California Native Plant Society
Tap map to see plants native to location
Piperia unalascensis
Please enter either the common name or the botanical name of any native California plant species to see it's plant record

Slender-spire Orchid Alaska Piperia
  • Added Add to My Plant List
Piperia unalascensis

Zoom To My AddressZoom To California Estimated Plant Range

About Slender-spire Orchid Alaska Piperia (Piperia unalascensis) Piperia unalascensis is a species of orchid known by the common names slender-spire orchid, Alaska piperia and Alaska rein orchid. It is native to much of western North America from Alaska to the southwestern United States, as well as eastern sections of Canada and the Great Lakes. It can be found in forest, woodland, and scrub habitat, often in dry areas. This orchid grows erect to about 70 centimeters in maximum height. The basal leaves are up to 15 centimeters long by 4 wide. Leaves higher on the stem are much reduced. The upper part of the stem is a slender, spikelike inflorescence of widely spaced translucent green flowers. The flowers are fragrant in the evenings, with a musky, soapy, or honeylike scent. The plant is variable in size, stem thickness, density of inflorescence, petal shape, and scent. Plants of the coast ranges and the Pacific Northwest are stouter and have broader sepals and petals than do interior and montane forms.
Plant Description
Plant Type
Perennial herb

Max. Height
2.3 ft (0.7 m)

Flower Color

Native Status

Natural Setting
Elevation ?
133' - 8951'

Annual Precip. ?
7.2" - 141.0"

Summer Precip. ?
0.19" - 4.96"

Coldest Month ?
25.6° F - 55.2° F

Hottest Month ?
50.9° F - 83.4° F

Humidity ?
0.52 vpd - 34.96 vpd

Landscaping Information
Nursery Availability
Never or Almost Never Available

Other Names
Common Names
Alaska Rein Orchid

Sources include: Wikipedia. All text shown in the "About" section of these pages is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. Plant observation data provided by the participants of the California Consortia of Herbaria, Sunset information provided by Jepson Flora Project. Propogation from seed information provided by the Santa Barbara Botanical Garden from "Seed Propagation of Native California Plants" by Dara E. Emery. Sources of plant photos include CalPhotos, Wikimedia Commons, and independent plant photographers who have agreed to share their images with Calscape. Other general sources of information include Calflora, CNPS Manual of Vegetation Online, Jepson Flora Project, Las Pilitas, Theodore Payne, Tree of Life, The Xerces Society, and information provided by CNPS volunteer editors, with special thanks to Don Rideout. Climate data used in creation of plant range maps is from PRISM Climate Group, Oregon State University, using 30 year (1981-2010) annual "normals" at an 800 meter spatial resolution.

Links:   Jepson eFlora Taxon Page  CalPhotos  Wikipedia  Calflora

Sign in to your Calscape Account X

Once signed in, you'll be able to access any previously saved plant lists or create new ones.

Email Address

Sign In

Copyright © 1999-2014 California Native Plant Society. All rights reserved.