Hillside Nursery

Growers of Lady-Slipper Orchids and select Woodland Wildflowers.

Cypripedium Orchids

Cypripediums (Lady-Slippers)

Lady-Slippers (Cypripedium) are a stunning group of hardy orchids, and one of the easiest of the hardy orchids to grow. In the shade garden they put on a yearly show that is unmatched - a celebration of spring that often stops one in one's tracks. Their blooms are ancient and seem to have the power to stir something deep inside us.

For many years, and even today, there persists the notion that lady-slipper orchids are too difficult to grow and should be left to the experts. With the availability of nursery propagated plants, (and when one starts with plants from a reliable source) this is no longer the case. With proper care in planting and site location (as with any perennial you value), Lady-Slippers will not only grow, but over time will form large clumps which tend to be very long-lived.

If you're interested in trying to grow lady-slippers but are unsure, we recommend starting with one of the easier forms and then see how it goes for you. Of our list below all are relatively easy except for Cyp. reginae. Much of our business over the years has been from repeat customers, many of whom have started slow and have gone on to build large collections.

Please Note: These are NOT tropical orchids.

If you're not sure what zone you live in check here.

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Cypripedium candidum

Cypripedium candidum

SMALL WHITE LADY-SLIPPER

Cypripedium candidum is a North American native. A little smaller than a yellow lady-slipper flower, it has a white pouch and greenish -yellow tendrils streaked with brown.

Zones 3-6. 16-24 in. Light shade, cool moist rich well-drained alkaline soil.

We are offering Blooming-sized plants with at least one large blooming stem and well- developed root system.

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Cypripedium pubescens

Cypripedium pubescens

LARGE YELLOW LADY-SLIPPER

Large deep-yellow flowers with long yellow-to-brown corkscrew lateral petals. Probably the easiest native orchid to grow, it will form large clumps of over 20 blooms in time when happy. It is the first species cyp to bloom in late April or early May here for us, blooming over a 2-3 week period. Native from Minnesota to the Canadian Maritimes in the north, and south from Missouri to Georgia. In the south it is usually found in cool rich woods and coves where there is shade most of the day, though in the north it is often found in more open conditions, sometimes in full sun. In the wild it grows in both sub-acid and circumneutral soil, and with a more moderate moisture supply than the other Lady-slippers.

Zones 3-7. 14-24 in. Light to part shade, moist rich well-drained soil, with approximately neutral pH.

We are offering Extra large (XL) multi-stemmed plants with at least one large blooming stem and well-developed root stystems.

  View additional images here

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Cypripedium Pubescens (close Up) 3
Cypripedium Pubescens (close Up) 2
Cypripedium Pubescens (close Up)
Cypripedium Pubescens (clump Top View)

 
Cypripedium reginae pink

Cypripedium reginae

SHOWY LADY-SLIPPER

Elegant rose-pink and white flowers. Blooms here for us in late May into June starting just before C. kentuckiense. Large plants may offer a succession of blooms lasting up to three weeks. Not the easiest of the lady-slippers to grow, but really not that difficult if given the right placement. Native from Newfoundland to Saskatchewan, North Dakota, and as far south as Missouri and Alabama. Historically a disjunct community was reported in western China. In the wild it is usually found growing in cool moist-to-wet neutral or limestone soils in open fens and bog (always above the water table), as well as moist rich wooded slopes and around seeps. When found in wet sites the conditions are highly oxygenated, never stagnant.

Zones 3-7. 18-30 in. Part sun, moist rich well-drained neutral soil that does not dry out. High open shade, cool moist (but not wet or stagnant) soil, with around a neutral pH. We are offering 4 to 5 year old plants that should bloom the first year but may require an additional year.

A tip for handling this plant: The short coarse leaf hairs of the Showy Lady-slipper are reported to cause dermatitis similar to poison ivy for some people. Although we have never had a problem or know anyone that has, care may be advised in handling plants during the summer growing season.

We are offering Blooming-sized plants with with at least one large blooming stem and well-developed root systems.

