady's-slippers can be identified by their showy flowers.  However, during the fall and winter months they often must be identified by their seed pods alone.

Starting in the fall of 1998, I began to collect and identify samples of dehisced orchid pods.  After the recent additions, Listera borealis (Northern twayblade) in 2004, and Epipactis helleborine (Broad-leaved helleborine) in 2009, my collection now includes pods from 36 of Manitoba's 39 varieties of native orchids.  I am still looking for the pods of Listera auriculata (Auricled twayblade).

My pod collection helps me to identify orchids and their habitat at any time of the year.  Even though some of the pods are not in very good shape they are better than a written description alone.  I have prepared a booklet with scanned images of these seed capsules that I can take with me when doing botanical surveys.  This information may be of interest to other amateur naturalists.  People who do environmental assessments and pre-harvest surveys for logging companies may also find it useful in identifying rare understory plants.  For this reason I decided to make these images available on the NOCI website, in the hope that it might promote orchid conservation.

If you wish to re-publish any of these images, please ask me first.  I anticipate being glad to permit their use in educational not-for-profit publications, provided you mention the source.  For further information please contact me at

[In the paper version of this book, images are life-size and 11 inches high;  in the CD version they are life-size at 200dpi;  in the web version they are life-size at 72dpi.]

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