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New Hampshire State Wildflower

Pink Lady's Slipper Cypripedium acaule Adopted: May 13, 1991
New Hampshire state wildflower
New Hampshire State Wildflower: Pink Lady's Slipper

Right out of the chute, on January 3, 1991, State Senator Susan McLane introduced Senate Bill No. 40 (SB40).

The measure proposed designating the pink lady's slipper as the official state wildflower of New Hampshire. Of course the lilac would maintain its position as official state flower.

McLane noted, as an aside, that the lilac wasn't really a flower anyway. It was a bush. It wasn't a New Hampshire native either. Fortunately for the lilac, New Hampshire had not yet codified an official state native!

Sen. Susan McLane, R-Concord, filed the floral bill. It wouldn't alter the lilac's status as state flower unless it revises it to "state tame flower." McLane points out that the lilac isn't a flower, but a bush that's not a New Hampshire native.

(Associated Press, "The Concord Monitor", 1991)

After its introduction, Senate Bill No. 40 was referred to the Senate Committee on the Environment.

The Senate took its time with SB40 but on February 2, 1991, a full vote approved the measure and passed in on to the House of Representatives.

Yes, SB40 was approved by the House of Representatives. It was approved on April 23, 1991.


In the year of Our Lord one thousand nine hundred and ninety-one

AN ACT making the pink lady's slipper the state wildflower.

Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:

1 Purpose. The purpose of this act is to designate the pink lady's slipper, a native New Hampshire wildflower, as the official state wildflower. This designation shall not affect the designation of the purple lilac as the state flower.

2 New Section; State Wildflower. Amend RSA 3 by inserting after section 16 the following new section:

3:17 State Wildflower. The pink lady's slipper, Cypripedium acaule, is hereby designated as the official state wildflower of New Hampshire.

3 Effective Date. This act shall take effect 60 days after its passage.

When Governor Judd Greg signed Senate Bill No. 40 of May 13, 1991, the pink lady's slipper was adopted as the official wildflower of the State of New Hampshire.

  • Cypripedium acaule's cousin, Cypripedium reginae, is the official flower of the State of Minnesota.
  • The official state flower (Syringa vulgaris) of New Hampshire is the purple lilac.


Associated Press. "Pending State Legislation Not All Lofty." The Concord Monitor. 14 Jan. 1991. Web. 19 Mar. 2016.

McLane, Susan. "1991 Chaptered Law: 0106." New Hampshire State Senate. New Hampshire General Court, 13 May 1991. Web. 28 Sept. 2005.

Perry, Amanda. "'Legislator, Activist Dies'" The Concorde Monitor. 14 Feb. 2005. Web. 19 Mar. 2016.

"Section 3:17 State Wildflower." State of New Hampshire Revised Statutes Online. New Hampshire General Court, Mar. 2016. Web. 20 Mar. 2016.

Shearer, Benjamin F. and Barbara S. State Names, Seals, Flags and Symbols: A Historical Guide Third Edition, Revised and Expanded. Westport, Conn: Greenwood Press, 3 Sub edition, 2001.

Additional Information

Pink Lady's Slipper (Cypripedium acaule Ait.): Plant of the Week from the United States Department of Agriculture's Forest Service.

Plant Profile for Cypripedium acaule Ait. (Moccasin Flower): USDA, NRCS. 2004. The PLANTS Database, Version 3.5 (http://plants.usda.gov). National Plant Data Center, Baton Rouge, LA 70874-4490 USA.

Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center: Website for the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin, Texas.

Transplanting pink lady's-slipper (Cypripedium acaule)adobe document: From the New Hampshire Natural Heritage Bureau.

State wildflowers: Complete list of official state wildflowers from NETSTATE.COM

More symbols & emblems: Complete list of official New Hampshire state symbols from NETSTATE.COM.

Wildflowers of Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont in Color
Wildflowers of

Alan Bessette

Wildflowers of Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont in Color, by Alan Bessette. 167 pages. Publisher: Syracuse University Press (January 1, 2001)

A field guide that will give nature enthusiasts instant access to the diverse and beautiful flora of these New England states.

Containing nearly 400 photographs and concise descriptions, it is written in easy-to-follow nontechnical language. Color illustrations have been carefully selected for their scientific accuracy as well as their aesthetic quality.

Native Plants of the Northeast: A Guide for Gardening and Conservation
Native Plants
of the Northeast

Donald J. Leopold

Native Plants of the Northeast: A Guide for Gardening and Conservation, by Donald J. Leopold. 99 pages. Publisher: Timber Press, Incorporated; 56037th edition (February 1, 2005)

If you've always wanted to garden with native plants, this book is for you. With entries for nearly 700 species of native trees, shrubs, vines, ferns, grasses, and wildflowers from the northeastern quarter of the U.S. and eastern Canada, its comprehensive horticultural coverage is unsurpassed by any other single volume.

Each plant description includes information about cultivation and propagation, ranges, and hardiness. An appendix recommends particular plants for difficult situations, as well as attracting butterflies, hummingbirds, and other wildlife. Illustrated throughout with color photographs.

State Botanical Symbols
State Botanical Symbols
Alan McPherson

State Botanical Symbols, by Alan McPherson. 132 pages. AuthorHouse (June 10, 2013)

Alan McPherson is a naturalist who resides in northern Indiana and enjoys traveling and learning about the botanical resources our vast country.

In this reference book over 200 state botanical symbols are presented with informative text that highlights their adoptive legislation, botanical and social history. From the white pine of Maine's northeastern forests, westward to the yellow hibiscus of Hawaii's Polynesian islands, our state's official botanical symbols are as uniquely diverse as the terrain and character of the 50 states themselves.

State Birds and Flowers Coloring Book
State Birds and Flowers
Coloring Book
U.S. State Flowers in Counted Cross Stitch
U.S. State Flowers
in Counted Cross Stitch

Gerda Bengtsson

State Birds and Flowers Coloring Book by Annika Bernhard

51 accurately detailed, copyright-free renderings include national bird (eagle) and flower (rose) plus 50 state birds and flowers.

U. S. State Flowers in Cross Stitch by Gerda Bengtsson - Botanically correct cross stitch designs of state flowers of the 50 States.

Quilting Flowers of the States by Sue Harvey - A lovely 12-inch flower block for each of the 50 states. Techniques used are piecing, appliqué, paper-piecing and three-dimensional techniques.

Plants, Seeds & Flowers: Bulbs, seeds, plants, fertilizer, plant containers, garden tools and more.