Cymbidiums, The Beautiful Boat Orchids

Cymbidiums, The Beautiful Boat Orchids


Whether for long-lasting orchid arrangements or as an accent for bespoke flower arrangements, cymbidium orchids are a common request for many of our clients. And why not? Cymbidium orchids got that classy and charming look, not to mention a fuss-free nature as an indoor orchid plant.

Cymbidium Orchids Fast Facts

For starters, the name cymbidium was derived from the Greek word cymba, a small fishing boat typically made from the hollowed trunk of a tree, which somehow bears a resemblance to the lip of the flower.

  • Botanical Name: Cymbidium (pronounced as /sɪmˈbɪdiəm/)
  • Popularly known as: Boat orchids
  • Subfamily: Epidendroideae
  • Tribe: Cymbidieae
  • Subtribe: Cyrtopodiinae
  • Blooming Season: Mid-autumn to spring time
  • Flower Color: Yellow, pink, orange, red, light green, cream, brown

Cymbidium orchids are very versatile, as they can be grown as terrestrial orchids, epiphytic orchids on top of trees, or even lithophytic on rocks.

Types Of Cymbidium Orchids

Without a doubt, all cymbidium orchids, or any orchid for that matter, are hands down gorgeous. But for the sake of getting to know these beauts better, did you know that there are three basic types of cymbidiums orchids?

  • Standard cymbidium orchids – This type of cymbidium orchid refer to the large-flowered varieties, usually from Himalayas and China.
  • Miniature and compact cymbidium orchids – As the name suggests, these type of cymbidiums are smaller, typically growing to a maximum height of one to three feet tall max.
  • Cascading cymbidium orchids – Like a floral waterfall, cascading cymbidium orchids are scene-stealers with spikes that can grow up to 30 inches.

Cymbidium Orchids Species 

Half Moon CymbidiumsHalf Moon Cymbidiums

We know how much the iconic Chinese philosopher and poet, Confucius, were enamored by the beauty of orchids and dedicated many of his works to the exquisite flowers.

As a matter of fact, experts say cymbidium orchids are probably the oldest cultivated orchid, going as far back as 2500 years ago in ancient China during the time of Confucius, who dubbed the Asian Cymbidium Orchid as the King of Fragrance.

According to the American Orchid Society, the World Monocot Checklist currently recognizes 64 species of cymbidium orchids.

Here are some examples of popular cymbidium orchid species:

  • Cymbidium erytrhostylum
  • canalliculatum 'Krull-Smith'
  • ensifolium 'Iron Bone'
  • eburneum 'Vistamont
  • Cymbidium aestivum
  • Cymbidium aliciae
  • Cymbidium aloifolium
  • Cymbidium atropurpureum
  • Cymbidium borneense
  • Cymbidium canaliculatum
  • Cymbidium defoliatum
  • Cymbidium lancifolium
  • Cymbidium devonianum

From these unique orchid species, thousands of natural and man-made hybrids of cymbidium orchids are produced each year. However, most of these new orchid hybrids are frequently sold unnamed or unregistered by orchid nurseries.

Cymbidium Orchids In Los Angeles

Wild types of cymbidium orchids are distributed in northern Australia and in tropical and subtropical Asian countries, such as India, China, Japan, Malaysia, the Philippines, and the Himalayas.

Golden Orchids CymbidiumsGolden Cymbidium

To see cymbidium orchids in Los Angeles, all you have to do is visit the orchidariums and botanical gardens around town, which offers breathtaking views of its vast orchid collection to the public. The Arboretum of Los Angeles County, Descanso Gardens, and South Botanic Garden are some excellent orchid gardens you can start with.

But if you wish to have your own cymbidium orchid blooming for your personal viewing pleasure, we highly recommend you check out Orchid Republic’s stunning orchid arrangement collection. Located conveniently in the heart of Studio City, Orchid Republic offers flower delivery anywhere in Los Angeles and Orange County.

How To Take Care Of Cymbidium Orchids

If you receive one of our chic cymbidium orchid plants as a gift (or order one for yourself), make sure you give it the tender love and care it deserves, so it can live long and bloom beautifully in your home.

Follow these simple orchid care and maintenance tips:

  • Choose a cozy spot in your home that receives an ample amount of sunlight in the morning, preferably a window that has a sheer curtain that you can shield it with once the heat gets too intense by noon.
  • Once you’ve picked the perfect spot, try not to move it to a different location, so the cymbidium orchid plant can adjust to the new environment.
  • Wait for a few days before watering your new orchid plant. Use the potting material as a barometer if your orchid needs watering already.

To learn how to maintain your orchids, check out our Orchid Care Page.



Cymbidium Orchid, Royal Horticultural Society
Cymbidium, American Orchid Society

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