 

  View additional images here

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Cypripedium Reginae Pink (front)
Cypripedium Reginae Pink (garden 1)
Cypripedium Reginae Pink (garden 2)
Cypripedium Reginae Pink (nursery Bed)

 
Cypripedium reginae albolabium

Cypripedium reginae var. albolabium

WHITE SHOWY LADY-SLIPPER (aka: 'The White Queen')

This is a very rare form of the Showy Lady-Slipper with pure white flowers. It is one of the most outstanding plants we are offering. These are some of the first generation plants from a very strong-growing parent plant. When happy, they will grow into large clumps that will bloom over a period of several weeks.

Zones 3-8. 16-24 in. Part sun, moist rich well-drained neutral soil that does not dry out. High open shade, cool & moist (but not wet or stagnant) soil, with around a neutral pH. The roots of C. reginae tend to grow horizontally just below the soil surface so it is important to keep a layer of mulch around the plants. Root zones of older plants can be as large as three feet round.

We are offering Blooming-sized plants with at least one large blooming stem and well-developed root system.

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Cypripedium Reginae Albolabium (blooming Seedlings)
Cypripedium Reginae Albolabium (nursery Clump)
Cypripedium Reginae Albolabium (seedlings Flowering In Nursery)
Cypripedium Reginae Albolabium (small Stand)

 

Cypripediums: Hybrids (Hybrid Lady-slippers)

While the purists often gravitate to growing the species, there's a lot to be said for the value of hybrids in the garden. All the same qualities of the species still apply here but, for many, we also have the addition of some new colors along with hybrid vigor. 

We are also really excited about a number of new multi-cross hybrids coming along.  These plants have exceptional vigor which makes them a bit easier to grow in the garden.  

Cypripedium Cleo Pinkepank

Cypripedium 'Cleo Pinkepank'

(C. kentuckiense x. C. hotei)

Cypripedium hotei is a dark purple Asian form from a small region in Japan. When crossed with C. kentuckiense, you get beautiful medium to dark pink blooms that have dark pink hoods and tendrils. A few plants will have darker purple blooms. Bloom size is similar to Philipp. Like Philipp, bloom color can be temperature dependent: darker in cold weather lighter in warmer weather. Blooms mid-season.

Zones 4-7. 11-23 in. Light shade, cool moist rich well-drained soil.

We are offering Extra large (XL) multi-stemmed plants with at least one large blooming stem and well-developed root stystems.

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Cypripedium Cleo Pinkepank (rarer Dark Form)

 
Cypripedium hyb PK x MAC ALBA

Cypripedium 'Edie'

'(C. pubescens x C. kentuckiense) x Macranthos Alba'

A few years ago we started doing a lot of experimental crosses with hybrids. Now the plants from those seeds are starting to bloom and the results are quite interesting. We've noticed that when the mother plant (i.e. the plant that makes the seed) is a hybrid, there can be quite a lot of variability and this batch is no exception. This spring there were dark pink, faint pink, white and even a couple yellows similar to pubescens that showed up in the same batch, which makes sense given the parent plants. Instead of trying to sort them out, we're offering them at a reduced price. These are easy to grow given the extraordinary hybrid vigor, but are also a nice plant for the collector.

Zones 4-7. 12-16 in. Light shade, cool, moist, rich well-drained soil.

We are offering Blooming-sized plants with at least one large blooming stem and well developed root system.

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Cypripedium Hyb PK X MAC ALBA 3
Cypripedium Hyb PK X MAC ALBA 4

 
Cypripedium Gabriela

Cypripedium 'Gabriela'

(C. kentuckiense x. C. fasciolatum)

Gabriela is a hybrid of the two largest yellow lady-slippers, C. kentuckiense from North America and C. fasciolatum from Asia. Therefore, it is a very robust, large yellow-flowering lady-slipper. The pouch is a bit more rounded than C. kentuckiense and the hood stands more upright. The hood and tendrils are a beautifully striped brown and yellow. Blooms mid-season.

Zones 4-7, 11-23 in. Light shade, cool moist rich well-drained soil.


We are offering Extra large (XL) multi-stemmed plants with at least one large blooming stem and well-developed root stystems.

