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Orchids

Did you know? The orchid planthas an undercover (symbiotic) alliance with a type of fungi called mycorrhizae that grow inside orchid roots helping the plant to absorb water and nutrients. The orchid pays back with nutrients that help the fungi survive.

Image of Pink OrchidWhy are we so fascinated with the orchid? Is it its uniquely-orchid posture, bending at the top as if to get closer to you? Is it its seemingly open-eyed, glaring petals, each petal a glorious display of form and color? Or is it because each orchid plant elicits in you that extraordinary feeling of witnessing nature at its most exuberant?

Just ask 10 orchid lovers why their fascination with the exotic flower, and you'll get 10 different answers. And you might be surprised to realize that this delicate flower that comes in such different looks belongs to the largest plant families in the world, with more than 30,000 species of orchid in over 800 genera. Exotic Flower these differ widely from one another, some weighing as much as a ton, with huge 30-inch petals.

Classification of the Exotic Orchid
Kingdom Plantae Plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Liliopsida Monocotyledons
Sub-class Liliidaea
Order Orchidales
Family Orchidaceae Orchid family

Habitat: Orchids are proliferated across most countries, although the natural habit of many species is in the tropics where the majority of the species grow on the trunks and branches of trees for support. In the temperate zones, such as Southern Australia, the flower orchid grows mostly on the ground.

It is easy to understand why people fall prey to the obsession with orchids. It is difficult to get close to a fresh plant in full bloom and not get smitten by its fascinating and all-too-rare unique looks. Today, more than ever, millions of people are devoted to planting and growing orchids, and the orchid remains a favorite amongst many as a precious gift to give to loved ones.

Depending on their growth habits, this exotic flower is divided into three categories:

Categories of orchids
Epiphyte These grow on trees and branches, not as parasites, but for support. They derive their nutrients from the air, rain, and through decaying vegetation that the roots can absorb. An example of this orchid type is the Sophronitis Coccinea which has a bloom that sparkles brightly like a gem.
Terrestrial These are seen under the ground, having a symbiotic relation with a special fungus, which in turn supports the orchid with essential nutrients through the roots. Examples would include The fragrant Zygopetalumcrinitum orchids As well as the Cypripedium Calceolus
Lithophyte These are seen covering the bases and forks of trees or filling crevices in rocks, and absorb a maximum supply of nutrients from decaying mosses. An example of this orchid type would be the species Cytopodium Andersoniae which grows mainly on flat rock surfaces.

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There are two growth types of orchids: The first, known as Monopodial Orchids, have a central stem of growth and no pseudo bulbs; they produce new growth from the crown of the plant, and flowers are produced from the stem between the leaves.

The second known as Symbodial Orchids possess a rhizome which sends out a shoot. This develops into a stem and leaves and eventually produces flowers. Later, a new shoot develops from the base of this growth.

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