Blue dendrobium orchid plant

DENDROBIUM ORCHIDS

Popular Dendrobium Orchids….

New Guinea Dendrobiums. The climate varies with altitude and in mountainous areas there are cool, wet misty nights and mornings followed by warmer bright days. The exquisite cool and intermediate miniatures like D. cuthbertsonii shown above; (which requires cooler conditions with temperatures dropping as low as 45 deg F at night.) Perhaps not such an easy orchid for beginners. Never allow them to dry out completely and feed often with dilute fertilizer. The river valleys between the mountain ranges are warmer and wetter, and home to some of the most exotic of the New Guinea orchids, e.g. D. lasianthera from the Sepik River basin, and many Latouria types with long-lasting flowers. All these need generous feeding and watering. The southern plains resemble Queensland but are wetter and very warm all year through. There is seasonal rainfall variation with a wetter summer and drier winter.
Two of the outstanding species from this area (which are also found in Australia) are D. bigibbum (better know perhaps for its many hybrids which collectively are dendrobium. phalaenopsis) and D. canaliculatum, the former often found growing on rocks, the latter on the trunks of paperbark trees. The easiest New Guinea plants for beginners are Dendrobium oberrans (cool conditions); D. lawesii or D. antennatum (intermediate); and D. atroviolaceorn or D. bigibbum (D. phalaenopsis) (warm)..
Cool culture. Night time temperatures as low as 45/50 degrees F will be tolerated by the cooler growing species, cuthbertsonii for instance; when it is cold avoid over watering, but do not let the dry out totally.
Warm Culture. Treat the warmer ones as you would phalaenopsis see our page on phalaenopsis culture
Phalaenopsis dendrobiums (Singapore Orchids) and Antelope dendrobiums Phalaneopsis dendrobium flowers have can be found in a multitude of colours and stripes, anterlope dendrobiums have twisted petals giving them the appearance of having little antelope horns.
Temperature and Humidity temperature range is 50 to 90 F, this is ideal, but the odd cooler night by a degree or two will not cause any damage with a humidity of 50 to 60 percent during the daytime.
As with all orchids avoid wetting the leaves when the temperature falls, i.e. over night, If in a greenhouse good air movement is essential. Light 30- to 70-percent shade during midday.
Bright light will generally encourage flowering, but take care not to get the leaves burned.
Watering water very well, pour the water through and leave to drain allow the plant to dry before watering again. In summer twice a week at most In winter perhaps once every 10 days, unless in a warm environment. Nutrition Feed with every other watering at half the recommended dilution rate. This will guarantee adequate nutrition while avoiding any chance of root-tip.
Australian Dendrobiums .
Dendrobium Kingianum or near relatives are the some of the easiest to grow. The pseudobulbs or canes can be any length from 5cm. to 30cm. tall and are thin, and often spindly and tough. The leaves are narrowly oval with 2 to 4 at the top of each cane. The flowers appear in late winter and early spring in loose sprays at the tops of the canes on both the old and new canes. New plantlets or keikis may sometimes appear instead. These can be removed and potted separately after they have developed good roots or left on the parent plant where they will eventually flower also. There are two to ten flowers on a spray, each measuring 1- 3 cm. across, in shades of pink or purple. Other plants in this group may be taller and have red, yellow, cream or white flowers.
Culture. For their culture give intermediate temperatures and drier conditions than other Dendrobiums. Spray once a week and water generously in the spring and autumn with dilute feed. A few cold weeks in winter (down to 45°F), will encourage flowering.
Nobile Dendrobiums. Are some of the easiest to grow but can be a little difficult to bloom regularly. Their flowers are showy with colours ranging from white through pink to purple, and the lip is often beautifully marked in contrasting colours. They make magnificent specimen plants. Others are yellow and brown, while the recently introduced Yamamoto hybrids have all the colours of the rainbow. The Himalayan climate is not unlike a warmer Switzerland, with bright, cold but dry winters. Culture. November-February: daytime temperatures can drop to 40 to 45 degrees F when you should not water or feed but give plenty of light and air movement. March-May or June: warmer and moister conditions. Buds develop and new growths appear. Water sparingly until the new shoots have grown good roots. From June-November corresponds to the monsoon period, warm and very wet. Give a low strength, high nitrogen feed in April and May, then feed weekly during maximum growth. Change to high potash for the last month. Note If you do not dry and cool the plants during winter, you won’t get flowers! Himalayan Dendrobiums from lower altitudes need a less harsh winter but still dry.
Nobile Dendrobiums. Are some of the easiest to grow but can be a little difficult to bloom regularly. Their flowers are showy with colours ranging from white through pink to purple, and the lip is often beautifully marked in contrasting colours. They make magnificent specimen plants. Others are yellow and brown, while the recently introduced Yamamoto hybrids have all the colours of the rainbow.
The Himalayan climate is not unlike a warmer Switzerland, with bright, cold but dry winters.
Culture. November-February: daytime temperatures can drop to 40° – 45° when you should not water or feed but give plenty of light and air movement. March-May or June: warmer and moister conditions. Buds develop and new growths appear. Water sparingly until the new shoots have grown good roots. From June-November corresponds to the monsoon period, warm and very wet. Give a low strength, high nitrogen feed in April and May, then feed weekly during maximum growth. Change to high potash for the last month.
Note If you do not dry and cool the plants during winter, you won’t get flowers!
Himalayan Dendrobiums from lower altitudes need a less harsh winter but still dry.

