GIANT RATTLESNAKE PLANTAIN
Giant Rattlesnake Plantain
The name Giant Rattlesnake Plantain (Goodyera oblongifolia) sounds a bit ominous, conjuring images of a plant from Little Shop of Horrors. In reality, this State of Maine designated endangered plant is quite beautiful and harmless, offering up a striking foliage images for those lucky enough to find these plants in and around cedar stands in the Pine State, as well as northern New Brunswick. This species is on the southern limit of its northern range and as such, is likely to be affected by climate change in this region.
This plantain has been a focal species in our efforts to train staff to recognize potential rare plant habitat amongst the working forest. While our staff have located over 35 populations of these plants in northern Maine, this particular site was discovered by the Dr. Neil Thompson, Professor of Forestry at the University of Maine, while conducting research with students on our land base. Thompson had been invited to one of our Rare Plant Habitat Prescreening training sessions and had known our company was interested learning about the ecology of this and a whole host of other uncommon plants in the region. His addition to our Conservation Program not only adds to a better understanding of where these plants like to live, but also uncovers a few other plants of interest in that same site. A botanical hotspot!