Orchids are fascinating flowers. Shapes and colors in “packages” of different sizes, which resemble animals, birds and insects. Some are small, a few millimeters, as the Falacte Trizeuxis. or much larger, up to 70 cm, as the Phragmipedium Caudatum.
A while ago, the Magazine “Natur” dedicated an article to the Holcoglossum Amesianum, an orchid that performs a dance that defies gravity, turning almost 360 degrees to pollinate itself. This is an exception, since, generally, pollination is done by bees, flies, butterflies, and some birds. The seduction of pollinators is made by offering nectar in some cases and in others, perfumes and pheromones. Some species form a powder similar to bee pollen which is used as food.
In Japan, the samurais have been growing orchids for many years. An old legend says that an emperor barren woman inhaled the scent of an orchid, Cybidum Ensifolium, and later had 13 children. The boys are called Lan, and were ones the first to cultivate. Confucius who was described as the queen orchid who embodied the beautiful fragrance and the literature related to the idea of perfection and elegance.
The West used to flavor their flowers with scents such as vanilla. In the East, traditional Chinese medicine uses them in different formats. A product called “Shishu” is prepared with various species of Dedrobium, and is recommended for indigestion. They also use derivatives of Loddigesii Dedrobium for his alleged role in anti-cancer stomach, and lung cells.
In contrast, C. J. Bulpitt, Director of the Orchid Society of Great Britain, said that, despite the large number of alcanoides that exist in orchid tissue, they have not been able to show its medicinal use. Medicinal or not, beauty and sensuality is unquestionable in the essence of the orchid.