I grew up in Carlisle, MA in the 50’s and loved to go to “Lady Slipper Land” in the woods behind our house. I have over 100 blooming plants on my 10 acres. They became the state flower of Minnesota in 1902, where there were favored adornments of rural, church alters until it became illegal to pick the flowers or dig up the plants in 1925. Yes. A very beautiful flower to see. Lady’s slipper orchids are usually terrestrial, though some are epiphytic or grow on rocks. There are a small amount that grow on the Rail Trail right behind my house. am 74 years old. I’ve been away from that home for 45 years. This year I had TWO. Haven’t seen one since I was a little girl in Oxford Ma. Growing up in Ludlow Massachusetts my brother and I would take a walk in our back yard on the way to the Chicopee River to fish and we always saw plenty of them in the woods near the path we were on. Beautiful Touch to Gods Land that we were blessed with. My three brothers and I were told they were very special and against the law to pick them. Just came across 5 of these all growing within a 3 ft radius. But the beauty and splendor of this wondrous plant has never been matched or supplanted in memory. In one spot in a town park there are jack-in-the-pulpits, also. They did get leaves but never bloomed. About 30 years ago we moved into our New Home. This May we were delighted to find two beautiful lady slippers growing at the edge of our yard. In Nova Scotia, this orchid is associated with gypsum bedrock and it is found only at six locations with only two to 500 individuals at each site. I just came across one yesterday and was wondering if they’re still endangered! Also remember walking in woods and smelling a plant we called trailing arbutus. My husband dug them up with huge soil around them and transplanted them about 10-15 ft away from original area. They are passed around by people left and right. For may years I had 4 lady slippers at the top of my drive way away from the main road. We live in South Kingstown RI. The lady slipper flower — also known as the moccasin flower — is North America’s own much admired and often misunderstood wild native orchid. Of course we knew nothing of it, so he showed it to us. The six species in the genus Selenipedium, also native to tropical America, may be 5 metres (16 feet) tall. My sister who lives near Plymouth has them in her backyard too. We were lucky! My husband and I hiked in the Middlesex Fells Reservation today, on and around the Crystal Spring Trail. So sad! It’s a few hundred yards from our house in a small clearing in the woods. When we were young, my Mom had us make stick fences around them in our town forrest. I obediently let them be–even though I really wanted to pick a bouquet to bring home! My mother lives in Dublin, NH on 4.5 acres of wooded land and has had quite a few Lady Slippers. There was a huge field behind our house. A.Our lady's slippers are customarily shipped twice a year In Spring (April) and Fall (October through mid November) with Fall being a larger shipping season than Spring. Remember seeing these as a child growing up west of Boston. Ive just recently learned to recognize the plant by the leaves, without the famous bloom. Some species of lady slipper are listed as endangered or threatened in New England. Yes, while growing up I was always told not to pick Lady Slippers as it was an endangered species and illegal to pick them. Because a picked lady slipper will not rejuvenate itself, and the plant has a less than 5% transplant success rate, they are often considered “off-limits” to pickers and diggers. I wish I could attach my pictures! It left a traumatic, and lasting impression on me. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. Growing up in Taunton, Ma our mom would frequently take us on walks in the woods where we would see both yellow and pink lady slippers. I did think they were so beautiful. I do remember the beautiful lady slippers as I walked in the woods behind my house when I was a kid. It’s legal to sell them now. Any suggestions to keep it around forever? I picked a lady slipper for her on one of my nature walks in the wooded area next to our house. I was told NEVER pic or touch them when I was a child. Learn more! Currently (1984 to the present), 14 occurrences are documented in the state. Do Lady Slippers grow in other parts of the country, or are they indigenous to New England. It’s rare and needs to be protected.” I was sad, but also extremely excited about my find. I lived in Coventry RI. Nowadays I stumble upon them in predominantly pine forests …. Back then, it was illegal to pick them. i want to pot a few up from my direct property. The Forest Service map shows the range is about 1/3 of the United States. They thrived there my whole life and still are there. They were on the Kankamagus. A stubborn plant, the lady slipper can take many years to grow and develop from seed to mature plants. We enjoyed these for only a couple of years until someone (we live on a very exposed corner) dug them up and stole them. Alas, during a storm a large tree fell over the area and we never saw them there again. I was a little girl on a kindergarten field trip to ”Laughing Brook’ in Hampden, Ma. As a child in the 1960’s living in Edgewood, RI, my family would go on day trips to Arcadia Park in western RI. Vermont Wildflower Farm, Charlotte, VT. 50 years ago when we bought our home in NYState, my wife, who was familiar with lady slippers from her days as a student at Wheaton College, Norton, MA, ordered some to plant in the woods behind our house. Get a Britannica Premium subscription and gain access to exclusive content. We have them growing in our back yard amongst the ferns and trees. ), purchased many years ago from (I think) the John Scheepers catalogue. We were thrilled when their delicate flowers bloomed each Spring, but never, ever picked them, even though they were on our own private property. and always adored them and let them grow, never touched them. What a loss! My parents and grandparents repeatedly told us to NEVER pick these flowers, or dig them up for transplanting. Once established, lady slipper plants will propagate on their own and live for many years if left undisturbed. do they like softwood areas because the ground is arid or does the soils texture and composition provide unique nutrients. I was always told not to pick them. Three types of lady slipper, the Showy, Small Yellow and Ram’s-Head, are listed on the official Massachussett’s endangered plants list. Another is the pink lady’s slipper (C. acaule), also known as the moccasin