Potting (all dendrobium types). Dendrobiums like to be in small pots with their roots confined. Bark, perlag and charcoal make up an open mix which drains easily. Repot when either the compost becomes acid and soggy or when the pot is full of roots. This often means every year.
Plants from the mountains of New Guinea like a little moss mixed with the bark or they can be grown on slabs of bark or tree fern on a mossy bed. Such slabs need daily misting for most of the year.
There are innumerable Dendrobium hybrids and these are almost always derived from species within one group, either Himalayan, Australian or from New Guinea. Surprisingly, most of the ‘Singapore’ orchids, although developed there, are derived from species of New Guinea and the adjacent islands and need much the same culture as the River Valley New Guinea species. So, when you buy a Dendrobium, ask which group it belongs to and where it comes from – and we don’t mean which nursery!

Categories orchid, culture, dendrobium orchids, orchid society, north of england.

Dendrobium Orchid Care

Botanical Name: Dendrobium species and hybrids

Match Dendrobium orchid care with its native habitat, and you’ll set the path to dependable blooms.

These spectacular orchids are among the most varied of any orchid genus — in size, shape, and growing habit. And it’s no wonder. More than 1,000 species exist, and their native habitats cover several continents, ranging from misty mountain forests to tropical highlands.

Dendrobium is Latin meaning “living on trees” which accurately describes this genus. Nearly all are epiphytes in the wild, growing on trees where they anchor themselves with thick roots, although a few are lithophytic, perched on moss-covered rocks and cliffs.

What most of them have in common is a contrasting throat color. And Dendrobium flowers are deliciously fragrant.

Some species have fat, stem-like pseudobulbs, although most have slender stems, called canes, that emerge from a rhizome. Don’t cut off old canes that have dropped their leaves because they sometimes flower again.

Shed some light. Put your orchids where they’ll get plenty of light, but out of direct sun. If you don’t have a spot near a window, grow lights work beautifully. Use 1 warm white tube and 1 cool white tube under a reflector. Place orchids about 8 inches (20 cm) beneath the light for 14-16 hours a day. It’s also important to give them darkness at night. Orchids need a rest, too.

Give them air. Orchids like free-flowing air as in their native habitats. Put them in a spot where they’ll enjoy plenty of air circulation. Fans are fine, but keep them away from heat or AC vents.

To repot…or not. Fir bark medium breaks down after a couple years and needs replaced. The best time to repot your orchid is when new growth begins, shortly after it is done blooming.

Got a reluctant bloomer? Give your orchid slightly cooler nighttime temperatures to spark blooming. A 15° difference will do. Dendrobiums will tolerate varying temperatures from 60° nights up to 90° days. They usually flower in spring, with some giving a second show of blooms in late summer. With good Dendrobium orchid care, you can expect blooms year after year.

You’ll find Dendrobium orchids for sale in the spring, when most are in bloom. However, their blooming time varies by species. D. chrysotoxum, shown above right, blooms from March to June.

Dendrobium Orchid Care Tips

Origin: India, Asia, Australia, New Zealand, Pacific Islands

Height: Species vary widely — many range from 6-30 in (15-75 cm). Taller orchids may need staking.

