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Published In: Medical Repository 5: 357. 1808. (Med. Repos.) Name publication detail

Project Name Data (Last Modified On 7/9/2009)
Acceptance : Accepted
Project Data     (Last Modified On 7/23/2009)


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10. Isotria Raf. (whorled pogonia)

Plants lacking rhizomes, the roots fascicled from the base of the flowering stem, fibrous or somewhat fleshy. Flowering stems glabrous, somewhat glaucous, hollow, with 1 or 2 flowers at the tip. Leaves 5 or 6, in a single whorl near the tip of the flowering stem, 3–5(–8) cm long, elliptic to obovate, green, glabrous. Sepals spreading, all similar. Lateral petals curved inward and overlapping over the column. Lip 3‑lobed, positioned parallel to the column. Stamen 1, staminodes lacking. Capsules erect, 18–30 mm long, elliptic in outline, strongly ribbed. Two species, North America.

Vegetative plants of Isotria might be confused with those of the Indian cucumber root, Medeola virginiana L. (Liliaceae). The latter species can be distinguished by its nonglaucous stems that are solid rather than hollow and have cobwebby pubescence.


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1 Stems green; sepals 15–25 mm long, only slightly longer than the petals, yellowish green to green, narrowly oblanceolate to oblong-linear; mature capsules with stalks 10–15 mm long 1 Isotria medeoloides
+ Stems purple; sepals 30–60 mm long, at least twice as long as the petals, purplish green, linear-attenuate; mature capsules with stalks 20–60 mm long 2 Isotria verticillata
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