flower. Growing up in Maine I have no memory of seeing these beauties but in later years I found them in Connecticut and in New Hampshire. Purple of years some have returned, and we even had a white one mixed in wth the pinks. I think they are one of the most beautiful flowers I’ve ever seen. My parents considered hospitalizing me in the week following our woodland adventure. I just love seeing it come back every spring. We saw one today in Rhode Island. It’s still my favorite flower to this day. And, yes, I was told, as a kid, it is illegal to pick them. When we moved to Salem, CT there were Lady Slippers (only a few) growing in back of our house. When growing in the wild, if you pick them they will not come back. I must live somewhere very odd then. I found them in the woods one day (Massachusetts). Every time I see one there reminds me of my mother. I had a friend in one day and she was shocked and told me they were on the conservation llist. I am 62 years old and my grandfather owned a cabin on Bare Hill Pond in Harvard MA when I was a child. This is my first spring in New England and what should I find in the wooded side yard off my deck but several pink Lady Slipper’s. A Lady’s Slipper grew in the woods next to the cabin and I was always under the impression that it was illegal to pick it. I used to walk a trail in NH mostly in the spring because of all the lady slippers that were there. Growing up as a child in Wakefield, Mass. Both survived much to my father’s delight . Most species have one or two flowers on a stem about 30 to 60 cm (12 to 24 inches) tall. I wish the thief was a bit more informed about what a bad idea that was on so many levels. There have to be two hundred altogether. I have lived in Hingham, MA since 1986 and have spent a great deal of time in our local woods, with our dogs. We lived in a home in North Stonington, CT that had beautiful lady slippers in the front yard. We purchased a small caretakers house from a larger parcel of land that was being broken up. The land has since been developed and they are most likely all gone now. 🙂. Along the streams and ponds we would occasionally see lady slippers and jack- in- the- pulpits. He was of native american decent and this was his gift to me. I can still remember the fear that I might be stopped by the police as I carried it home in a paper bag! We had many on our land but due to developments we have lost them, which saddened me deeply. I then tried to plant them in my yard, all to no avail. We found ~3 Pink Lady Slippers in our wooded trail near our property.. so glad to read the article . and now live in SC. Today, April 27, 2019, I now have 10 getting ready to come up. About 20 species of lady’s slippers constitute the genus Phragmipedium. I live in western North Carolina. They did come up the following years but I think it was because of the same soil conditions. So sad! Updated 2015 . Is the Lady Slipper Endangered? In east central West Virginia, the logging industry has taken it’s toll on not only the Pink Lady Slipper but other high mountain species as well. I was just on a walk in a forest near my home (NEPA) when I stumbled upon one of these. We don’t know where or why…. We were pretty amused to see how her description actually brought up the correct flower. They grew on my land when I had 8 acres of land, and love the beauty, of them, lived in Sutton, NH, on Corporation Hill Rd. About 4 years ago we spotted about 3 on the edge of our dirt road, hidden among some debris and low growing mountain laurel. When I lived in Ashford, CT there was an area with lots of shade and humus where I discovered over a dozen blooming. I don’t touch it, feed it or water it, because I am afraid it will die. It was serendipitous to read your comment about Canfield Woods. I am glad we did not let the young kids pick it, especially knowing now that they should not be picked. showy lady's-slipper orchid. It bloomed every year for about 3 years then no more. We had a precious few around our house but I clearly remember when a nearby intersection was going to be widened and my father knew there were two ladies slippers that would have been destroyed, he transplanted them into our yard. The wonderful comments brought back so many cherished memories from my childhood. We have a lot of nature trails and walking places here and they are very abundant. Have you ever seen a lady slipper plant in the forest? Lady’s slippers are found throughout Eurasia and the Americas, and some species are cultivated. It was a wonderland for a kid. Wonderful memories! Lady's Slipper Orchid (Cypripedium calceolus) This orchid is one of the most endangered flowers in the world. I hope the people who now live in the house enjoy them as much as we did. We also always looked for “Stinking Benjamin’s” on our rides. A neighbor tried to transplant them on a number of different occasions, but the plants never successfully took/re-blossomed. My sister-in-law replanted some and they survived for a while but again developments contributed to their demise. Every year we’d stop on our way by to enjoy them. We would pick them but it wasn’t until I was older when I was told they shouldn’t be picked because it takes so long for them to propagate. I lived in Greenwich, Connecticut growing up. Growing up in central Maine, Dad was a forester and if he knew there were LSs in areas they were cutting he’d attempt to transplant them …. We didn’t dare! I m also in the Adirondacks. They transform the woods into an enchanted forest! We used to find lady slippers in the woods behind our house when I was little. In the 1950’s my Mom was a Girl Scout leader, and on our scouting hikes tried to protect Lady Slippers by making stick fences around them, at least a foot or so from the blossoms, in an attempt to prevent them from being trampled, and to warn off those tempted to pick them. I *think* we have Lady’s Slipper, both white and pink, but I’m not totally sure that that is what they are. I lived in N. Reading, Ma. What a treat to see for many years. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). When I moved from Maryland to Connecticut, pink lady slippers bloomed in the woods behind our house. As a child growing up in York, Maine, the woods was full of the beautiful pink slipper. I have seen purple Slippers on a couple of hills that the Turkeys roost on. Told us they were very special and against the law takes many ago. Exploring the natural world around you Beach in Westford, are lady slippers endangered and three years ago Massachusetts that was my! 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