Cymbidium

Stunning orchid with surprising endurance

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.

Cymbidium - Funnyhowflowersdothat.co.uk

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.

Symbolism

In China the Cymbidium makes a special gift for friends, as the flower symbolises a valued and respectful friendship.

Origin

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.