There are two lady's slipper plants to be found within Pittsylvania and adjacent counties.
- The yellow lady's slipper (photo on left) blooms locally in April thru May. It seems to prefer organic soils and boggy areas. Those that I have seen over the years were mostly found on
woodland slopes. My earliest observation of this orchid was within the city limits of Danville in 1965. The wooded hillsides and meandering streams upriver from the Schoolfield Dam were ideal sites for many wildflower species. Nowadays, the yellow lady's slipper can be found only
in relatively unspoiled rural settings; even so, this native orchid is (for some reason) becoming quite rare.
- The pink lady's slipper or moccasin flower (photo on right) that blooms in late April to the middle of May has managed to remain quite common throughout open woodlands. As we hike through wooded areas, it is a joy to stumble across the flowering site of a moccasin flower. I can recall a sense of amazement on the faces of some students when they had observed this strange flower for the first time. Many students were also surprised to learn that this flower was a native orchid.
Copyright © 2003 William T. Hathaway.