Caladenia - Spider Orchids

The Spider Orchids are the largest genus of orchids in Western Australia. There are around 180 species in Caladenia with about 140 found in the south west of Western Australia. There is huge variation in size, colour and shape. Size ranges from the tiny Winter Spider Orchid (1-2cm) to the huge Giant Spider Orchid (up to 30cm).
The species on this page are divided into four groups. Within these groups, species are arranged into smaller groups based on flower similarity. Click on the thumbnails to view enter the groups, and then to view the photos.

Group 1 - The Big Spider Orchids

This group contains all the species that have long fringing on the labellum. I have called the group 'Big Spider Orchids' as most of them have large, showy flowers. There are, however, some very small species in this group.

Caladenia longicauda, speciosa, splendens, christineae - White Spider Orchids

Caladenia longicauda, speciosa, splendens, christineae - White Spider Orchids

Caladenia arenicola, georgii, paludosa, ferruginea

Caladenia arenicola, georgii, paludosa, ferruginea

Caladenia serotina - Christmas Spider Orchid

Caladenia serotina - Christmas Spider Orchid

Caladenia falcata, integra, attingens, lobata - Green Spider Orchid Group

Caladenia falcata, integra, attingens, lobata - Green Spider Orchid Group

Caladenia lorea - Blushing Spider Orchid

Caladenia lorea - Blushing Spider Orchid

Caladenia huegelii, thinicola - Grand and Scott River Spider Orchids

Caladenia huegelii, thinicola - Grand and Scott River Spider Orchids

Caladenia excelsa - Giant Spider Orchid

Caladenia excelsa - Giant Spider Orchid

Caladenia gardneri - Cherry Spider Orchid

Caladenia gardneri - Cherry Spider Orchid

Caladenia citrina - Margaret River Spider Orchid

Caladenia citrina - Margaret River Spider Orchid

Caladenia corynephora - Club-lipped Spider Orchid

Caladenia corynephora - Club-lipped Spider Orchid

Caladenia viridescens - Dunsborough Spider Orchid

Caladenia viridescens - Dunsborough Spider Orchid

Caladenia williamsiae - William's Spider Orchid

Caladenia williamsiae - William's Spider Orchid

Caladenia uliginosa - Darting Spider Orchid

Caladenia uliginosa - Darting Spider Orchid

Caladenia radiata - Ray Spider Orchid

Caladenia radiata - Ray Spider Orchid

Caladenia pectinata, heberleana, brownii - King Heberle and Karri Spider Orchids

Caladenia pectinata, heberleana, brownii, procera - King, Heberle and Karri Spider Orchids

Caladenia longiclavata, arrecta, rhomboideformis, ensata - Clubbed Spider Orchids

Caladenia longiclavata, arrecta, rhomboideformis, ensata - Clubbed Spider Orchids

Caladenia infundibularis, granitora - Funnel Web Spider Orchids

Caladenia infundibularis, granitora - Funnel Web Spider Orchids

Caladenia harringtoniae - Pink Spider Orchid

Caladenia harringtoniae - Pink Spider Orchid

Caladenia graniticola, hoffmanii - Pingaring and Hoffman's Spider Orchids

Caladenia graniticola, hoffmanii - Pingaring and Hoffman's Spider Orchids

Caladenia graminifolia - Grass-leafed Spider Orchid

Caladenia graminifolia - Grass-leafed Spider Orchid

Caladenia crebra - Arrowsmith Spider Orchid

Caladenia crebra - Arrowsmith Spider Orchid

Caladenia nivalis - Exotic Spider Orchid

Caladenia nivalis - Exotic Spider Orchid

Caladenia pholcoidea - Albany Spider Orchid

Caladenia pholcoidea - Albany Spider Orchid

Caladenia leucochila - Collie Spider

Caladenia leucochila - Collie Spider Orchid


Group 2 - The Wispy Spider Orchids

The characteristic feature of these species are the thin, wispy petals and sepals and a labellum with very short (if any) fringes. Some years ago, the name Caladenia filamentosa was applied to all the wispy spider orchids. As there were many variations, many of which formed stable populations, the species has been divided into many separate species, some of which are very similar in appearance. This makes identification quite difficult. Differences include flower size, flowering time, range of distribution, size of the labellum and colour. However, many species show large variations in colour and size anyway, which further complicates identification. Therefore, there is a good chance that some of the species listed here are not identified correctly. Those I am not totally sure about are marked with an asterisk (*). Most orchid enthusiests will refer to the Wispy Spider Orchids collectively as 'filimentosas'

Caladenia polychroma, vulgata - Joseph and Common Spider Orchids

Caladenia polychroma, vulgata - Joseph and Common Spider Orchids

Caladenia pendens, postea, hiemalis, microchila - Talbot's, Dark-tipped, Dwarf Common and Western Wispy Spider Orchids

