• Pollinating Orchids by Foot

    AboutOrchids Apr 13, 2021 | 04:55 am

    Among many peculiar pollination strategies in the orchid family, some South African species really stand out. The small blooms of Disa chrysostachya offer nectar to entice Malachite Sunbirds to perch on their flower spikes and take a drink. But instead of attaching to their beaks as they feed, the pollen sticks to their claws. Then […]

  • Marianne North’s Orchid Artwork

    AboutOrchids Apr 8, 2021 | 04:09 am

    Marianne North was a phenomenal botanical artist of Victorian England, and you can take a virtual trip to enjoy her gallery at RBG Kew in London. Check out the two videos below, and also photos that Dave took during a visit to the UK in 2019. North’s extraordinary art includes many orchids. She traveled around […]

  • April Orchid Events

    AboutOrchids Apr 1, 2021 | 03:30 am

    We’ve suffered through the COVID19 pandemic for over a year, and there are still in-person shows listed online without any mention of basic safety precautions. It’s ridiculous, and I won’t have any part of their irresponsibility. You won’t find those shows in my list. Below are New Zealand and Australian shows which do have precautions, […]

  • Orchids Worthy of the Award of Garden Merit

    AboutOrchids Mar 26, 2021 | 04:20 am

    In the UK, Awards of Garden Merit (AGMs) are given to worthy plants, including orchids, by the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS.) AGMs are varieties which are reliable, easy to grow, and commonly sold in the UK. The three photos above represent orchids which currently have AGMs. They are Pleione formosana, Stenoglottis longifolia, and Oncidium Sharry […]

  • Spring Equinox Orchids

    AboutOrchids Mar 20, 2021 | 22:55 pm

    Lots of orchids have been blooming in our late winter garden, eager for today’s change of season. My favorite purple Zygo reliably boasts stunning flowers, shown in the first row of photos above. Their beauty is surpassed by their sweet fragrance, which is one of my favorites. The second row features a wonderful Coelogyne, which […]

  • Life Lessons from North American Orchids

    AboutOrchids Mar 18, 2021 | 03:32 am

    The Smithsonian Environmental Research Center explains the life lessons offered by North American orchids. If the Queen’s Lady Slipper can take 16 years to bloom, certainly we humans can learn to take our time. When Three Bird Orchids bloom en masse to better attract pollinators, they are exemplifying the importance of teamwork. For all that […]

  • The Science of Orchids

    AboutOrchids Mar 14, 2021 | 01:43 am

    The science of orchids is marching forwards. Taipei Times reports on cutting edge genetic discoveries that will change orchid commerce. Researchers in Taiwan, which has a large orchid industry, have identified genes to control flower color, and to prolong the life of blooms. In time, they will be able to create varieties with new colors, […]

  • Last Year’s Orchid Show

    AboutOrchids Mar 8, 2021 | 04:30 am

    Fortunately, I still have plenty of pictures to enjoy from last year’s orchid show. The Pacific Orchid Expo was spectacular, as always, in late February, 2020. A few weeks later, the San Francisco Bay Area was the first part of the nation to go into lockdown for COVID19. This year’s show was cancelled, of course. […]

  • March Orchid Events

    AboutOrchids Mar 2, 2021 | 04:42 am

    This month features several online events and a Bay Area Cymbidium sale with COVID19 precautions. March 3 – 8 American Orchid Society Spring Online Auction, fundraising auction with plants, books, supplies, collectibles, gift certificates, and more; link will go live on March 3rd March 13 Spring 2021 American Orchid Society Members Meeting, online; no fee […]

  • The Species Identification Task Force Pinpoints Orchid Names

    AboutOrchids Feb 26, 2021 | 03:47 am

    The Species Identification Task Force (SITF) sorts out difficult orchid identities. There are about 30,000 orchid species, and experts with the American Orchid Society work to verify whether awarded plants’ nametags are accurate. Whenever a species receives its first award, it’s automatically reviewed to authenticate its identity. Orchid judges may also ask for confirmation of […]