Light: Bright indirect light year-round. Some direct morning sun is fine.

Water: Water thoroughly and allow the top inch of soil to dry out between waterings. Dendrobiums store water in their rhizomes, and some species have water-storing pseudobulbs, making them more tolerant of dry soil than wet.

Humidity: Moderate to high, preferably 50-70% relative humidity. A big part of Dendrobium orchid care is keeping up the moisture in the air around it, especially in winter. Use a humidity tray or room humidifier. Grouping plants also helps to maintain the humidity around them.

Temperature: 60-65°F/16-18°C nights and 75-80°F/24-27°C days. Cooler nighttime temps will help trigger blooming.

Soil: Orchid potting mix

Fertilizer: Feed every 2 weeks with an orchid fertilizer while plant is growing and flowering.

Propagation: Division

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light requirement

Dendrobium orchids can tolerate much higher sunlight compared to other species of orchids. They can be exposed to morning sunlight followed up by 50% to 70% afternoon sunlight. Direct sunlight is to be avoided to prevent sunburn. If your dendrobium orchid is not flowering then it means its not getting enough sunlight. Please increase the sunlight to induce flowering. Dendrobiums can be grown in both hot and cold climate. It is very ideal for Indian climate. Following images shown the effect of direct sun on leaves of orchids plant. When it comes to Dendrobium orchids care, our climate is best suited for them so we don’t have to give much care for them.

The images shown are example of sunburn. Please change the location of your orchids if you notice white patches on the leave. Exposure to direct sun can harm your dendrobium orchids. Just don’t let the direct sunlight fall on it.

TEMPERATURE

Dendrobium orchids will tolerate high temperature/ Cold climate and is perfect for Indian weather. They can also withstand moderate rainfalls. As we said this is one of the easiest orchids to grow in our climate.

WATERING

Watering in the morning is always recommended so that it will dry up by night and there will not be any residual water left in the pot. Now the frequency of watering depends on the potting media you have used. You can water once in 2 or 3 days if the potting media used is charcoal. If you have used coconut husk as the major component of potting media then water once in 5 or 6 days. Always its ideal to just touch the potting media and feel the dryness. If its too dry you can water it without any hesitation. People always tend to over water the orchids and that is something which has to be avoided. Most of the times dendrobium orchids will do well without water upto two weeks. They can store water and use it when the conditions are dry. Let the water run through the plant for more than one minute. Don’t let water get stagnated on the pots. Make sure there is proper drainage.

LIGHTING

Dendrobium orchids flowers very well in bright light. Please avoid direct sun as much as possible. If your dendrobium orchid is not flowering it means the light is low. Try to increase the light to induce flowering in your plants.

MaNURING

NPK manures are the best feed for orchids. You can use 30 10 10 NPK once a week followed by 13 27 27 NPK. Use both these ratio of NPK for best results. Both these manures are available at our website “HERE”. Dosage is one gram per liter of water for both these manures. Manuring after watering is good always.

This is a great trick to improve humidity for orchids. Just insert the pot on a plate (or tray) of pebbles with water filled in it. Don’t let the roots or any plant part touch the water. This will create a humid region around your plant making them to grow vigorously. Try it since we had great results. Also this will prevent snails entering the pots and attacking the plants.

Orchid, Dendrobium

Grow dendrobium orchid in a bright spot for best flowering. Like many orchids, these plants can take some direct sun on their leaves, especially in the North. If it doesn’t get enough light, it won’t bloom.
Water dendrobium orchids when the moss or bark starts to dry out. Some types can store water in their stems, making them drought tolerant. If you’re not able to water your dendrobium orchid for a long period and it loses its leaves, don’t give up hope; with good care, it may resprout once it gets regular moisture again. One easy way to water it is to soak the moss in water for about 10 minutes. Then leave the orchid be until the moss begins to dry out and soak it again.
Get more orchid watering tips.
These orchids appreciate average to high humidity, so if your home’s air is especially dry, boost the amount of moisture to keep your dendrobium at its best.
Repot your orchid when the bark or moss it’s growing in starts to break down. This is often every couple of years or so, but can vary depending on a number of factors. If the bark or moss breaks down too much, your orchid roots won’t get as much air as they like and the plant will start to suffer.
Fertilize dendrobium orchids in spring and summer with an orchid fertilizer for best blooms. Not sure how much fertilizer to use? Be sure to follow the directions on the product’s packaging.
Note: Dendrobium orchids are beautiful to look at, but are not intended for human or animal consumption.

