Orchids Forever: Botanical Garden’s annual show triggers spring fever in Cleveland

This time of year, at the end of the winter season, it’s sometimes hard to remember that there are warmer days around corner. Luckily, Holden Forests & Gardens is giving Clevelanders a floral escape at its 16th annual flower show, “Orchids Forever: Synergy and Survival” through Sunday, March 13 at the Cleveland Botanical Garden.

The Synergy and Survival theme this year focuses on the special relationship orchids have with their pollinators. Orchids can be found on every continent, as they survive in most ecosystems. This ability to survive is largely due to their dependence on other living things like fungi, trees, and even animals.

In recent years, orchids have been threatened by climate change. Holden Forests & Gardens caretakers says they hope the annual show will raise awareness for these flowers and the environmental issues that affect them.

“The mystique and elegance of orchids highlights the wonder and beauty found in nature and experiencing these plants up close showcases the importance of protecting them from increasing threats of climate change,” explains Jill Koski, Holden president and CEO. “I encourage you to escape the grey, cold winter weather and find joy in a visit to ‘Orchids Forever.’”

Since Jan. 29, thousands of orchids have filled the Botanical Garden, giving Northeast Ohioans a much-needed glimpse of spring. In addition to the flowers, there are life-sized art installations of orchids and pollinators suspended from the ceiling.

In the Glasshouse, attendees can read more about orchids and how they survive in different biomes. A series of graphic panels is displayed, explaining how these flowers support their own ecosystems.

Plant displays and large graphics of pollinators can be found in the Epigg Gallery. This part of the exhibit examines the orchid-pollinator relationship and explains how this partnership benefits the environment.

Unlike most flowers, pollinators preserve orchids in the wild. While guests will get a general overview of pollination here, they will also see how orchids and their pollinators differ from most flowers.

Additionally, there is virtual programming scheduled, including the always popular Ask the Orchid Doctor clinics, which will run throughout the show.

There is a basic orchid care clinic thus Saturday, Feb. 20 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.; and a lecture on orchid conservation, “Orchids on the Edge: Conservation in a Changing World,” on Saturday, March 6 from 10 a.m. to 11a.m. with Dr. Lawrence W. Zettler, biology professor at Illinois College.

Those who are ready to try raising orchids at home can shop in the garden store to purchase orchids, including some exotic varieties, orchid pots, soil, and fertilizer.

 “Orchids Forever” runs until Sunday, April 11. Hours are Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Fridays and Saturdays from 12 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. and Sundays from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for children ages three to 12. Children two and under are admitted free, as are Holden Forests & Gardens members. available online, and advance reservations are strongly encouraged. Masks are required and guests must practice social distancing.

For specific hours and to claim your spot, click here. The Botanical Garden is located at 11030 East Blvd. in University Circle.