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An Orchid Without Leaves

Most orchids have green leaves where the process of photosynthesis takes place utilizing the sun’s rays, water and minerals from the soil. The spotted coral root is an orchid that has no chlorophyll. It gets its nutrients in a unique way. It depends on mycorrhizal fungi in the soil to get its nutrients.

This orchid’s range includes most of North America from the west coast to the east coast. You can find it growing in the shade on the forest floor. In New York I once found it growing under a grove of white pine trees.

Note: The photographs posted here are of a plant that had already gone to seed.

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