Nobile Type Dendrobium Care

Nobile dendrobiums can be grown and flowered in the home or greenhouse. They do, however, have rather specific cultural requirements. When those requirements are met, they will produce a profusion of sweet-scented, long-lasting flowers that can appear from fall through spring.

Light

Nobile dendrobiums can and should be grown outdoors in the summer, usually between the first of June and the end of September if you are in the far northern states. Check your local climate for frost dates. If there is danger of frost, bring them in. They should be grown in 30-50% shade or bright, filtered sun. In the fall, when you bring them in, place them in either an east or south window. South is preferable. Try to give them as much light as you can, just short of burning.

Watering

There is a direct relationship between light, temperature and water. In the spring and summer months when the plants are in active growth, the sunlight is strong and there is ample air movement, water when the mix approaches dryness but still has a bit of moisture left. In the fall (usually mid to late November) when the newest growths have matured and get their last terminal leaf and there is a small nubby area in the center at the base of the leaf, water only enough to keep the canes or pseudobulbs from shriveling. This could be every couple weeks. Do not resume normal watering (watering when the plant approaches dryness, every 3-5 days) until you see flower buds appear on the sides of the canes usually opposite where the leaves are. Water in the morning. Rain water, reverse osmosis or distilled water is ideal, but well or municipal water is fine if the pH is 7.5 or lower and there are not huge amounts of minerals in the water.

Fertilizing

Fertilize with Grow More 20-10-20 or Green Jungle Orchid Food, especially formulated to work with rain, distilled, reverse osmosis water or water low in alkalinity. Fertilize with Green Jungle everytime you water. (NOTE: If using sphagnum moss, fertilize with Green Jungle every third or fourthwatering during the growing season.) Stop feeding around mid-September, otherwise you will have lots of growth but few, if any, flowers. You may also see new plantlets develop where the flower buds should be if the plant has too much nitrogen tied up in it. Resume feeding after flowering when new growths emerge at the base of the plant and you can see new roots. If new plants do appear on the sides of the canes and you want more, wait until the growths are 6-8 inches in size and the roots are at least 3 inches long. They can then be simply twisted or cut off the cane and potted up separately.

Temperature

Nobiles need cool temperatures in the fall and winter months in order to develop flower buds. Therefore, when they are brought in, they must have cool night temperatures. To expect good bloom, night temperatures should be no more than 60°F until the buds appear. Day temps can be in the low to mid 70s. After the buds appear, you can keep them at 62-64° F at night and you should have blooms in January or February. At night one can even put them in the refrigerator until buds appear. These plants can even take cooler temperatures but really reduce watering as rot problems can result from cold, damp potting mix.

Blooms

After the flowers have finished, you can trim the stems off close to the canes. After several years, some of the older growths may become woody, shriveled and yellow-looking. As long as you have three or more healthy canes and at least one with a full set of leaves, you can cut the old unsightly growths at the base. We do not recommend cutting all the leafless canes as they store energy and contribute to the front new growths’ development. Canes that flower one year can often produce a few more flowers in a subsequent year. The 2-3″ flowers are long-lasting (6-8 weeks) and are highly fragrant. With the right culture you can have literally 50 to 100 flowers per cane.

Repotting

Repot every two years or as the plant outgrows the pot. Orchiata Bark (‘Power’-medium grade) or New Zealand sphagnum moss or coconut chips also work well. The best time to repot (if needed) is after flowering in the spring when the new growths and roots appear. If there is a solid root mass, you won’t need to try and dig out the old mix; simply pot on if that is the case. If the mix is old and crumbly or sour, carefully remove the bark or moss and rinse the root system. Any old hollow or decayed roots can and should be removed. If the plant is growing in a direction, put the oldest growth towards the edge of the pot and allow at least an inch or two between the newest growth and the edge of the pot so there is room to grow.

Image: iStock

Are there really true blue orchids?

Like you, we’ve been dying to know the truth about it, too.

A lot has been written online about the existence of the rare blue orchids. Some say they don’t exist in nature, because like roses and many other flowers, orchids do not have the genetic component required to produce the blue pigment.

