Prasophyllum frenchii

Slaty Leek-orchid

Stout erect perennial herb growing from a fleshy tuber to form loose colonies. Fleshy green to reddish green stem. Flowers upside down with lip (labellum) on top.

Additional information

  • FamilyOrchidaceae
  • StoreyLower storey
  • Size15-60 cm high
  • Plant groupingOrchids
  • LeavesSingle erect fleshy green leaf with purplish base, round in cross section, to 60 cm long, closely sheathed, free section to 18 cm, erect and non-sheathing. Leaf withers at flowering.
  • Flower colourVariable, green with reddish markings or reddish; lip green with white or pink edges
  • Flowering timeOctober to November
  • FlowersDense spike of 20-60 scented flowers to 8 mm across. Central sepal egg-shaped, pointed tip; erect lateral sepals broad, free; petals narrow, all incurved. Lip broad, base pouched, margins wavy, recurved near middle; short, raised crescent-shaped ridge.
  • Bird attractingNo
  • Butterfly attractingNo
  • Frog habitatNo
  • Growing conditionsMoist soils near swampy areas in grassy woodlands. Full sun, semi shade.
  • Garden useUse of orchids in gardens is not recommended, unless they already occur naturally, in which case they need to be protected. Removing orchids from the bush usually results in their death and further depletes remaining wild orchid populations.
  • Commercially availableNever
  • Conservation statusEndangered within Victoria, at risk of extinction. Presumed extinct within the Shire
  • Aboriginal Use Food - tuber
  • Related speciesSimilar to Corunastylis. Distinguish by the claw-less labellum and the leaf sheath which opens well below the flower spike rather than just below it. Flowering is spring rather than summer/autumn.
Photographer/s: 1, 3 Colin Rowan, RetiredAussies ©; 2 Mischa Rowan, RetiredAussies ©

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