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Genus: Listera

Listera Species in
Family: Orchidaceae

Perhaps 25 species of ground orchids from the northern temperate and boreal zones. They are rhizomatous perennials with fibrous roots and erect stems topped by a single pair of leaves and a slender raceme of small greenish to yellowish flowers. These have five similar spreading tepals and a longer, down-pointing, bi-lobed or forked lip.


More intriguing than attractive and essentially plants for the collector. Could be grown on the rock garden but rarely commercially available. Best in loamy or humus-rich soils which do not dry out rapidly, in sun or shade. Propagation by division when possible, in late winter, or seed scattered in situ when ripe or soon afterwards. Seedlings develop underground and it may take up to fifteen years before flowers appear.