Epipactis gigantea

Epipactis gigantea

Scientific Classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Liliopsida
Order: Asparagales
Subfamily: Epidendroideae
Tribe: Neottieae
SubTribe: Limodorinae
Genus: Epipactis
Species: Epcts. gigantea
Binomial name
Epipactis gigantea
Douglas ex Hook. 1839

Epipactis gigantea is an herbaceous plant from the family Orchidaceae.


Plant blooms from spring to summer with four to twelve 5 cm wide flowers.Each flower has three straight sepals which are light brownish or greenish with darker veining, each one to two centimeters long. The two top petals are similar in shape and reddish-brown with purple veins. The lowest petal is cup-shaped with a pointed, tongue-like protuberance and is brighter red-brown and more starkly veined, often with areas of yellow.

This is an erect perennial reaching anywhere from 30 centimeters to one meter in height. Its stems have wide or narrow lance-shaped leaves 5 to 15 centimeters long and inflorescences of two or three showy orchids near the top.

The fruit is a hanging capsule 2 or 3 centimeters long which contains thousands of tiny seeds. Unlike some of its relatives, this species is an autotroph.


This wildflower is native to western North America from western Canada to central Mexico. This plant grows in wet areas in a variety of habitats, including riverbanks, hot springs, and meadows in chaparral, pine forest, and grasslands at elevations of 0 to 500 meters


Plant prefers areas with moderate to bright light and cool temperatures. Grow plants in a well drain mix of soil, perlite, and sand. Keep the medium constantly moist but not soaking wet and do not let it dry out.


Epipactis gigantea 'Serpentine Knight' Epipactis gigantea 'Serpentine Night' Leaves and stem are purple and slowly turn green


Common Names: Giant Helleborine


  1. Amesia gigantea (Douglas ex Hook.) A. Nelson & J.F. Macbr. 1913
  2. Arthrochilium giganteum (Douglas ex Hook.) Szlach. 2003
  3. Epipactis americana Lindl. 1840
  4. Epipactis gigantea f. rubrifolia P.M.Br. 1995
  5. Epipactis pringlei Gand. 1919 publ. 1920
  6. Helleborine gigantea [Doug ex Hook.] Druce 1909
  7. Limodorum giganteum [Doug. ex Hkr.]Kuntze 1891
  8. Peramium giganteum [Doug. ex Hkr.] Coulter 1894
  9. Serapias gigantea [Doug. ex Hkr.] A.A.Eaton 1908

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