Herb. Raf., 44. 1833.
Plants 15–65 cm. Roots few–several, spreading to descending, mostly to 0.75 cm diam., slender to stout. Leaves, basal, spreading, obovate, 2–5 × 1–2 cm. Spikes secund to tightly spiraled, 8–10 flowers per cycle of spiral; rachis glabrous to sparsely pubescent, trichomes capitate to clavate, glands obviously stalked. Flowers white; sepals somewhat spreading, distinct to base, elliptic, 5 × 1 mm; lateral sepals white throughout, apex acuminate; petals lanceolate, slightly oblique, 5 × 1 mm; lip white with green or yellowish green center, ovate to oblong, 5 × 2.5 mm, apex dilated, its margin crisped-crenate, pubescent; veins obscure; basal calli erect, short-pointed, mostly to 1 mm; viscidium linear-lanceolate; ovary mostly 3 mm. Seeds monoembryonic.
e North America.
Varieties 2 (2 in the flora).
|1||Flowers laxly arranged on spike (ratio of spike length/flower number equal to or greater than 2.3); inflorescence capitate-pubescent; leaves usually persisting through anthesis.||Spiranthes lacera var. lacera|
|1||Flowers densely arranged on spike (ratio of spike length/flower number less than 2.3); entire plant essentially glabrous; leaves usually absent at anthesis.||Spiranthes lacera var. gracilis|