Cymbidium orchid is a slender stem with a glorious abundance of flowers. The sweet-smelling flower is native to the Himalayas and stays beautiful for up to five weeks.
Colours and shapes
You can recognise Cymbidium orchid by its long stem and flower column. It grows with red, purple, pink, orange, yellow, green and bi-coloured flowers. Each bloom has a hollow, bow-shaped lip that looks like a boat, giving rise to its musical name: ‘Kymbos’ is the Ancient Greek word for boat.
In China the Cymbidium makes a special gift for friends, as the flower symbolises a valued and respectful friendship.
You may be forgiven for thinking that orchids are tropical flowers — this is not the case for Cymbidium. It is used to surviving on the south-facing slopes of the Himalayas, where it grows as a wildflower. Even in this rocky, nutrient-poor soil, this high-altitude flower happily blooms away, displaying its elegant petals through cold nights and despite the bright light of the sun overhead.