Listera australis
Southern twayblade

Listera australis
Listera australis
Wiki Commons, GNU
Britton & Brown
Botanical name: Listera australis
Common name: Southern twayblade
Group: monocot
Family: Orchidaceae
Growth type: forb/herb
Duration: perennial
Origin: native
Plant height: 1.5 - 3 dm
Foliage: 2 opposite leaves, mid-stem
Flower: reddish or greenish-purple, in a terminal raceme, lip 10 mm, deeply cleft into linear setaceous porrect lobes
Flowering time: April-early May; seed capsules dehisced and broken up by end of May
Habitat: Shaded bogs and wet woods, mainly on the coastal plain; sphagnous thickets
Range in New Jersey: Middle and Pine Barrens district
Heritage ranking, if any: S2, listed Pinelands
Misc. USDA lists as a facultative wetland species. Usually occurs in wetlands (estimated probability 67%-99%), but occasionally found in non-wetlands.

This plant may be somewhat more common than once thought; the difficulty in finding this plant may be due more to its size and coloration and flowering time.

Stone notes: "In 1818 Barton states that the plant is 'very rare in the dark swampy wood bordering a road leading from Kaighn's Point to the Woodbury road'...Just how many stations were known to the older botanists I cannot say, but they all seem to have been in the immediate vicinity of Camden, and all seem to have been covered by the encroachment of the city and adjoining towns. It was therefore, a matter of no small interest when Mr. Geo. W. Bassett, on June 1, 1908, found a specimen of Listera in a cedar swamp on Alberson's entirely new locality. Possibly further search in cedar swamps will result in its discovery elsewhere." (376)