Orchids are one of the most beautiful flowering houseplants you can buy and yet they are just not good enough – according to some people. Commercial growers have found a way to add even more color to them so that you can enjoy blue, orange and even green orchids.
How is it done, and how long does the color last?
Blue Orchids are Not Real
Vanda orchids are almost blue, but they are really a blueish-purple. A true blue color does not exist in orchids. The blue orchid pictured above has been dyed.
I think this dye job looks quite fake. The colors just don’t look real and the distribution of color is not even. Personally, they are uglier than the plain white phal.
Blue Dendrobium Orchids
Phalaenopsis are the most commonly dyed orchid but Dendrobium are also popular, especially as wedding bouquets. For these, growers use a flower that is partially white with purple on the petal tips and on the lip, which gives the orchid quite a nice two-tone look.
Are Dyed Orchids Illegal?
You might have noticed fewer dyed orchids on the market. Apparently there are some law suits in Holland between a couple of large suppliers that might be affecting supply. The disagreement is about the patent on an orchid dyeing technique.
How Are Blue Orchids Made?
As the flower stem is growing, a food dye is injected into the flower stem. As water rises in the stem, it takes the dye with it and into the flowers. Within 24 hours you can see the dye in the flowers.
This is usually done on white orchids that have very little pigment in the flower so that the blue shows well.
Any color of dye can be used. In the picture to the right you can see orange and green orchids which have also been dyed.
How Long Do Blue Orchids Last?
The blue flowers on the orchid will last until the flowers fall off. Any new flowers that develop after the dye job will revert back to the original color – probably white.
Caring for Blue Orchids
There is no real difference between these orchids and regular orchids, so give them the exact same care. Water them just like regular orchids.
The Bottom Line
Does the world really need dyed orchids? Orchids come in thousands of color combinations already – I just don’t see the appeal for these.