Orchids growing in glass bottles at
Five orchid species native to
Fairchild's program is based on a project at
At Fairchild, countless orchids in various stages of green, early growth currently fill about 1,500 bottles on shelves lit by white or blue and red lights.
Orchids produce millions of dust-like seeds but never would be this productive in the wild, Fairchild Director
"What we can do in this lab is we can make every single one of those seeds grow," he said. "This kind of artificial situation allows us to tip the odds dramatically in our favor. If we do that over a five-year period, then we think these orchids can recover on their own."
The project is cultivating five species: the
Municipal landscaping since Hurricane Andrew devastated
"Now the trees are here, we just need to get the orchids back into the trees," Lewis said. "Once you look above the city streets into the canopy, you'll find conditions that are very similar to what would be in any native hardwood hammock before development."
Volunteers oversee the lab work, and Fairchild partnered with arborists and schools in
Public fascination with
"A million orchids, we think, will satisfy any demand that exists out there," he said.
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