The Most Popular Types of Orchids
There are tens of thousands of orchid varieties; to know them all is almost impossible. Some of the exotic versions are rarely ever seen outside the green house, while the more common varieties can be found throughout many households and flower shops. Although there are numerous types of orchids the ones presented below are frequently cultivated and beloved throughout the world.
This orchid flower is super popular due to its big, beautiful long-lasting blooms. In Greek phalaina means “moth” and opsis means “appearance” hence why Phalaenopsis orchids are also referred to as moth orchids. These orchids originate from tropical places such as India, Nepal, China and Taiwan. Phalaenopsis orchid can be found in abundant of shades but commonly they are purple and lavender. The only color you will not find in the moth family is a blue orchid.
You can call it the official orchid of prom season! Why? Because this popular orchid is best known for its use in corsages. The flowers from this species of orchid can last up to a few months while in soil or in a vase. This well loved orchid produces large striking flowers that come in vast variety of colors. Native to high altitudes, cymbidium can be found throughout Central and Southeast Asia.
Are you an ice cream enthusiast? Of course you are. Well you’ll be surprised to find out that the orchid is the original source of vanilla flavoring in nature (personal favorite). Vanilla orchids are vines with bright green leaves and yellow flowers. If pollinated the orchid will harvest seed pods and once cured the pods proceed to produce vanilla flavoring.
This stunning flower was accidently discovered by a horticulturist named William Cattleya, hence the name. Mainly referred to as the queen of orchids, Cattleya orchids have been a fashionable statement piece for many special occasions. Ladies in the nineteenth century used to accessorize their outfits with an oversized Cattleya corsage for extravagant social gatherings. Native to South America, Cattleya’s enjoy warm temperatures with considerable amount of bright light.
This star-shaped orchid commonly referred to, as the comet orchid is famous for the research Charles Darwin conducted on it. Darwin hypothesized that long-nosed moths were the pollinators of this beautiful orchid. Decades later now we know that Hawk Moths in fact are the sole pollinator of Angraecum’s (good looking out Darwin).
Considered the most common household orchid Dendrobium is the largest and most diverse “catch-all” orchid group. With over 1,200 species this orchid type can be found in humid, swampy or desert-like environments. As you can assume these blooms come in many different colors such as yellow, pink, lavender and white.
Do you love spiders? (Don’t worry neither do I)Even if you don’t, you’ll love this spider like orchid. The elongated spider like leg sepals make this orchid visually enticing along with petals that are yellow greenish with hints of rosy reds. Brassia orchids bloom during spring/summer months and can grow up to 2 feel long.
Derived from the Greek word Epi (on) and Dendron (tree) the name reflects the growing habit of this orchid. Epidendrum are the soldiers of all orchids, these beauties can pretty much handle any type of environment too hot, freezing nights, not enough moisture you name it will outlive it any other orchid on this list! Epidendrum’s low maintenance makes it the perfect type of orchid to grow.
With the nickname “pansy orchid” this flower doesn’t only smell like heaven but its innocent and dainty look makes it feel like heaven as well. Many have a hard time distinguishing Miltoniopsis from Miltonia orchid but the slight differences in their shape and number of leaves could help you identifying them correctly. For example, Miltoniopsis orchids have flatter pseudobulbs with one leaf compared to the rounder shape of Miltonia with two leaves.
This type of orchid is ranked among the top 5 plants for its magnificent flowers in the gardening community. This frequently blooming orchid produces large flowers in a wide verity of colors. It usually produces yellow-brown blossoms in addition to burgundy, orange, red, green and white. Native to India, Himalaya, Southeast Asia and Northern Australia Vanda orchids enjoy worm climates with abundant amount of indirect sunlight.
The list doesn’t end here, we could go on and on about orchids, like the orchid that looks like it has a monkey's face or the one that kind of looks like a duck. But those are for another time. Now that you’re familiar with few types of orchids maybe you’ll be enthused to plant some or add some to your ice cream.
By: Salome Mekantsishvili
- Danny Sanchez