06 Mar2010


by Marketman


Cymbidiums are usually a rather ebullient, flamboyant and “luxurious” cut flower choice for home use as they are rather pricey. You’re more likely to see them as part of wedding bouquets, lobby or restaurant arrangements rather than casually displayed in one’s living room. Over the past five years, I have only purchased cymbidiums once, and even then they were for a fund raising/benefit dinner held at a friend’s residence, post here. At the finest end of the spectrum, they have strong, large and intensely colored blooms; particularly those imported from specialist growers in Hawaii, Thailand and elsewhere. However, we also seem to have smaller, localized versions with somewhat less intense colors at the other end of the spectrum…


When I spotted some 8-9 stems of these locally grown cymbidiums at the FTI market on Saturday, and managed to bargain them down to PHP15 ($0.30 cents) per bloom, with a few blooms thrown in for free, I decided to get five stems for a dinner party and other entertaining we were doing at home. AFter I took these photos, we moved the vase of cymbidiums to a well-lit table in the living room and hopefully we will enjoy them for several more days to come…



  1. Connie C says:

    MM, how ’bout buying the live orchids instead and keep them indoors for the several weeks that they are in bloom? They may last up to 6-8 weeks. I do not know orchids by name but I have about 25 of them in different varieties and colors in a pyramid bamboo frame outdoors where I keep them. I would bring some indoors in nice little vases or pots rotating them from outdoors to indoors home from time to time depending on choice of blooms or color. I would sometimes group them in a basket or appropriate container or vase for a more luxurious effect. Beats the cost of fresh flower arrangement and I never get tired of them.

    Mar 6, 2010 | 8:57 pm


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  3. Normita says:

    Cymbidiums are the easiest orchid to grow! They grow in California and bloom during winter/early spring. Just use regular fertilizer during summer (plant should not be directly under the sun) and you will be rewarded with flower spikes once the night temperature gets cooler. There are different varieties with flower size ranging from large to mini, the smaller the flower the more expensive. Cut flowers usually keep for a long time (just change the water often). Have seen different colors from dark red to orange but the pure white mini ones are still the prettiest. Here in Los Angeles, the cut flowers last for more than a month in a vase during cold months. Enjoy your cymbidiums MM!

    Mar 6, 2010 | 9:34 pm

  4. betty q. says:

    Hey Ms. Connie! I am asssuming your 25 orchids are in Pinas, no? Because if you have them where you are now, I am going to start buying the baby ones and start growing them. My son’s friend’s mom gifted me last October with a pot of Moth orchid as her token of gratitude for the case of strawberry jam I gave her. It had 1 spike of blooms when she gave it to me and another spike started to grow from the same spike with the blooms ina few weeks. Those new set of blooms are still STURDY!!!!! It is already March and they are still going strong.

    Once the blooms are gone, do you cut the spike? A friend told me to leave them alone. I was thinking of cutting the spike and drying them and using them in my flower arrangement….good idea? But then again, I am afraid that my friend is right and if I cut the spike….baka magtampo iyong orchid and not give me blooms anymore!

    Mar 6, 2010 | 11:19 pm

  5. Connie C says:

    Yes, the orchids are in Pinas or they will not stand the outdoor temp here in the East in wintertime. I usually cut the spike down to 1/3 its length when the blooms are spent out which is supposed to encourage blooming. If you are lucky as it looks like you have been with your orchid, another will branch out from the same spike on occasion and will reward you with more long lasting blooms. The orchid must recognize you are such a sweet and generous soul.

    Have hubby call me in DC, okay?

    Mar 7, 2010 | 1:05 am

  6. Connie C says:

    Oh, bettyQ, you can try keeping your orchid indoors year round. I have done them before here in Maryland and they have bloomed for me if you fertilize regularly,not overwater and keep them where you have diffuse light and temp in the low 70’s. I even got an expensive cattleya ( blooms have a distinctive scent but very short lived) to bloom but did not do so well as the other more hardy varieties and eventually died.

    Mar 7, 2010 | 1:16 am

  7. Vicky Go says:

    This is off topic but I’d like to bring it to your readership’s attention.

    Ivan Henares of the Ivan about town blog post wrote a very nice post on his blog featuring Zubochon. It’s on his Facebook page as well as here:

    Forgot to ask MM – what do you do with all the “lamang loob” generated from your lechons, including the pigs’ blood? Do you parcel them out to the staff? Sell it? Make other dishes like “batchoy” for sale? This would be a very good example of “snout-to-tail” consumption; a “locavore” trend!

    Mar 7, 2010 | 2:09 am

  8. jean says:

    Just to clarify, is it 15 PP per individual bloom, or per stem? If per stem, then what an amazing steal! I wish we could get them at that price here. Your arrangement is simple and lets the elegance of the flower dominate. Just beautiful!

    Mar 7, 2010 | 6:13 am

  9. Mom-Friday says:

    I always enjoy your posts on flowers :) the best for me is the green cymbidium. Are these more expensive than the Phaleonopsis?

    Mar 7, 2010 | 5:06 pm

  10. cherryoyvr says:

    Nice armoire in the background MM! What is it and where did you get this treasure? You certainly have an eye for the beautiful.

    Mar 8, 2010 | 12:02 am

  11. Faithful reader, United States says:

    We have brought cymbidium bulbs and plants to the philippines and they grow fine. But have not bloomed yet. I know they need the cold weather to bloom. Maybe it’s just not cold enough in the Philippines. We have brought many orchid plants there and this is the only one that will not bloom.

    @ Betty Q. Don’t worry about cutting the spike. They should grow right back. I suggest that you place your orchid plant in the bathroom where they get plenty of sun. The mist in the bathroom will help them bloom and grow for you the next time. Also remember when you do water them, don’t get any water in the crown (middle of the plant) I mean don’t let water sit in the crown, it will kill the plant.

    Mar 9, 2010 | 12:25 am

  12. betty q. says:

    Thanks for all the tips, Ms. Connie and Faithful Reader! I shall do those and get myself another one…maybe a fragrant orchid this time!

    MM…I dont’ know if I have mentioned it before but if you are going to Nasugbu one of these days and would like to make a small detour in Tanuan, I can hook you up with my cousin. Her husband is an orchid afficionado. He used to work at IRRI in Laguna and has the greenest thumb I know! His backyard is transformed into an orchid haven and has every imaginable orchid I think. This is according to my sister who always goes back home. I haven’t seen his orchid collection for several decades!

    Mar 10, 2010 | 4:01 am

  13. Jacob Locke says:

    My favorite has to be the Cymbidium. I am taken by the miniatures. I have a number of these in my greenhouse flourishing in hanging baskets. They never fail to impress!! I have just written an article on watering your cymbidium orchids on my site … come take a look! http://www.orchidgardeners.com

    Great post by the way … thanks! Makes me appreciate how many people share my passion!

    Aug 12, 2010 | 10:55 am

  14. Samuel T. Tayaban says:

    I am here in the Philippines. I am fond of cymbidiums and have grown them for years. They have propagated but every time to start to flower, the buds become brown, wither and die. what do you think is causing this?

    Feb 23, 2012 | 12:18 pm


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