• Is That Rare Plant Illegal?

    AboutOrchids Sep 29, 2020 | 04:20 am

    In The Guardian, British botanist James Wong offers tips on figuring out if that rare plant you’re buying is illegal. Rare plants, including endangered orchids, are taken from the wild by unscrupulous sellers. It’s illegal, and contributes to extinctions. In addition, wild plants are unlikely to survive in cultivation. So how can responsible gardeners know […]

  • The Equinox Blues

    AboutOrchids Sep 22, 2020 | 19:54 pm

    We’ve got the equinox blues. No, no, there aren’t any blue flowers here. These blues are the sadness kind, arising from a pandemic, climate change catastrophes, and a fascist government in this country that’s already cheating in the next election. Fortunately, pretty flowers are a great distraction. Celebrate today’s equinox, and enjoy these stunning blooms […]

  • Fuchsia Flower Power

    AboutOrchids Sep 19, 2020 | 00:40 am

    Fuchsias have lots of flower power, and are perennial garden favorites for humans and hummingbirds. They feature charming blooms which dangle like bells in soft pastel colors, or bright reds, pinks, or purples. They’re great companion plants for orchids, too. Our fuchsias, shown in the first two photos above, grow happily in the sun alongside […]

  • Orchid Species New to Science

    AboutOrchids Sep 14, 2020 | 03:03 am

    Orchids are one of the largest plant families in existence, and that family is still growing. There’s always a steady stream of orchids which are new to science. Recent discoveries include a Vanilla species from Vietnam, a Palmorchis from the Amazon, and a bright orange Dendrochilum from the Philippines. There’s also a fascinating little Corybas, […]

  • Enduring Beauty – Orchid Portraits of the RHS

    AboutOrchids Sep 8, 2020 | 01:15 am

    For over 120 years, the UK’s Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) has employed an official artist to render portraits of award-winning orchids. This stunning art is not only beautiful, but also precise in its botanical elements, making it better than photographs for discerning floral details. Since 1897, there have been nine official artists who have painted […]

  • It’s Been Six Months Since My Last Orchid Events Post

    AboutOrchids Sep 1, 2020 | 20:59 pm

    Six months ago, I did a regular post about March’s upcoming orchid events. It included a note about a few cancellations because of COVID19. I certainly had no idea how much the world would change since then. By April, almost everything was cancelled, and it would have been irresponsible for me to publicize any remaining […]

  • New Guinea’s Plants Are ‘Majestic, Stunning, Intriguing and Bizarre’

    AboutOrchids Aug 27, 2020 | 03:43 am

    As the world’s largest tropical island, New Guinea has over 13,000 plant species, more than even Madagascar or Borneo. With varied habitats, like coastal jungles, tropical rainforests, high cloud forests, and alpine grasslands, there’s incredible biodiversity. Two-thirds of the island’s species are found nowhere else. Using their botanical riches, ancient New Guineans domesticated two of […]

  • The Yolk-Yellow Orchid, Prosthechea vitellina

    AboutOrchids Aug 22, 2020 | 01:04 am

    I’m glad I splurged on this Prosthechea vitellina at the Pacific Orchid Expo in February. It was on my shopping list as a cool grower that I figured would do well here on the Northern California coast. Happily, it’s proven to be a great addition to our garden, and has settled into its new home […]

  • Fallen Flowers: Restoring Wild Orchids in India’s Western Ghats

    AboutOrchids Aug 15, 2020 | 02:56 am

    Orchid conservation takes many forms. In the Western Ghats, tropical mountain forests hold almost a third of India’s flora and fauna species. That includes hundreds of native orchid varieties, like Dendrobiums, Bulbophyllums, Habenarias, and Aerides. As deforestation threatens these species, Indian conservationists have enlisted local students to rescue orchids. Within the region’s tea, coffee, and […]

  • Why Do Orchid Names Change?

    AboutOrchids Aug 7, 2020 | 23:31 pm

    Maybe you have a grasp on the complex world of orchid names, from reading nametags to understanding awards, plus all that Latin. Well, if you think you’re done, I’m sorry. You still have to deal with orchid name changes. Why do names change? Sorting out family ties between 30,000 orchid species is no easy task, […]