Six Reasons Why Orchids Are Cool

Think you can tell the difference between an orchid and a praying mantis? Or an orchid and a sugar flower? Here are six fun facts on Orchidaceae—one of the largest, most diverse, and most beloved of all plant families.


Orchids are Cool

An edible orchid in an ice sphere adorns a cocktail from chef Daniel Boulud, marthastewart.com

Why, yes, that's an orchid in my cocktail

Noted French chef Daniel Boulud paired with a mixologist to come up with a white cosmopolitan recipe that calls for elderflower liqueur and a frozen orchid sphere.


Orchids are Cool

The “aromatic” Platanthera obtusata. Photo by Jason Hollinger [CC 2.0]

File this under “orchids are clever”

Researchers have discovered that a bog orchid (Platanthera obtusata) lures its pollinator—tiger mosquitoes—by giving off a smell similar to human body odor.


Orchids are Cool

Sugar Cymbidium orchid by Robert Haynes. Photo ©Tony Harris

Have your orchid and eat it, too

London-based sugar artist Robert Haynes specializes in creating, and teaching others how to make, “botanically correct sugar flowers.”


Orchids are Cool

Orchid mantis fools pollinators, via Frupus [CC 2.0]

Bee careful…

Entomologists are studying the evolution of a praying mantis that looks like an orchid. The female Malaysian orchid mantis (Hymenopus coronatus) attracts orchid pollinators such as bees—and then eats them.


Orchids are Cool

Gift a loved one with a really special orchid.

(Your name here) orchid

A Virginia orchid grower will register a new orchid hybrid in your name with the Royal Horticultural Society (the official international register) for $1,500.


Orchids are Cool

Out-of-sight, out-of-mind... until bloom time.

Orchid boarding school

Some nurseries will care for your orchids if you’re busy or on vacation, or simply prefer to have experts raise them until the plants are ready to bloom. 

 

Author: 
Renee T.
Title: 
Editor
Published: 
January 31, 2017