This section is from the book "An Illustrated Flora Of The Northern United States, Canada And The British Possessions Vol1", by Nathaniel Lord Britton, Addison Brown. Also available from Amazon: An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. 3 Volume Set..
Spiranthes ovalis Lindl. Gen. & Sp. Orch. 466. 1840.
Ibidium ovale House, Muhlenbergia 1: 128. 1906.
Stem 4'-15' tall, leafy below, minutely pubescent above. Leaves broadly linear to linear-oblong, 1 1/2' - 6 1/2' long, or, the upper smaller; spike slender, compact, tapering upward, the bracts shorter than the flowers; flowers small, about 2" long, white, nodding; lateral sepals free, lanceolate"; lip about 2" long, ovate, narrow at the apex or acute; callosities slender, curved.
Stem slender, 6'-22' high, usually copiously glandular-pubescent above, leafy. Leaves linear, or somewhat tapering to both ends, mostly 21/2 -6 1/2 long, persistent; spike strongly spiral, 2 1/2'-6' long, mostly 4"-6" thick; bracts much longer than the ovaries; flowers yellowish; hp 3"-3 1/2" long, ovate, much shorter than the median sepal; callosities slender, often hooked at the tip.
In dry or wet soil, Massachusetts to Florida and New Mexico, north in the Mississippi Valley to Illinois and Kansas. Aug.-Sept. A hybrid with /. gracile has been described.
Limodorv.m praecox Walt. Fl. Car. 221. 1788. Spiranthes graminea var. Walteri A. Gray, Man. Ed.
5, 505. 1867. Spiranthes praecox S. Wats, in A. Gray, Man. Ed. 6,
503. 1890. G. praecox Kuntze, Rev. Gen. PI. 663. 1891. Ibidium praecox House, Muhlenbergia 1: 129. 1906.
Stem slender, 10-30 high, sparingly glandular-pubescent above, leafy. Leaves linear, 4/-12' long, with narrow grass-like blades and long sheathing petioles, mostly persistent through the flowering season, the upper smaller; spike usually much twisted, 2'-8' long, 4"-6" thick; bracts about as long as the ovaries; flowers white, 3"-4" long, spreading; lip 3 1/2'-4" long, oblong, contracted above, the dilated apex obtuse, crenulate; callosities stout, usually straight.
In grassy places, southern New York to Florida and Texas. July-Aug.
Spiranthes Beckii Lindl. Gen. & Sp. Orch. 472. 1840 S". simplex A. Gray, Man. Ed. 5, 506. 1867. Not Griseb. Gyrostachys simplex Kuntze, Rev. Gen. PI. 664. 1891. Ibidium Beckii House, Muhlenbergia 1: 128. 1905.
Stems very slender, 5'-9' high, from a solitary spindle-shaped tuberous root, with small deciduous bracts above. Leaves basal, ovate or oblong, short, abruptly narrowed into a petiole, mostly disappearing at or before the flowering time; spike slender, about 1' long and 3" thick, glabrous, little twisted; flowers white, 1"-1 1/2" long; lip thin, striped, ovate to orbicular-ovate, erose-crisped from below the middle to the apex, short-clawed; callosities nipple-shaped, slender, usually curved or hooked at the tip.
In dry sandy soil, Massachusetts to New Jersey, Florida, Kentucky, Arkansas and Texas. Aug-Sept.
Neottia gracilis Bigel. Fl. Bost. Ed. 2, 322. 1824. Spiranthes gracilis Beck, Bot. 343. 1833. Gyrostachys gracilis Kuntze, Rev. Gen. PL 664. 1891. /. gracile House, Bull. Torr. Club 32: 381. 1905.
Stem slender, 8'-2° high, from a cluster of spindle-shaped tuberous roots, glabrous, or rarely pubescent above, bearing small deciduous bracts. Leaves basal, obovate, or ovate-lanceolate, peti-oled, the blades ¥-2' long, 4"-10" wide, mostly perishing before the flowering season; spike l' - 3' long, 4"-6" thick, loose, usually much twisted; flowers white, fragrant, 2"-2 1/2" long; sepals a little longer than the lip, the lateral ones free; lip about 2' long, oblong, dilated and crenulate or wavy-crisped at the apex, usually thick and green in the middle, white and hyaline on the margins, slightly clawed at the base; callosities small, nipple-shaped, stout, straight.