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Ronald A. Coleman, Dieter H. Wilken & William F. Jennings, except as noted

Perennial herb, terrestrial [growing on other plants], non-green (nutrition from association of roots with fungi) or green, generally from rhizomes or tubers with few to many fleshy to slender roots; cauline leaves ± reduced to sheathing stem bracts or not. Leaf: 1–many, basal to cauline, linear to ± round, alternate to opposite (if only 1 pair), generally sessile. Inflorescence: flowers 1–many, spike or raceme, bracted. Flower: bisexual, bilateral, in bud generally rotating 180° by twisting ovary (position of parts indicated after twisting); sepals generally 3, generally free, generally petal-like, uppermost generally erect, lateral with chin- or spur-like projection (mentum) or not; petals 3, 1 (lip) different, spurred or not; stamens generally 1 (3 in Cypripedium, 2 functional, 1 a staminode), fused with style, stigma into column, pollen generally lumped, generally removed as unit by insect; ovary inferior, 1-chambered, placentas 3, parietal, stigma 3 lobed, generally under column tip. Fruit: capsule. Seed: many, minute.
± 800 genera, ± 25000 species: especially tropics (worldwide except Antarctica). Many cultivated for ornamental, especially Cattleya, Cymbidium, Epidendrum, Oncidium, Paphiopedilum; Vanilla planifolia Andrews fruits used to flavor food. [Romero-Gonzalez et al. 2002 FNANM 26:490–651] Platanthera may be paraphyletic without inclusion of Piperia (Bateman et al. 2009 Ann Bot 104:431–445); study needed. —Scientific Editors: Ronald A. Coleman, Thomas J. Rosatti.
Unabridged references: [Luer 1975 Orchids US and Can, NY Bot Garden; Coleman 1995 Wild Orchids of California. Cornell Univ.]

Key to Orchidaceae

Caudex short, slender to bulb-like; rhizome 0. Leaf: ± basal, 1(2[5]), sheathing. Inflorescence: raceme [spike]; bracts << flowers. Flower: lower sepals free [basally united], spreading to ascending, generally green; lateral petals generally narrower than sepals, spreading to erect, lip spreading to ± pendent; column generally > petals, oblong to triangular, generally concave. Fruit: spreading to erect.
± 200 species: worldwide (except Africa). (Greek: soft, from leaves)

M. monophyllos (L.) Sw. var. brachypoda (A. Gray) F. Morris & E.A. Eames WHITE BOG ADDER'S-MOUTH
Plant 10–15 cm; caudex bulb-like. Leaf: 4–5.5 cm, wide-lanceolate to ovate, sheath 2–3 cm. Inflorescence: 2–6 cm, open; pedicels < 1.5 mm. Flower: green to yellow; sepals 1–2 mm, narrow-lanceolate; lateral petals ± = lip, linear, ± curved behind flower, lip 1.5–3 mm, triangular, base cordate, tip beak-like; column < 1 mm. Fruit: 3.5–5.5 mm.
2n=28. Wet meadows, shaded places, conifer forest; 2200–2800 m. San Bernardino Mountains (presumed extinct San Jacinto Mountains); to Alaska, northeastern North America; also Colorado. [Malaxis brachypoda (A. Gray) Fernald; Malaxis monophyllos subsp. brachypoda (A. Gray) Á. Löve & D. Löve] Jul–Aug [Online Interchange] {CNPS list}

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Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2013. Jepson eFlora,, accessed on Nov 25 2015
Citation for this treatment: [Author of taxon treatment] 2013. Malaxis, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on Nov 25 2015

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Geographic subdivisions indicated for the distribution of Malaxis monophyllos var. brachypoda Markers link to CCH specimen records. If the markers are obscured, reload the page [or change window size and reload]. Yellow markers indicate records that may provide evidence for eFlora range revision or may have georeferencing or identification issues.
map of distribution 1
(Note: any qualifiers in the taxon distribution description, such as 'northern', 'southern', 'adjacent' etc., are not reflected in the map above, and in some cases indication of a taxon in a subdivision is based on a single collection or author-verified occurence).

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Data provided by the participants of the Consortium of California Herbaria.
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CCH collections by month

Duplicates counted once; synonyms included.
Species do not include records of infraspecific taxa.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time.