Western Prairie Fringed Orchid
Photo by Bob Gress
used by permission

Western Prairie Fringed Orchid
Plantanthera praeclara

Federal Status:

State Status:


  • Range: Kansas range map for Western Prairie Fringed Orchid
    Dark Green = Current county records
    Light Green = Historical records
  • Comments:  The “fringe” in the name, Western prairie fringed orchid, refers to the margins of the flower petals that have a feathery appearance. It is a perennial plant that can go dormant during periods of drought. Its multiple white blooms on a single flower stalk appear in June or early July. The existence of this plant may be tied closely to its nocturnal pollinator, the long-tongued hawkmoth, which is highly attracted to the scent of the flowers. The western prairie fringed orchid is found in moist prairie or sedge meadow habitats. The loss of native tallgrass prairie to farmland, development, fire suppression, overgrazing and habitat fragmentation have made this a rare plant. It is found in six states at approximately 75 sites. In Kansas, it is found at four sites in four counties.

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Other Plants on the Kansas T&E List

Kansas Wildlife Refuge
Text: Ed Miller and Bob Gress
Range Maps and Web Design: Jim Mason

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Great Plains Nature Center
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