However, as many orchid lovers know by heart, orchid plants are simply a cut above the rest and a league of their own. With over 1,000 genera and more than 22,000 unique orchid species, the Orchidaceae family is unbelievably full of surprises.

We did our own research on this intriguing topic, and here’s what we discovered. (We’ve also included the sources and book references at the end of the article.)

What’s the Big Deal About Blue Flowers?

When it comes to flowers and foliage, blue isn’t one of nature’s favorite colors.

“Less than 10 percent of the 280,000 species of flowering plants produce blue flowers,” says David Lee, author of Nature’s Palette: The Science of Plant Color and a retired professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at Florida International University in Miami.

According to Lee, there is no true blue pigment in plants. It’s even rare to naturally occur in leaves than in flowers and only a few understory tropical plants have true blue foliage.

For example, there are no true blue roses in nature because they lack the gene to secrete delphinidin, the anthocyanidin source of blue pigmentation in flowers. The occasional blue roses you see in the market are either product of tedious genetic modification, cross-pollination, or the resourceful use of dyes or floral paint.

A List of True Blue Flowers

If you love the color blue, true blue flowers to gush about include:

  • Cornflower (Centaurea Cyanus)
  • Heavenly Blue Morning Glory (Ipomoea tricolor)
  • Perry’s Blue (Iris sibrica)
  • Blue Bird hydrangea (Hydrangea serrata)
  • Empire Blue Butterfly Bush (Buddleja davidii)
  • Blue Giant, African Lily (Agapanthus)
  • Blue Delphiniums
  • Summer Blues (Delphinium grandiflorum)
  • Rhapsody Blue (Hydrangea macrophylla)

But that’s not all.

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The Bardot

Romeo and Juliet

Mystique Peonies

Do True Blue Orchids Exist?

Yes. Blue orchids exist in nature.

As we’ve mentioned, orchids, with an armada of insanely diverse species from all over the world, are a league of their own. That’s why it no longer surprised us when we learned that orchids are one of the elite few that can bloom in true blue.

In an effort to find the answer about true blue orchids, we’ve read a lot of blogs claiming of having true blue dendrobium orchids or blue phalaenopsis orchids, but somehow, they seem to be without merit.

The only surefire true blue orchid that we have confirmed based on our research is the exquisite Vanda coeruelea, aptly known as the blue orchid or the blue vanda.

The Blue Vanda Orchid

Vanda orchids are one of the most sought-after genera. The exotic-sounding name was derived from the Sanskrit or Urdu name of a specific vanda orchid species, the Vanda tessellate, which has spread and has been used from then on to reference the entire genus.

Vandas are monopodial orchids, meaning they are single-footed, not rooted to the ground, and grow upwards. They have long strips of leaves on either side of the spike and have large, lovely flowers that come in a variety of colors, such as white, orange, pink, purple, burgundy, and blue.

This is the elusive Vanda coerulea.


Image: Kew Science, Royal Botanical Garden

The History of the Blue Orchids

This breathtaking blue orchid was first spotted by Dr. William Griffith, a botanist and naturalist, in the Khasia Hills of Assam, a state in Northeast India, nestled south of the eastern Himalayas along the Brahmaputra and Barak River valleys, in 1837. Unfortunately, Dr. Griffith’s Vanda coerulea died when he brought it with him to England.

In the middle of the century, Sir Joseph Dalton Hooker, a British botanist and explorer, have written about his unforgettable encounter of the blue orchids in the very hills of Assam.

A snippet of it was published in the book, The Enchanted Orchid by, an Australian illustrator and orchid enthusiast, Max Fulcher:

“Near the village of Larnac, oak woods are passed in which Vanda coerulea grows in profusion, waving its panicles of azure blue in the wind. We collected seven men’s loads of this superb plant for the Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew, but owing to unavoidable accidents and difficulties, few specimens reached England alive.”

A decade later, the one-of-a-kind blue orchid was first formally described by English orchidologist, John Lindley, in 1847.

Vanda coerulea, A True Blue Orchid

Vanda coerulea (Vanda coerulea Griffith ex Lindley) is a visually arresting orchid species with large, flat, signature blue flowers. Apart from blue, this evasive orchid also blooms in gorgeous pink vanda and white – apparently, the purest white found in the entire genus of vanda orchids.

Based on the website of the Royal Botanical Gardens, the flowers of these blue orchids grow up to 13 centimeters across and are prominent for their small lip (labellum), barely two centimeters in length, an uncommon characteristic for vanda orchids, which can also be seen in an almost identical species, V. coerulescens.

