Archive for the 'Conservation' Category

McBryde Garden

Tuesday, March 7th, 2017

There’s much more to Kauai’s wondrous McBryde Garden than its orchids. Here are some more photos from our recent visit, starting with Dave’s incredible picture of two rare Hawaiian Moorhens looking for lunch in a stream. We were told that they are normally very shy birds, but these two didn’t seem to mind us snapping […]

Orchids at McBryde Garden

Wednesday, February 22nd, 2017

McBryde Garden on the island of Kauai is one of Hawaii’s extraordinary places. Set in a verdant valley, it’s part of the National Tropical Botanical Garden, with a mission of conservation and research, especially for Hawaii’s endangered native flora. Dave and I were lucky enough to visit recently and enjoy its amazing sights. The garden […]

The World’s Favorite Flavor at Risk

Saturday, February 18th, 2017

Wild vanilla is disappearing. On top of that bad news, farmers in Madagascar have had poor harvests.

Poaching Orchids

Friday, January 27th, 2017

Orchid poaching is a global problem, as plants are torn from the wild for profit, or as a selfish person’s trophy. Around the Great Lakes, poaching is threatening many native plants, including orchids. True orchid lovers know that they need to keep locations secret when they find native species. If word gets out, the plants […]

An Orchid Revival in South Florida

Sunday, January 8th, 2017

The Miami Herald reports on the Million Orchid Project, which is returning native orchid species to South Florida. After years of growing seedlings in labs, scientists and volunteers are transplanting young orchids into urban areas around Miami-Dade County. It’s a big experiment in orchid conservation and citizen science. So far, over 30,000 plants from several […]

Orchid Snack Food

Saturday, November 26th, 2016

As the BBC reports, chikanda is a traditional food in parts of Zambia and Tanzania, made from the tubers of local orchids. These tubers look like little potatoes. They are cooked with peanuts and chilies into savory cakes resembling meatloaf, and called chikanda. Swedish botanist Sarina Veldman has been studying the DNA of tubers for […]

Saving Minnesota’s Rare Orchids Before It’s Too Late

Monday, November 14th, 2016

The Minnesota Landscape Arboretum is working to conserve rare native orchids. The Arboretum is building a seed bank for all of the state’s 48 native species, including the official state flower, the Showy Lady’s Slipper. The effort is part of a larger conservation project, headed by the Smithsonian Institution, to preserve seeds from all of […]

Orchids for Hillary

Monday, October 24th, 2016

AboutOrchids only dabbles in politics related to orchid conservation, and this post is no exception. If you’re an orchid lover, the only choice for president this November is Hillary Clinton. The Republican nominee would be a disastrous decision for many reasons, but the one that’s most important on this blog is saving our endangered planet. […]

Ghost Orchid Scientists Aim to Restore Rare Florida Flowers

Tuesday, August 9th, 2016

Scientists are working to restore wild populations of Florida’s native orchids, including the famous Ghost Orchid. Seedlings grown in labs are being transplanted in the Everglades. So far, results have been promising, with many young plants surviving the move. For most of the year, these bizarre, leafless orchids are simply masses of roots attached to […]

Devilish Orchid Discovery

Friday, July 15th, 2016

Scientists have discovered a devilish new orchid in Colombia. Telipogon diabolicus earns its species name from a dark maroon coloration that resembles a little demon head. So far, it’s only been found in a small patch of land in southern Colombia, and the species is considered critically endangered.