Detailed structures of the active polysaccharides extracted from the leaf and stem cell walls and mucilage of Dendrobium huoshanense are determined by using various techniques, including chromatographic, spectroscopic, chemical, and enzymatic methods. The mucilage polysaccharide exhibits specific functions in activating murine splenocytes to produce several cytokines including IFN-gamma, IL-10, IL-6, and IL-1alpha, as well as hematopoietic growth factors GM-CSF and G-CSF. However, the deacetylated mucilage obtained from an alkaline treatment fails to induce cytokine production. The structure and bioactivity of mucilage components are validated by further fractionation. This is the first study that provides clear evidence for the structure and activity relationship of the polysaccharide in D. huoshanense.