Maine has four species of the orchid known as the Lady’s Slipper: The Pink and Yellow Lady’s Slippers are uncommon; the Ram’s Head and Showy Lady’s Slippers are rare. (Yes, “Showy Lady’s Slipper” is the real name.)

The problem is that these attractive plants not only require special conditions to grow, but humans like to collect them.

Lady’s Slippers need soil that contains the mycorrhizae fungus; the plant must carry on a symbiotic affair with that fungus to obtain the energy and nutrients it needs.

The image here is of a Pink Lady’s Slipper. (Brooklin, Maine)