This isn’t a ghost orchid.
It’s one of its domesticated cousins, photographed in January on Key Largo.
Like most flowering plants, orchids don’t bloom forever … but that doesn’t stop us from trying to make them: “where nature leaves off, humans enter with art and science.” Through the botanical technology of hybridization and the exacting care of a gardeners touch, blooms can be made eternal … or at least it sure feels that way.
I’ve always thought that a perpetual bloom dulls the beauty, or dulls our eyes to it.
But if “eternal blooms” is what you want (and many people do) – be prepared, not all blooms are equal, and they can come at a steep price:
Or you could take a walk through the water deep into the swamp (watch out for the snakes) and – if you time it just right – see a bloom in full nature.
Now that’s time well spent … and free.
Never remove an orchid from the wild – it’s illegal and futile:
More than likely you’ll kill the plant (it is very mortal) … and the immortal bloom besides.