Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Horny Horticulture



"Orchids aren't just pretty ... they are sexy. ... In Victorian England, women weren't allowed to have orchids because the form of them was thought to be too erotic and too sexual, and it would be too much for a woman to bear, having a flower that sexual in her possession."

- Susan Orlean, author of The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession


If that's the case, Cleveland Botanical Garden is positively swelling with sexuality this month as it hosts Orchid Mania for the seventh time.

"We have an amazing array of orchids here," says chief horticulturist Cynthia Druckenbrod. "We have over 500 varieties and over 1,000 plants."

They suspend from rafters, drape over railings and sprawl around the waterfall. They emanate sensual scents: Vanilla, chocolate, coconut, lemon and angel food cake.

Should your trip to the garden inspire you to create your own little hothouse, orchids are easy to grow.

"There's brands where you just add ice [cubes] at the top and they melt and it gets your orchid to keep blooming and blooming and blooming and setting up a new flower to spike the following year," says Druckenbrod.

And you thought botany was boring.

Cleveland Botanical Garden
’s Orchid Mania runs through March 28.

Photo by Miranda S. Miller.

6 comments:

Linda Hochartz said...

Nice article...love the quote at the beginning. Makes me think of flowers in a "whole new way"!

Zach said...

Sounds like a trip to the garden is in order.

Movie Posters Etc. said...

Great take on Orchid Mania. It reminds me of what Rosebud from Citizen Kane supposedly stood for in Hearst's life. If you remember, to Hearst, it wasn't a sled.

Tamara said...

Great article! I'll have to check out these flowers.

Neal said...

Definitely florid prose!

Paulbyl said...

Stimulating article. I'll be on the look-out (and cover the kids' eyes) for those more provocatively erotic orchids.