Scape. - Sheathed, from a globular bulb, usually one-flowered. Leaf. - "Solitary, linear, nerved, hidden in the sheaths of the scape, protruding after flowering." (Gray.) Flower. - Rose-purple.large, with a bearded lip.
In some localities this beautiful flower is very plentiful. Every June will find certain New England marshes tinged with its rose-purple blossoms, while in other near and promising bogs it may be sought vainly for years. At least it may be hoped for in wet places as far south as North Carolina, its most favorite haunt being perhaps a cranberry-swamp. Concerning it, Mr. Burroughs writes : "Arethusa was one of the nymphs who attended Diana, and was by that goddess turned into a fountain, that she might escape the god of the river Alpheus, who became desperately in love with her on seeing her at her bath. Our Arethusa is one of the prettiest of the orchids, and has been pursued through many a marsh and quaking - bog by her lovers. She is a bright pink-purple flower an inch or more long, with the odor of sweet violets. The sepals and petals rise up and arch over the column, which we may call the heart of the flower, as if shielding it. In Plymouth County, Mass., where the Arethusa seems common, I have heard it called Indian pink."