Archive for the 'In the News' Category

Vanilla Boom Is Making People Crazy Rich

Thursday, September 19th, 2019

Vanilla prices have been so high that some Madagascan farmers are getting rich. Madagascar is one of the poorest countries. It’s also the world’s leading vanilla grower, producing about 80% of all vanilla beans. With the influx of cash from this valuable orchid crop, farmers are buying nicer homes, better farming equipment, and solar panels. […]

Deceptive New Zealand Orchids Pretend That They’re Mushrooms

Sunday, September 8th, 2019

Radio New Zealand exposes a tale of botanical deceit.¬†Corybas, also known as Spider Orchids, are strange little plants which inhabit the New Zealand forest floor. Humans can’t smell their mushroom-scented blooms, but fungus gnats can. They’re tricked into pollinating the flowers. To study how that works, orchid researcher Carlos Lehnebach converted his bathtub into an […]

How to Prepare Orchids for a Hurricane

Friday, August 30th, 2019

With Hurricane Dorian barrelling towards landfall, Motes Orchids in Florida offers helpful info about how to prepare orchids for a big storm. Their tips include: Keep orchids dry, then saturate them several hours before the storm. The water adds weight to the pots, which may keep them from blowing away. It also prepares plants in […]

60 Year Old Orchid’s One Week To Shine

Saturday, August 10th, 2019

Head to the Royal Botanic Garden Sydney this week to see a native Australian orchid in its full splendor. Dendrobium teretifolium is sometimes called the Rat’s Tail Orchid because of its long, skinny leaves. However, when it bursts into bloom, it earns another nickname, the Bridal Veil Orchid, with cascades of creamy white flowers. The […]

10 Rarest Orchids in the World

Friday, July 26th, 2019

Meet the 10 rarest orchids in the world. Many are Lady Slippers, but there are also others, like the strange Australian Western Underground Orchid. Habitat destruction and over-harvesting of wild plants have been big problems, and now climate change is a growing threat. Since there are almost 30,000 orchid species, and many are highly endangered, […]

Chasing Ghost Orchids

Sunday, July 21st, 2019

National Geographic reports on important discoveries about Florida’s famous Ghost Orchids. Scientists and photographers have found that they aren’t just pollinated by one species of moth, but by several different species. That’s good for the strange and fascinating leafless orchids, which are very endangered. After spending thousands of hours taking photos at the Corkscrew Swamp […]

Gardening Could Be the Hobby That Helps You Live to 100

Thursday, June 27th, 2019

Want to live longer? Try gardening! Many of the world’s oldest living people are gardeners. In Earth’s “blue zones” where people live the longest, many of them garden into their 80’s and 90’s. Of course, fresh air and exercise are very beneficial, and homegrown fruits and vegetables can improve diets, too. Scientific studies have shown […]

Battling to Save Orchids in Assam, India

Thursday, May 23rd, 2019

The state of Assam in northeastern India is full of hundreds of orchid species. In fact, Assam’s official flower is the Foxtail Orchid, a Rhynchostylis known in Assamese as kopou phool. Sadly, native orchids have been disappearing, destroyed by deforestation, erosion, overgrazing, and the illegal plant trade. Some native orchid species cannot be found in […]

How to Identify Native British Orchids

Saturday, May 18th, 2019

British orchid lovers will enjoy this guide from BBC Wildlife Magazine to help identify native orchids. It shows 10 different species, ranging from Common Spotted Orchids to Lizard Orchids to Bee Orchids. There are details about where each is found, and their key distinguishing features.

Why ‘Plant Blindness’ Matters

Wednesday, May 8th, 2019

“Plant blindness” is a tendency not to notice plants. People are generally much better at noticing animals. With increased urbanization, and more time spent looking at screens, the problem has worsened. Most don’t appreciate how important plants are, and that weakens support for plant conservation. As orchids and other plants face extinction, protecting them is […]