Orchids in February are a Photo Treat

Close-up of pale pink Moth Orchid flower.

With nothing in bloom till the Crocus and Dwarf Iris come to life in early Spring, having a membership to the Denver Botanic Gardens is a beautiful thing. And with the February Orchids Showcase, it presents an opportunity for a flower photo fix!

With so many varieties and colors, there’s definitely some flower eye candy. Some I’ve learned to identify while others remain a mystery – and that’s ok. With many of these Orchid flowers looking like little sculptures – complete with facial expressions, I’ll take the wonder. I just love Orchids!!

My History with Early Orchid Exposure

Purple and brown orchids.
Haven’t a clue what variety these Orchids are.

My first real job in high school was with a local florist. They specialized in Orchids and had a hot house filled with them. Seeing these incredible flowers up close, I quickly became enamored with them. Their incredible blooms stemming from such minimal grounding.

Surrounded by big purple and white blooms, I remember just wandering in awe through rows of these beautiful specimens.

The dead of winter in NJ can be quite dismal. So having access to these blooming flowers was quite a gift! Not to mention the impression they left on me. Trying to successfully grow a Orchid plant at home proved challenging so I was even more grateful to have access to these plants.

Allowing the Camera to Do the Talking…

As Santa brought me a new camera lens for Christmas, the Orchid Showcase was perfect for taking it for a test drive. Fiddling with settings for a bit, ultimately, I just wanted to walk around and take in the magnificence of these flowers – their many shapes and patterns. Best to allow my camera to do the talking.

Walking up and down and observing the plants in their glory, one appreciates how incredible Nature is. The following photos are just some of the many I took. Admittedly I gravitated towards Moth Orchids. With all their colors, textures and what look like fangs, they’re fascinating.

Close-up of magenta and ivory Moth Orchids.
Close-up of ivory and magenta Moth Orchids.
Cluster of white Moth Orchid flowers.
A cluster on white Moth Orchids.
Pink moth orchids with buds close-up.
Vibrant pink Moth Orchids with buds.

Aphrodite’s Slippers

Aphrodite's Slipper Orchid flower prior to opening.
Aphrodite’s Slipper Orchid with its helmet-like shape.

There were lots of different Moth Orchids. But it was the Aphrodite’s Slippers that had me shaking my head in curiosity. Having never seen this particular type of orchid before, given its unusual appearance, it has quickly become a favorite.

From different angles it’s so unique with its unusual shapes and textures. But the kicker is when the bloom has not yet opened and it looks like helmet of sorts. It makes me think of an ancient Roman Gladiator’s helmet. It’s just so bizarre looking as in the photo to the left.

It’s hard to believe this strange looking bud will open to the orchid that it is as seen in the photos below.

Aphrodite's Slipper Orchid.
Aphrodite’s Slipper Orchid close-up.
Side by side Aphrodite Slippers orchids.
Two side-by-side Aphrodite’s Slipper Orchids with their unusual shapes and textures.

All in all I’d have to say I’m mighty happy with my new camera lens. Still some things to figure out – but that’s part of the fun.

When the snow is still falling and outdoor flowers remain in short supply until Spring, thankfully the Denver Botanic Gardens abides with its February Orchids Showcase. I’m ever so grateful to have this local option to retreat indoors for a floral treat 🙂

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