The winter has been long and hard and it’s time to think Spring!
In keeping with my theme of “around the world without leaving NY” Let’s go to a tropical rain forest.
So how to do we this? Just take Metro North up to the Bronx’s Botanical Gardens Station – cross the street and enter the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory to experience the 13th Annual Orchid Show.
This year’s theme is Orchid-Chandeliers. Just look up and you feel as though you have entered a tropical rainforest. The array of colors, shapes and sizes and textures are incredible.
The variety of orchids is phenomenal and the colors are intense and a bit mesmerizing. As you wander through you’ll see orchids from around the world. Did you know some orchids actually grow in Antarctica?
It is quite an awakening for those who only know orchids as white and purple “prom” corsages. Some orchids are smaller than a finger nail. Others are larger than your hand.
Want to know more about Orchids?
Orchidaceae is a diverse and widespread family of flowering plants with blooms that are often colorful and fragrant, commonly known as the orchid family. Along with the Asteraceae, they are one of the two largest families of flowering plants, with between 21,950 and 26,049 currently accepted species, found in 880 genera.
The determination of which family is larger is still under debate, because verified data on the members of such enormous families are continually in flux. The largest genera are Bulbophyllum (2,000 species), Epidendrum (1,500 species), Dendrobium (1,400 species) and Pleurothallis (1,000 species).
The family also includes Vanilla (the genus of the vanilla plant), Orchis, and many commonly cultivated plants such as Phalaenopsis and Cattleya. Moreover, since the introduction of tropical species into cultivation in the 19th century, horticulturists have produced more than 100,000 hybrids and cultivars.
In addition they come from all over the world. The following list gives a rough overview of their distribution:
- Oceania: 50 – 70 genera
- North America: 20 – 26 genera
- Tropical America: 212 – 250 genera
- Tropical Asia: 260 – 300 genera
- Tropical Africa: 230 – 270 genera
- Europe and temperate Asia: 40 – 60 genera
So here’s to a fabulous trip – think warm thoughts and before you know it Spring will be here….then Summer and we will be complaining about the heat and humidity!
Ever been to the Orchid Show? Would love to hear about your favorite flowers in the COMMENTS!
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