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Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History
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Drawing of a botanical specimen

Encyclopedia of LifeExplore information about the orchids featured in the show. The Encylopedia of Life is a free online encyclopedia featuring information on all of the 1.8 million living species known to science. The encylopedia is compiled from existing databases and from contributions by experts and the general public from around the world.



Cymbidium

Cymbidium
Learn more about Cymbidium at the Encyclopedia of Life

Cymbidium ensifolium

Cymbidium ensifolium
Learn more about Cymbidium ensifolium at the Encyclopedia of Life

Cymbidium goeringii

Cymbidium goeringii
Learn more about Cymbidium goeringii at the Encyclopedia of Life

Cymbidium goeringii

Anoectochilus
Learn more about Anoectochilus at the Encyclopedia of Life

Anoectochilus formosanus

 
Learn more about Anoectochilus formosanus at the Encyclopedia of Life


Medicinal Orchids

Orchid remedies make use of dried flowers, leaves, roots and/or tubers, and are usually consumed in the form of tea, soups, or food additives. Here are a few medicinal orchids:

Dendrobium nobile

Dendrobium nobile

Shi-hu
Shi-hu

Dendrobium species taken to cure "deficiencies of the yin," such as kidney disease and indigestion. This is the oldest and most widely used orchid treament.

Learn more about Dendrobium nobile at the Encyclopedia of Life



Bletilla striata

Bletilla striata

Bai-ji
Bai-ji

Uses Bletilla striata ingested to stop bleeding.

Learn more about Bletilla striata at the Encyclopedia of Life



Gastrodia elata

Gastrodia elata
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Tian-ma
Tian-ma

Tubers or rhizomes of Gastrodia elata used to treat conditions such as dizziness, convulsions, and hypertension.

Learn more about Gastrodia elata at the Encyclopedia of Life



Anoectochilus setaceus

Anoectochilus setaceus

Jin-xian-lian
Jin-xin-lian

Anoectochilus species taken to treat diseases such as pneumonia and nephritis.

Learn more about Anoectochilus setaceus at the Encyclopedia of Life

Cremastra appendiculata

Cremastra appendiculata

Shan-ci-gu
Shan-ci-gu

Cremastra appendiculata, an orchid know as the Chinese tulip, used to trea tonsillitis and cancer.

Learn more about Cremastra appendiculata at the Encyclopedia of Life

Upcoming Related Events



Vote for Best in Show

Tom Mirenda of Smithsonian Gardens talks about some criteria for judging orchids

Join the competition!

Watch this video and learn how experts judge orchids at botanical shows around the world. Then cast your vote online for the best orchid in the exhibition.

You can vote on different orchids every few weeks, so check back often. Visitors to the museum exhibit can also text their votes from the exhibit using their mobile phones.



Related Exhibition

Tom Mirenda of Smithsonian Gardens talks about some criteria for judging orchids

Visit The Orchid in Chinese Painting, now exhibiting at the Smithsonian Arthur M. Sackler Gallery.



Timelapse Video

Timelapse video of the Orchids exhibit installation.

View a timelapse video of the installation of the Orchids exhibition.

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