Now in its 16th year, The Orchid Show, at New York Botanical Garden (NYBG), showcases thousands of dramatically displayed orchids in the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory featuring a series of installations crafted by Daniel Ost. The specially commissioned works pay homage to Ost’s training in ikebana, the Japanese art of flower arranging. In ikebana, artists value the ideas of wabisabi, a philosophy that finds beauty in imperfection, asymmetry, and impermanence.

In the Conservatory’s Palms of the World Gallery, an approximately 18-foot-tall sculpture complements the height of the 90-foot-tall dome overhead. In the Seasonal Exhibition Galleries, his designs speak to the architecture of the glasshouse. Daniel Ost’s designs afforded an opportunity to showcase the widest range of orchid diversity ever presented in The Orchid Show.

In addition to orchids, Ost has selected a range of tropical plants to add color and interest. These “orchid companions” include Kalanchoe, Vrisea, Phormium, croton, dracaena, and more.

With tens of thousands of species thriving in habitats around the globe, orchids are some of the most diverse and well-adapted plants on Earth. Investigate the many unique evolutions and survival mechanisms employed by this colorful family when you visit The Orchid Show.

NYBG remains a sanctuary for a renowned collection of orchid specimens, among which are included many species threatened by poaching, international trade, and habitat loss. Together with nations and botanical institutions around the world, the Garden continues its work to protect and repair the legacy of these important plants.

There are more than 6,000 orchids representing 2,273 taxa (different types) in the Garden’s permanent collection, which has orchids from all of the floristic regions of the world, including Australia, Africa, South America, and Madagascar.

Many wild orchids are at risk of extinction due to over-collection and the destruction of their native habitats. Through the Convention on International Trade in Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), dozens of countries are working together to curb the exploitation of wild species and ensure trade does not threaten their survival. Despite regulations, many orchids are still imported illegally.

The NYBG, a designated Cites Plant Rescue Center since 1990, cares for many confiscated plants. Hundreds of orchids from Brazil, India, Mexico, Peru, the Philippines, and Thailand have arrived here in poor condition, but through careful study of their needs and the use of appropriate horticultural techniques, the Garden has successfully rejuvenated a majority of these ailing specimens.

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