In its natural habitat in the wild, it grows high above on deciduous, rough-barked trees, such as oak. Vanda coerulea have flower spikes that are sometimes split and produce up to 20 to 30 flowers per plant, which is undeniably much more compared to other orchid species in the vanda genus.

Image: Kew Science, Royal Botanical Garden

Where to Find Blue Orchids

Vanda coerulea is native in India (Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, and Nagaland). However, numerous sightings have also been chronicled in neighboring Asian countries, including:

  • Southern China (Yunnan)
  • Nepal
  • Burma
  • Northern Thailand
  • Vietnam
  • Bhutan
  • Laos
  • Cambodia
  • Myanmar

Previously, this vivid blue orchid was considered to be extremely rare in the wild until recently, on CITES Appendix I.

Vanda Coerulea Species and Hybrids

The rare blue Vanda coerulea orchid has long been sought and treated as a prized possession by many orchid aficionados. Over the years, many have discovered several V. coerulea species, including:

  • Vanda coerulea delicata Rolfe 1925
  • Vanda coerulea f. delicata (Rolfe) Christenson 2009
  • Vanda coerulea f. luwangalba Kishor 2008
  • Vanda coerulea f. rogersii (Rolfe) Christenson 2009
  • Vanda coerulea var. rogersii Rolfe 1914

Vanda coeruelea, Lord Rothschild’s variety is another mesmerizing blue orchid from India and Burma. It was mentioned in the book Orchid Album: Comprising Coloured Figures and Descriptions of New, Rare and Beautiful Orchidaceous Plants, which was first published in 1884.

“This is without doubt the finest dark coloured variety of this, the Queen of the East Indian Orchids that we have of yet the good fortune to see; it was communicated to us by Mr. Hill, gardener to Lord Rothschild, Tring Park. The Sepals and petals are much broader than in the type, and of greater substance, the ground color being cobalt blue, distinctly and beautifully reticulated with deep ultramarine-blue: the lip is also of the same deep color.”

Vanda coeruelea has been used extensively to cultivate more true blue orchids and to breed a stunning array of deep blue and purple orchid hybrids of vanda and other related genera. It’s a parent plant to various remarkable orchid hybrids, including the Vanda Rothschildiana, which is a cross with Vanda (Euanthe) sanderiana.

Aside from the sought-after bright blue-colored blooms, it tends to pass on its unique branched inflorescences and attractive net-like veins or tessellations on the sepals and petals.

How to Take Care of Vanda Coerulea

Vanda coerulea comes from cool, tropical mountain forests in Asia. In the wild, these true blue orchids bloom in the autumn season. That being said, it’s best to mimic that growing condition.

Check out these practical orchid care tips:

  • LIGHT. Orchid growers agree that their blue orchid plant grows well in almost full sunlight exposure. However, to prevent burning the flowers and leaves, it’s best to put it in shade during noon time, especially in summer, when the heat is intense.
  • WATER. Mist several times a day, particularly during summer and on hot days and during the growing season, to keep your V. coerulea orchid moist. Do not let the water stay in the crown, or its roots will rot. To avoid that unfortunate scenario, do not water or mist in the evening.
  • FERTILIZER. Feed with a balanced fertilizer weekly or biweekly while the plant is growing. Do this after watering your orchids thoroughly.
  • HUMIDITY. This blue orchid plant needs between 80 to 85 percent in summer into autumn and drop to 50 to 55 percent come late winter and spring.
  • POTTING. Vanda coerulea are best grown in hanging pots or baskets with a fast-draining medium.

Other Types of Natural Blue Orchids

When you Google “blue orchids,” there were other results aside from the blue vanda. However, when we checked to see the photo, the orchids were either baby blue or purple.

Here are some worth noting from credible sources.

  • Black-Blue Spurred Dendrobium (Dendrobium cyanocentrum Schltr. 1906 SECTION Calyptrochilus)
  • Sky Blue Vanda of Thailand (Vanda coerulescens Griffith 1851 SECTION Longicalcarata)
  • Dark Blue Acacallis (Acacallis cyanea Lindley 1853)
  • Disa Graminifolia Ker Gawl. ex Spreng., syn. Herschelianthe graminifolia

Currently, we are unable to expound on these types of blue orchids as there’s very limited literature about them. But one thing is for sure: they do not compare to the vividness of the blue vanda orchids.

