Best way to look for Orchids in WI?

It is currently spring in Wisconsin, and the ephemerals are starting to come up! I just recently became more well educated on native plants, though I’ve loved them my whole life.
I really really want to create a “bucket list” of sorts and find as many wild orchids as I can, but I’m not sure where to start! Are there any particularly good spots in South Eastern ish WI to look for them? What clues can I use to help me find them? How can I get better at identifying them? What time of spring/summer is best to look for what species?
Thanks in advance!

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Welcome to the Forum! On iNaturalist, you can use the Explore tab to search for Orchids in a boundary box you create. This will give you species names, dates observed and maybe some locations to look. Here is a URL to try if you like:


Thank you! I’ve played around with this a bit and its definitely going to be super helpful for finding good locations.
Do you have any resources for IDing native Orchids at different stages?

Check natural areas in Door County. You should be able to see quite a few species.

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Many years ago, I set out in search of MN native orchids. It took me some years to find them all, but I had a lot of fun and learned so much. So I highly recommend it.

The best local resources I know of are Welby Smith’s book Native Orchids of Minnesota and They are specific to MN, but for orchids there’s a very large overlap between MN and WI.

Good luck!


I plan on it! Visiting the Ridges last year was what spurred me to start looking for them this year! Thank you!!

What a wonderful suggestion! Thank you so so much!