Orchids for Chinese New Year

It’s the Year of the Ram, and Chinese New Year is a great time for orchids. For millennia, orchids, especially Cymbidiums, have been treasured in East Asia for their rich fragrances and graceful foliage. Nowadays, they are popular gifts and decorations for Chinese New Year, also known as Lunar New Year, or Spring Festival. Confucius cemented orchids into Chinese culture over 2500 years ago by praising their nobility and sweet fragrance. The first three photos below show modern examples of these celebrated Chinese orchids. These traditional varieties are smaller, and more expensive, than most modern Cymbidium hybrids.

Cymbidium ensifolium Keiran small, light green red and white flowers, Chinese orchid species in gold white and black traditonal flowerpot, Pacific Orchid Expo 2011, San Francisco, CaliforniaCymbidium goeringii 'Setsuzan' Pacific Orchid Expo 2010, traditional Chinese Orchid species with green yellow white red flowers, graceful variegated leaves, San Francisco, CaliforniaCymbidium sinense, Chinese orchid species with red and white flowers, Pacific Orchid Expo 2014, San Francisco, California

Lunar New Year is celebrated in China, Japan, Korea, Southeast Asia, and in Asian communities throughout the world. Cymbidiums are always popular for the holiday, but so are Moth Orchids, Dendrobiums, Cattleyas, and others. The orchid hybrids pictured below are all great choices to wish happiness and prosperity in the new year. Read about other lucky flowers and fruits for Chinese New Year here. Happy Lunar New Year! Gung hay fat choy!

Dendrobium hybrid with purple and white flowers, Orchids in the Park 2012, San Francisco, CaliforniaPhalaenopsis hybrid, Moth Orchid flower, Kawamoto Orchid Nursery, Honolulu, HawaiiCymbidium Chuk Nam Moi, orchid hybrid with yellow red and white flowers, Pacific Orchid Expo 2010, San Francisco, California

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One Comment on “Orchids for Chinese New Year”

  1. Trevor H. Says:

    Very nice article, just what I needed.
    Nice photos too.