Blue Phalaenopsis Orchids, Are They for Real?

We’re sorry to burst your bubble. The blue phalaenopsis orchids you see in the market, although without a doubt, still beautiful, are not naturally blue.

In reality, phalaenopsis orchids bloom in a rainbow of stunning colors and hues — including reddish purple, subtle to electric pinks, lemon yellow to yellow-orange — except blue.

The popular blue phalaenopsis orchids sold these days are simply pure white flowers that were meticulously dyed. This includes the popular Blue Mystique orchid variety. Launched in the Tropical Plant Industry Exhibition back in 2011, these blue phalaenopsis orchids are a result of a patented dying process on naturally white orchids.

First-time buyers of the Blue Mystique orchids were dismayed when they found out that the new blooms of this deceiving blue orchid came out white.

Sources:
The Enchanted Orchid, Max Fulcher, 2003
Orchids: A Selection from the Famous Orchid Album Illustrated by Nugent Fitch, 1882

The Royal Botanical Garden Kew Science

Dendrobium Orchid Info: How To Grow And Care For Dendrobium Orchids

Some of the most popular orchid plants among home growers are Dendrobium orchid plants. These showy flowers are relatively easy to grow, with a central long stem and an attractive spray of flowers that can last up to four weeks. There are many Dendrobium varieties, and each one has slightly different growing conditions. Luckily, with all the types of Dendrobium orchids to choose from, there is likely to be one that fits your home environment perfectly.

About Dendrobium Orchid Plants

Dendrobium is sort of the catch-all of orchid species. When you look for Dendrobium orchid info, you can find whole books devoted to each of the different types of Dendrobium orchids that can fall into this category. In general, though, you can separate them in a few different groups.

Sheer beginners will love Nobile orchids. These hybrids go dormant for a couple of months in the winter, losing some of their leaves in the process. These plants can have up to 50 blooms on one stem, making for a stunning floral display. Growers have perfected the Nobile hybrids so closely that they can even cause them to bloom for any requested holiday. If you’re looking for an orchid with lots of helpful information available about it, this is the one to choose.

Another popular type is the Phalaenopsis orchid with its bright, densely packed flowers. Like all orchids, they are particular about their environment, but if they’re well cared for you might be rewarded with a second blooming season later in the year.

How to Grow Dendrobium Orchids

Although there is a huge variety from which to choose, when it comes to learning how to grow Dendrobium orchids, there are two important rules that they all follow:

First, they like to live in little pots with their roots crowded into a tiny area. If you try to be nice and give them room to spread out, the roots are likely to stay too moist and begin to rot. If you don’t like the look of a large plant growing in a ridiculously small pot, camouflage it in a larger planter.

The other way to care for Dendrobium orchids is to give them as much bright light as possible. This doesn’t mean sticking them in the desert sunlight, but a south-facing window in the house is the place where they will thrive. In almost all cases, when your Dendrobium orchid isn’t flowering, it’s a case of not enough sunlight.

Blue & Black Orchids: Do They Really Exist?

Author: Celeste Booth

Blooming, Classification

Orchids blossom in a variety of different beautiful colors. Vibrant reds, pinks, purples…the list goes on. There are two shades, however, that orchids do not naturally blossom in: a true blue or a true black. They simply do not have the genetic makeup to make these pigments. There are some varieties of purple orchids that look very blue, but upon close inspection are really a shade of purple. Similarly, black orchids have an extremely rich pigmentation that looks almost black but is not a true black color.

So what about the bright blue orchids you may have seen at your local Lowe’s or grocery store? Those are actually white orchids that have been artificially dyed blue. If they were to blossom again, they would have white flowers. And while they look exotic and vibrant, once you know they have just been dyed that color, they lose much of their charm.

Even though there exist no pure blue or black orchids, the following varieties are among some of the closest shades of blue or black you will find in nature:

Cyanicula gemmata

Disa graminifolia

Dendrobium dedicatulum

Cymbidium Kiwi Baron

Dracula vampira

Paphiopedilum Stealth

Image credits:

Dendrobium dedicatulum: Eerika Schulz

Cymbidium Kiwi Baron: Orquideas.com

Dracula vampira: Eric Hunt

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