Friday, 22 November 2013

From outrageous to affordable ...

It wasn’t that long ago that a yellow orchid called P. Golden Emperor 'Sweet' sold in Taiwan for $100,000. Since 1978, the orchid scene has changed.

How much did you pay for your last orchid? As for me, it was £4.99 at Ikea.

A fascinating article on the Wall Street Journal reflects on how the once hard-to-afford item has become available to the masses, comparing it to flat-panel TVs and laptops.

Orchids now are the best-selling potted flower in the US. It takes a look behind the closed greenhouse doors of Taiwanese entrepreneurs of the popular Phalaenopsis, or the moth orchid, who have applied modern mass marketing techniques to the exotic blooms.

However, they’ve become a victim of their own success and profits are decreasing.

A market for rare orchids still exists, but even that has declined since the mid-20th century when horticulturalists figured out how to clone orchids from tissue cells. 

By Pamela Kelt

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