The Wrack

The Wrack is the Wells Reserve blog, our collective logbook on the web.

Dragon's Mouth in the Bog

Posted by | June 6, 2012 | Filed under: Observations

Arethusa blossomArethusa bulbosaDragon's mouth or swamp-pink — is a perennial herb in the orchid family. In late spring, it can be found blooming in bogs or other swampy areas across much of Canada and the northeastern United States. We're fortunate to have a small population in the bog along the Muskie Trail. The recent construction of a boardwalk through the area is meant in part to help preserve this beauty.

Dragon's mouth is considered threatened or endangered in every New England state but Maine. In 1997, the Maine Natural Areas Program was on the fence about its status ("believed rare in Maine, but possibly secure"), but has since apparently made up its mind. Arethusa is not on the current rare plant list.

This beautiful orchid is apparently secure globally, but with cause for long-term concern. Habitat destruction and over-collection of wild specimens probably pose the greatest danger.


Dragon's mouth, Arethusa bulbosa, at the Wells Reserve

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