Blue & Black Orchids: Do They Really Exist?

Author: Celeste Booth15 Comments

Blooming, Classification

Orchids blossom in a variety of different beautiful colors. Vibrant reds, pinks, purples…the list goes on. There are two shades, however, that orchids do not naturally blossom in: a true blue or a true black. They simply do not have the genetic makeup to make these pigments. There are some varieties of purple orchids that look very blue, but upon close inspection are really a shade of purple. Similarly, black orchids have an extremely rich pigmentation that looks almost black but is not a true black color.

So what about the bright blue orchids you may have seen at your local Lowe’s or grocery store? Those are actually white orchids that have been artificially dyed blue. If they were to blossom again, they would have white flowers. And while they look exotic and vibrant, once you know they have just been dyed that color, they lose much of their charm.

Even though there exist no pure blue or black orchids, the following varieties are among some of the closest shades of blue or black you will find in nature:

Cyanicula gemmata

Blue Orchid

Disa graminifolia

Blue Orchid

 

Dendrobium dedicatulum

Blue Orchid

Cymbidium Kiwi Baron

Black Orchid

Dracula vampira

Orchid

Paphiopedilum Stealth

Paphiopedilum Stealth

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image credits:

Dendrobium dedicatulum: Eerika Schulz

Cymbidium Kiwi Baron: Orquideas.com

Dracula vampira: Eric Hunt

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15 Responses to “Blue & Black Orchids: Do They Really Exist?”

  1. M v d Vyver says:

    Hello and thank you for the info, wanted to be proud when I read the name of another south African but the proud was short lived, shame the lady is so rude, was just an oversight and you did give credit and a link. Not all like that keep up the info Regards

    1. Celeste Booth says:

      Thank you for the kind words!

  2. Mike Russo says:

    hello, I’m looking for blue orchids for my girlfriend which she’s in love with she says she’s had them in the past and they grew back blue. I’m not sure what type they were but would love the closest to that color and willing to pay top but fair dollar for. Thank you

    1. Celeste Booth says:

      Hi Mike,
      We don’t sell orchids ourselves. You might try http://www.seattleorchid.com and see if they have any orchids close to what you’re looking for. Best of luck!

  3. Linda says:

    thank you so much for clarifiying the difference between natural black orchids. My son and i have been pondering the question about black orchids. My mother who has green fingers grows the most amazing orchids ive ever seen.
    Once again thank you – its a shame about the lady who does not want to share a picture she took! It was most likely not even grown by her! It’s a blessing to share beautiful things with others. Keep up the good work

    1. Alan Acker says:

      I have in flower now what is quite new to the orchid world known as a black orchard , Monnierara Millennium Magic (witchcraft) FCC/ AOS , its very hard to photograph the beauty of the flower cause of the darkness

  4. ARCHI says:

    THE INFO AND THE PICS WERE FAB.

  5. Jason Thomas says:

    Where would you recommend buying orchid seedlings?

  6. Richard Plummer says:

    I believe they have completely forgotten, the blue Vanda’s

    1. KIm Bruun says:

      Blue vandas aren’t true blue – they’re more like bluish purple. There are also coerulea variants of Cattleya and Phalaenopsis violacea in this colour range. The closest you might come to true blue orchids are probably found in the Thelymitra genus.

  7. There are true blue orchids. Just google Thelymitra for example. Also true black occurs in the lip of the green Coelogyne pandurata

  8. Rick says:

    I saw true black orchids in the jungles on Papua, however it is illegal to remove them from the island

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