Caladenia pendens, postea, hiemalis, microchila - Talbot's, Dark-tipped, Dwarf Common and Western Wispy Spider Orchids

Caladenia filifera, footeana, pulchra - Blood, Crimson and Slender Spider Orchid

Caladenia filifera, footeana, pulchra - Blood, Crimson and Slender Spider Orchid

Caladenia chapmanii - Chapman's Spider Orchid

Caladenia chapmanii - Chapman's Spider Orchid

Caladenia dorrienii - Cossack Spider Orchid

Caladenia dorrienii, hopperiana - Cossack and Quindanning Spider Orchids

Caladenia bicalliata - Limestone and Sandhill Spider Orchids

Caladenia bicalliata - Limestone and Sandhill Spider Orchids

Caladenia caesarea - Mustard Orchid

Caladenia caesarea - Mustard Orchid

Caladenia radialis - Drooping Spider Orchid

Caladenia radialis - Drooping Spider Orchid

Caladenia sigmoidea - Sigmoid Spider Orchid

Caladenia sigmoidea - Sigmoid Spider Orchid

Caladenia xantha - Primrose Spider Orchid

Caladenia xantha - Primrose Spider Orchid

Caladenia elegans - Elegant Spider Orchid

Caladenia elegans - Elegant Spider Orchid

Caladenia wanosa - Kalbarri Spider Orchid

Caladenia wanosa - Kalbarri Spider Orchid

Caladenia nobilis - Noble Spider Orchid

Caladenia nobilis - Noble Spider Orchid

Caladenia sp. Other Wispy Spider Orchids

Caladenia sp. - Other Wispy Spider Orchids


Group 3 - The Small Spider Orchids

This group contains several species that all have very small flowers. Most also have no fringes on the labellum.

Caladenia roei, doutchaie, cristata, brevisura - Crested Spider Orchids

Caladenia roei, doutchaie, cristata, brevisura - Crested Spider Orchids

Caladenia cairnsiana, pachychila - Zebra Orchids

Caladenia cairnsiana, pachychila - Zebra Orchids

Caladenia bryceana - Dwarf Spider Orchid

Caladenia bryceana - Dwarf Spider Orchid


Group 4 - The Other Spider Orchids

This group contains the species that do not easily fit into the other groups.

Caladenia plicata - Crab-lipped Spider Orchid

Caladenia plicata - Crab-lipped Spider Orchid

Caladenia multiclavia - Lazy Spider Orchid

Caladenia multiclavia - Lazy Spider Orchid

Caladenia macrostylis - Leaping Spider Orchid

Caladenia macrostylis - Leaping Spider Orchid

Caladenia hirta, rosea - Candy Orchids

Caladenia hirta, rosea - Candy Orchids

Caladenia flava - Cowslip

Caladenia flava - Cowslip

Caladenia latifolia, reptans, nana - Pink Fairy and Pink Fan Orchids

Caladenia latifolia, reptans, nana - Pink Fairy and Pink Fan Orchids

Caladenia marginata - White Fairy Orchid

Caladenia marginata - White Fairy Orchid

Caladenia drummondii - Winter Spider Orchid

Caladenia drummondii - Winter Spider Orchid

Caladenia discoidea - Dancing Spider Orchid

Caladenia discoidea - Dancing Spider Orchid

Caladenia barbarossa, mesocera, drakeoides - Dragon Orchids

Caladenia barbarossa, mesocera, drakeoides - Dragon Orchids

6 Responses to Caladenia - Spider Orchids

  1. I was looking at this group:
    The group "Group 1 - The Big Spider Orchids"
    "Caladenia pectinata, heberleana, brownii, procera - King, Heberle and Karri Spider Orchids"
    can not be accessed (not working) - It is a link failure

    A greeting
    Luis

  2. Hi there, i live in Bridgetown and came across a few unusual orchids today.
    They look a bit like Caladenias but they are not, the tallest one i saw was around 1 foot in height.
    I have lived here all my life 61 years and have walked the bush looking at these wonders but i have never seen this one before.
    Can someone contact me about this plant, my brother in law has many photos of it .

    • Hi Jeffrey, I would love to know where you find the Spider orchids in Bridgetown. I have lived here for about 8 years and about the only orchids I can find around town are the Cowslip's.

      • Spider orchids can be found in most areas of natural, undisturbed bush. Look for areas with not much grass or weeds. Also check areas of bush near swamps - that is a favourite habitat for orchids. I have not done a lot of searching around Bridgetown so I can't really help much in that area. You could try the swampy areas between Bridgetown and Manjimup on the main highway. The best time would be September to November.

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