Archive for the 'Buying Tips' Category

Santa Barbara Orchid Estate

Thursday, April 12th, 2012

When I think of Santa Barbara, I think of Cymbidiums. Recently Dave traveled there for work, and he found plenty to photograph at the Santa Barbara Orchid Estate (SBOE). With 5 acres (2 hectares) of gardens in a mild coastal climate, it’s no surprise that Cymbidiums thrive there. But Cymbidiums are only part of the […]

Be My Orchid Valentine

Tuesday, February 7th, 2012

Orchid make beautiful, elegant, and fashionable Valentine gifts. Whether for love or friendship, they’re popular holiday flowers. However, picking the best one can be tricky. Orchid buying tips can be helpful for smart shoppers, but many orchid purchases aren’t about logic. Most of us have succumbed to the impulse buy. For me, it usually involves […]

Orchid Gift Guide

Sunday, December 18th, 2011

As the world’s largest and most diverse plant family, orchids provide a great way to personalize your gift choice. There’s an orchid that’s right for just about everyone. If you’re buying a gift for an over-waterer, try a Cymbidium, Masdevallia, Miltonia, Paph, or Vanda. These types need daily watering. For an under-waterer, try a Cattleya, […]

Orchid Calendars

Friday, November 4th, 2011

Even if you don’t have a green thumb, you can have beautiful orchids all year with orchid wall calendars. The American Orchid Society’s 2012 calendar contains a year’s worth of mini orchids. The Orchid Conservation Alliance’s 2012 calendar (front cover pictured below) has photos and stories of a dozen of the world’s most endangered orchids. […]

Orchid Starter Kits

Thursday, August 25th, 2011

Orchids starter kits have been around for years, often sold alongside starter kits for other tropical plants. They’re a clever sales solution for tropical areas like Hawaii, where strict rules apply for plant export. The plants are packaged by certified nurseries, and they can be quickly checked by airport agricultural inspectors. Sometimes they’re baby orchids […]

Hybrid Vigor

Wednesday, May 4th, 2011

Ever since orchids exploded in popularity in Europe in the 1850’s, orchid lovers have crossbred them. By blending genes of different species, and then choosing the best and sturdiest offspring, breeders have developed combinations with hybrid vigor. Complementary traits from both parents produce tougher plants. Hybrids are easy to grow and flower, and hardy enough […]

Orchids for Mother’s Day

Tuesday, April 26th, 2011

Orchids are top picks for Mother’s Day gifts. Whether you’re buying an orchid for mom to keep short-term or long-term, there’s no lack of choices. Those sold in supermarkets and department stores are hybrids, bred to be tough. Phals are the most common variety. Their blooms can last for months with good basic orchid care. […]

Vanilla Valentine

Friday, February 4th, 2011

Want to buy your valentine an orchid? Try vanilla! Don’t get me wrong; I’m not suggesting you buy a vanilla plant. As you can see from the healthy specimens at Vallarta Botanical Gardens, these heavy vines are best left to climb up tropical trees or hang in greenhouses. However, it is easy to buy a […]

Gift Plants

Friday, December 17th, 2010

Blooming orchids make wonderful holiday gifts, and smart shoppers start by checking out these buying tips. Even after you’ve picked the right orchid, however, you may have a problem. Some people are terrified of orchids. I’ve seen an orchid gift provoke such fear in a friend’s eyes that it made me wonder if he would […]

OCA Calendar

Wednesday, October 20th, 2010

Check out the cover of this great 2011 wall calendar from the Orchid Conservation Alliance (OCA.) I’ve blogged about the OCA’s great work to conserve orchids and their habitats. Now you can support them by buying this beautiful monthly calendar. It’s full of hundreds of photos of incredible scenery from Ecuador’s cloud forests, including lots […]