Lady Slippers are in Bloom at Lindy Point
The most admired of all West Virginia wildflowers, the Lady Slipper is a variety of orchid that grows wild in cool, bog-like forests throughout the state. Fortunately for us, there is just such a location in the nearby Blackwater Falls State Park. We heard this illusive flower was about to bloom on the Lindy Point trail so we took Rt 32 north for 12 miles from Golden Anchor Cabins to Blackwater Falls so see if we could get a picture of one in bloom.
Lindy Point Trail
From the parking at the edge of Canaan Loop Road, it is a easy third mile trail all the way out to the lookout. There is very little elevation drop and will suit pretty much anyone that wants to take a walk in the woods. Be aware that, with all the recent spring storms, the trail is pretty muddy right now. Prepared for all situations, my wife and I were both in sandals. But we forged on! We began seeing flowers about half way down the trail. The ladies didn't disappoint! We saw a dozen of the lady slippers in full bloom and at least two dozen more just coming out. After getting our fill of flower gazing we decided to finish the trail and take a peek at the overlook. The vibrant spring green filled the ravine from end to end. Locals say that a lady slipper sighting will bring you luck all day. If you're visiting us this spring and you need a little West Virginia luck, add this little trail to your list while the ladies are out.
A Little Info About the Lady Slipper
They are named for their resemblance to a delicate pair of feminine slippers. The single pink or white bloom shyly hangs from a slender stem between its two thick leaves. This hardy perennial flower withstands our harsh winters and blossoms right around Memorial Day. An interesting fact about the lady slipper is it has a symbiotic relationship with the fungus found in the cool, dark places in the forest. The fungus opens the flower's seeds and passes nutrients to it. Once the flower matures, the fungus will then pull nutrients from the roots of the lady slipper. Consequently these flowers, which are on the endangered list, cannot be transplanted.