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Vanilla orchid

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Vanilla orchid
Vanilla orchid 2.jpg
Scientific Classification
  • V. abundiflora (Borneo)
  • V. acuminata (Gabon)
  • V. bakeri (Cuba)
  • V. bampsiana (C. Zaire)
  • V. cristatocallosa (Guyana to N. Brazil)
  • V. cucullata (Cameroon)
  • V. decaryana (SW. Madagascar)
  • V. denticulata (Brazil)
  • V. porteresiana (French Guiana)
  • V. purusara (Brazil)
  • V. ramosa (Ghana to Tanzania)
  • V. ribeiroi (Brazil - Mato Grosso)
  • V. weberbaueriana (Peru)
  • V. wightii (SW. India)
Vanilla orchid flower 2.jpg

The vanilla orchid is a tropical vine that can reach a length of over one hundred feet. It is one of the oldest and largest group of flowering plants. Only vanilla orchid produces an agriculturally valuable crop.


vanilla orchid flower

The vanilla orchid is a vigorous vining orchid that can reach up to 300 feet in its native tropical American environment. Most lvines are 35m long, and leaves spread along its length. Up to 100 flowers can be found along a single raceme, but most of them have no more than 20. The flowers are large, and either white, green, yellow, or cream color.

Flowers open up in the morning and close in the afternoon, and lasts only one day. The lips are tubular-shaped and long. The anther can be found at the top of the column, separated by the rostellum. When the flowers are fully grown, blooming occurs. The fruits are 5 to 9 inches long and referred to as vanilla bean. They eventually turn black in color and give off a strong aroma. Of the orchids, only vanilla are used for industrial purposes. [1]


Reproduction of vanilla orchid is the flower begins to change color, then pollination stimulates make hormones that induce the immature ovules to ripen. Pollen tubes germinate from the pollen grains and grow toward. This growth get slowly, because of between pollination and fertilization of the ovules takes lots of time. After fertilization, the seed get bigger and bigger. Most seeds are small, which they are only about a millimeter. A seed that lands on a proper growing surface may germinate and develop into a tiny structure that underground stem. The seedling remains in this condition about 2 years. The vanilla orchid continues to grow from seed to flowering plant take about 7 to 10 years, or 20 months for little. [2]


vanilla orchid flower

Most of vanilla can be found in the tropical regions of Mexico and Madagascar where that the climate is worm and humid, the soil is rich with organic matter and the vanilla plant is shaded from intense sun by other plants. Often, vanilla orchid is grown on the trunks of shade trees for support of the vines. [3]

History and Human Use

The origin of the vanilla orchid cultivation can be traced back to the Totonaco people in Mexico. The legend of vanilla orchid is that the blood of two fallen lovers marked the spot where the vine grew and the vanilla small is aroma of true love and beauty. In the 16th century the Spanish and Portuguese sailors and brought vanilla into Africa and Asia. And in the early 1700’s the vanilla orchid plant was came to English people and many of English gardens grew in popularity. Also, during the 1800’s the vanilla orchid was smuggled out of Mexico and Central America, so vanilla orchids became popular and in the 1900’s rare of vanilla orchid, they brought high offer at auction. [4]

Now vanilla is a popular flavor. Many foods contain vanilla flavor. Like ice-cream, syrup, and many kind of common food. Also, vanilla is many people’s favorite. And vanilla orchid’s small is good, so that small added on candle, perfume, lotion, and shampoo. [5]


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  • Phals 14220 Lorraine Rd Biloxi, MS 39523
  • Vanilla orchid Wikipedia
  • the epicentre Illustrations by Barbara McGee, exclusively for the Epicentre. © 2003. All rights reserved.

See Also