There is no denying the fact that orchids are an inspiration to artists, who skillfully attempt to capture their elegance in delicate shapes and colors. Their beauty motivates authors to write stories and novels. Fashion designers use them in creative designs for necklaces, earrings, or may even use resin to preserve the flowers forever. It is not surprising then that the conservation of orchids needs to be cannot be stressed. Thankfully, there are organizations like the North American Orchid Conservation Center at http://www.serc.si.edu established for this purpose.
Living in Florida guarantees that the Orchid hobbyist with an interest in growing some of the over 200,000 species that exist naturally, or even cultivating hybrids would have the ideal conditions in which to experiment. High humidity, warm temperatures that fluctuate widely between day and night, and the wind that arises from these changes in temperature, together with the bright light needed by some species make it ideal conditions for growth.
One way to be introduced to orchids, is to visit any of the Orchid Shows which take place near you. This year I caught the Ft. Lauderdale Show at the War Memorial and the display was spectacular. I witnessed some new and exciting hybrids such as the red/magenta phalaenopsis which is now being widely crossbred with other genera. A few years ago, there was one black orchid on exhibit. This year, several appeared in different varieties.
If you are a collector of orchids and have any rare or beautiful orchids you’d like to share, please weigh in.