The Delicate Arch Viewpoint Road is closed. All other roads and trails remain open, but many trails are snowy, icy, and dangerous. Please inquire at the visitor center for the most up-to-date conditions.
Construction Update - 11/25/2013
Construction work continues at the Devils Garden parking lot, limiting parking and causing occasional delays. Visitors can avoid the area by turning around at Sand Dune Arch. More »
Giant Epipactis (Stream Orchid; Giant Helleborine; Helleborine)
Synonyms: Amesia gigantea; Limodorum giganteum; Peramium giganteum; Serapias gigantea; Helleborine gigantea
Family: Orchidaceae – Orchid Family
Perennial herbs; erect stems arising from a rhizome; 11.8" to 4.6' (3 to14 dm) tall
Leaves: alternate; simple; leaves 2.2” to 8” (5.5 to 20 cm) long, 0.8” to 2.8” (2 to 7 cm) wide
Flowers: showy; 3 to 12 flowers; 3 petals green to rose to brownish purple; lip has strong veins marked with red or purple; petals 0.32” to 0.36” (8 to 9 mm) long, 0.28” to 0.32” (7 to 8 mm) wide; one petal (the lip) differs from the other two petals in size and coloration; lip 0.6” to 0.72” (15 to 18 mm) long; 3 sepals green to rose with purple or red nerves; sepals 0.24” to 0.32” (6 to 8 mm) wide
Pollinators: other genera in this family are pollinated by insects
Blooms in Arches National Park: April, May June, July, August
Habitat in Arches National Park: along streams, rivers, seeps and hanging gardens
Location seen: around springs and seeps
Other: The genus name, “Epipactis”, is either from the Greek “epipaktis” or “epipegnuo”, the name adopted for this genus which was originally called “hellebore” which refers to a milk-curdling property claimed for some species. The species name, “gigantea”, means “gigantic” referring to the height of the plant.
Did You Know?
The common raven displays abilities to play and problem-solve that are rare among animals. This member of the crow family is also very vocal, communicating with over a dozen sounds. Perhaps because of these qualities, ravens have achieved a certain stature in both European and Native American folklore.