What Is An Orchid?


3 Answers

Lakshmipriya Nair Profile
An orchid is a type of flower. It is a name which has been derived from the Greek language. It is a modification of the word orchis which means testes when translated into English. The reason for this name is due to its root bulbs that look like testes. It is a genus that has the most diverse types of flowers. It is famous for its unusual shapes and fabulous colours.

All the flowers falling under the category of orchids are protected by CITES for the commercial purposes. It is a monocotyledon in contrast to most of the flowering plants which have dicotyledons. They occur in all habitats with the exception of Antarctica and the deserts. They are perennial in nature and are terrestrial flowers without any permanent woody structure. Orchids belong to the family Orchidaceae.
Patricia Devereux Profile
The orchid family is the most diversified group of flowering plants, with more than 25,000 species mostly concentrated in the tropics and subtropics. There are about 500 species in the Amazon Basin alone.

Jungle orchids have taken to the trees in order to compete for light. Species that live in small deposits of soil and water on trees are called "epiphytes." Other jungle epiphytes are bromeliads, some cacti species, ferns, mosses, and lichen. Epiphytes also obtain nutrients from the air. Epiphytism is not parasitic, rather it's a symbiotic relationship.

The aerial habitat is hotter and dryer than conditions of the jungle floor, so orchids have evolved special roots to absorb water and nutrients.

Germination of wild orchid seeds involves a dependent association with fungi, as the orchid seed is so small it has no food reserve so must get it from the host plant. The tiny seeds are wind-distributed.

Orchids' gorgeous colors, showy petals, and complex "throat" patterns that we humans prize so much are actually designed for just one thing: reproduction to attract insects for pollination.

The mechanism the plant uses to ensure that pollen is transferred involves visual mimicry of insects to attract them. Some orchids actually mimic the scent of female bees to attract males.
Donald  Patrick Profile
Donald Patrick answered

Orchid is a flowering plant that exhibits a unique reproductive strategy.

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