Origin and symbolism


The history of cut Cymbidium goes back to 1900. During this period, the English brought over the first Cymbidium plants from the Himalayas in Asia. They started to cross them and gradually more varieties and colours were produced. Nowadays there are more than 1,000 varieties of Cymbidium available all year round, with a supply peak in autumn and winter.

The Himalayan landscape consists mainly of rocks and it can cool down considerably at night. Despite its tropical appearance, the Cymbidium is not a sun worshiper. Luckily, the flowers are robust and even in such harsh conditions it can show off its beautifully coloured flowers! Cymbidium can still be found in the wild in Australia and Asia; in countries such as Nepal, Vietnam and Taiwan.

Did you know

The word Cymbidium comes from Greek. The Greek word for ‘boat’ is ‘kymbos’ and the word Cymbidium is derived from that. The lip of the flower looks a bit like a boat which is how the Cymbidium gets its name!

Family portrait

Cymbidium belongs to the cut orchid flower family. In addition to Cymbidium, this family also includes other cut orchids: Phalaenopsis, Vanda, Cattleya, Paphiopedilum, Dendrobium and Oncidium.


Cymbidium symbolises pure, valued and respected friendship. The act of giving the flower is seen as an honour as well as receiving it. It is not surprising that the flower is a popular gift for good friends in China. The flower also stands for morality and virtue.

The Cymbidium gets some extra symbolism from the orchid family tree. In ancient Greece, orchids stood for masculinity and fertility. Later, the flower were praised more highly in Europe for their beauty, strength and opulence.

More product information, inspiration and facts about the origin and symbolism of Cymbidium can be found on the website Mooiwatbloemendoen.nl

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