Slender ladies’ tresses

Common Name:

slender ladies' tresses

Scientific Name:

Spiranthes gracilis






Common orchid species often seen in unmowed turfgrass, especially centipedegrass and zoysiagrass, or in natural areas. Inflorescence a spiraling stem of stalk of small white flowers. Individual flowers only a few millimeters across. A magnifying lens is required to see flower details. Leaves are linear with linear venation, but leaves are rarely seen.


Common plant on sandy soils in mid to late summer. Inflorescence often appear quickly and leaves remain below the turfgrass or leaf litter canopy and are unnoticed. There is no need to apply any weed control measures to remove this plant. Mowing will remove the flower stalks and a second stalk is normally not produced. Individuals should enjoy this plant species if it appears on their property. It is a unique native plant found in the southeast.