The Orchid Collection in the Greenhouses

March 30, 2020 Nick Snakenberg , Curator of Tropical Collections and Associate Director of Horticulture

Believe it or not, this fall marks 10 years of growing plants in our new greenhouse facilities. The upgraded systems have impacted the quality and range of plants we can successfully cultivate, and this is especially noticeable in the orchid collection. Orchids are one of the largest plant families and occur naturally in a wide variety of climates all over the world. Prior to the renovations, the orchid collection was housed in one large greenhouse. While microclimates within that space allowed horticulturists to grow plants from various climates, there were strong limitations on the variety of species that could be successfully grown.

In the new facilities, the orchid collection is housed in three separate compartments, each with its own environment and climate control systems. The plants are housed mainly by temperature requirements but light and humidity can also be adjusted. This has greatly improved the Gardens’ ability to grow plants with cooler temperature requirements (the cool orchid greenhouse can drop into the upper 40s at night). Masdevallia, Dracula and Lycaste are just a few of the genera that have shown improved vigor in their new home.

A bit of advice for you home orchid growers: If your plant is not happy, do a bit of research and change its environment accordingly. Small changes can make a big difference in a plant’s health and happiness.


Orchids in the Greenhouses

Add new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

Sign up for our e-newsletters!