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Available Spring 2017
Cypripedium Gabriela (another View)
Cypripedium Gabriela (clump)

 
Cypripedium kristi lyn

Cypripedium 'Kristi Lyn'

New!
C. Pubescens x C. henryi

A very vigorous and lovely hybrid with a large yellow pouch and beautiful light-brown hood and tendrils. Looks very similar to Cypripedium pubescens, and with henryi as a parent, there is always a possibility that mature plants could have two flowers per stalk.

Zones 3-6. 16-20 in. Light shade, cool moist rich well-drained soil.

We are offering Blooming-sized plants with at least one large blooming stem and well-developed root system.

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Cypripedium Philipp

Cypripedium 'Philipp'

(C. macranthos x C. kentuckiense)

The flowers of this particular (macranthos X kentuckiense) hybrid are the shape and size of kentuckiense but the color is a soft pink to light purple (darker in cold weather, lighter in warmer weather) and the sepals and petals tend to be a rich burgundy. This is a tall, large-leafed plant that is very heat tolerant and easy to grow. Blooms mid season before C. kentuckiense.

Zones 3-7. 12-16 in. Light shade, cool moist rich well-drained soil, with approximately neutral ph. View additional images here

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Cypripedium Philipp (cluster)
Cypripedium Philipp (close Up Single)
Cypripedium Philipp (large Group)
Cypripedium Philipp (large Stand)

 
Cypripedium pubescens x pkparv

Cypripedium 'Pubescens x PKParv'

C. Pubescens x ((C. pubescens x C. kentuckiense) x C. parviflorum var. makasin)

We croseed Pubescens with PKParv which is a tri-cross between the three eastern North American yellow lady-slippers. The first cross, PK, has been an outstanding plant from carefully selected parentage. To this, we have added a strong-growing C. parviflorum var. makasin with a deep yellow pouch and dark brown, spiraled tendrils.

The resulting quadruple crosses are somewhat variable plants with medium-sized yellow blooms and a vigorous growth habit. It blooms mid-season.

Zones 3-6. 16-20 in. Light shade, cool moist rich well-drained soil.

We are offering 2 sizes:

  • Near-Blooming plants have a well-developed root system and are at least 1-2 years away from blooming.
  • Blooming-sized plants with at least one large blooming stem and well developed root system.

 

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Blooming Sized - $38.00  
Near Blooming - $20.00  
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Cypripedium Alba Sabine

Cypripedium 'Sabine Alba' aka 'Sabine Pastel'

(C. fasciolatum x C. macranthos alba)

Sabine Alba is a rare and beautiful hybrid with a very large egg-sized white or cream-colored pouch.

Zones 4-7. 12-18 in. Light shade, cool moist rich well-drained soil.

We are offering Blooming-sized plants with at least one large blooming stem and well developed root system.

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Cypripedium Sarah Louise

Cypripedium 'Sarah Louise'

(C. Ulla Silkens x C. reginae)

Sarah Louise has reginae back-crossed into Ulla Silkens, which is C. flavum x C. reginae. I like trying back-crosses and this one has done well. It has maintained the strong growth habit of the first cross and has produced a wide range of blooms -- from pure white to light pink, white with pink spotting, all the way to deep pink. Easier to grow than straight C. reginae, these will form large clumps reaching up to 36 inches tall. This is an end-of-the-season bloomer.

Zones 3-6. 30-36 in. Light shade, cool moist rich well-drained soil.

We are offering Blooming-to-Near-Blooming-sized plants with well-developed root systems. We suspect that about 30% of these will bloom, but some will not. Those that don't bloom will still be nice-sized plants and should bloom the following year.

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Cypripedium Sarah Louise (contrasted)
Cypripedium Sarah Louise (clump)
Cypripedium Sarah Louise (budded)

 
Cypripedium hyb PKP x MAC

Cypripedium 'Wilson'

'((C. pubescens x C. kentuckiense) x C. pubescens)) x Macranthos'

Another experimental cross, this quadruple cross also has great hybrid vigor. They are very similar to C. 'Philipp' and like Philipp the pink can vary from a light faded pink to a darker almost magenta.

Zones 4-7. 12-16 in. Light shade, cool, moist, rich well-drained soil.

We are offering Blooming-sized plants with at least one large blooming stem and well developed root system.

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