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Vanda coerulea Orchi 6052.jpg
Vanda coerulea
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Monocots
Order: Asparagales
Family: Orchidaceae
Subfamily: Epidendroideae
Tribe: Vandeae
Subtribe: Aeridinae
Genus: Vanda
Gaud. ex Pfitzer
Type species
Vanda tessellata
  • Ascocentrum Schltr.
  • Euanthe Schltr.
  • Finetia Schltr. 1918, illegitimate homonym, not Gagnep. 1917
  • Neofinetia Hu
  • Nipponorchis Masam. illegitimate
  • Eparmatostigma Garay
  • Trudelia Garay
  • × Trudelianda Garay
  • Christensonia Haager
  • Ascocentropsis Senghas & Schildh.
  • Gunnaria S.C.Chen ex Z.J.Liu & L.J.Chen

Vanda, abbreviated in the horticultural trade as V.,[2] is a genus in the orchid family, Orchidaceae. There are about 87 species,[3] and the genus is commonly cultivated for the marketplace. This genus and its allies are considered to be among the most specifically adapted of all orchids within the Orchidaceae. The genus is highly prized in horticulture for its showy, fragrant, long-lasting, and intensely colorful flowers.[4] Vanda species are widespread across East Asia, Southeast Asia, and New Guinea, with a few species extending into Queensland and some of the islands of the western Pacific.[1][5]


The name "Vanda" is derived from the Sanskrit (वन्दाका)[6] name for the species Vanda roxburghii (a synonym of Vanda tessellata).[7][8]

These mostly epiphytic, but sometimes lithophytic or terrestrial orchids, are distributed in India, Himalaya, Southeast Asia, Indonesia, the Philippines, New Guinea, southern China, and northern Australia.

The genus has a monopodial growth habit with flat, typically broad, ovoid leaves (strap-leaves). Species with cylindrical (terete), fleshy leaves, which are adapted to dry periods were transferred to the genus Papilionanthe. The stems of these orchids vary considerably in size; some are miniature plants and some have a length of several meters. The plants can become quite massive in habitat and in cultivation, and epiphytic species possess very large, rambling aerial root systems. The roots have pneumatodes.[9]

The few to many flattened flowers grow on a lateral inflorescence. Most show a yellow-brown color with brown markings, but they also appear in white, green, orange, red, and burgundy shades. The lip has a small spur. Vanda species usually bloom every few months and the flowers last for two to three weeks.

Many Vanda orchids (especially V. coerulea) are endangered, and have never been common because they are usually only infrequently encountered in habitat and grow only in disturbed forest areas with high light levels, and are severely threatened and vulnerable to habitat destruction.[4] The export of wild-collected specimens of the blue orchid (V. coerulea) and other wild Vanda species is prohibited worldwide, as all orchids are listed on Appendix II of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species.


This genus is one of the five most horticulturally important orchid genera, because it has some of the most magnificent flowers to be found in the orchid family.[citation needed] This has contributed much to the work of hybridists producing flowers for the cut flower market. V. coerulea is one of the few botanical orchids which can produce varieties with blue flowers (actually a very bluish purple), a property much appreciated for producing interspecific and intergeneric hybrids.

The color blue is rare among orchids, and only Thelymitra crinita, a terrestrial species from Australia, produces flowers that are truly "blue" among the orchids, the other being Aganisia cyanea, a lowland species from northern South America that is difficult to cultivate, but has metallic blue flowers. Both of these species, much like Vanda, also have a bluish-purple tint towards the inner petals of the flowers.

Vanda dearei is one of the chief sources of yellow color in Vanda hybrids.

The plants do not possess pseudobulbs, but do possess leathery, drought-resistant leaves. Almost all of the species in this genus are very large epiphytes found in disturbed areas in habitat and prefer very high light levels, the plants having large root systems. Some of these species have a monopodial vine-like growth habit, and the plants can quickly become quite massive.

These plants prefer consistent conditions day-to-day in cultivation to avoid dropping their bottom leaves. The epiphytic species are best accommodated in large wooden baskets, bare rooted, which allows for the large aerial root systems. Disturbing or damaging the roots of large, mature vandaceous orchid plants, and in particular, Vanda and Aerides species, can result in the plants failing to flower and going into decline for a season or more. These plants do not tolerate disturbance or damage of their root systems in cultivation when they become mature. The terete-leaved terrestrial species are very easy to cultivate.

When grown bare-rooted, the epiphytic species require daily watering and weekly feeding and are very heavy feeders in cultivation. They can be grown out-of-doors in Hawaii and the like provided they are given some shade.

Fungal infections[edit]

Cross section of Vanda stem infected with Fusarium, exhibiting typical purple spotting of vascular tissue

Unfortunately fungal infections are not uncommon in cultivated plants. A variety of phytopathogens may infect Vanda orchids. Vandas may be affected by Fusarium wilt. This disease is characterized by purple discolouration in the vascular tissue, which results in the loss of their function. The hyphae and spores block the conductor vessels. Affected plants may superficially appear healthy, as they continue to grow, the oldest parts of the plants can be affected and the disease will eventually progress throughout the entire plant.[10] If cutting tools are not sterilized the infection may spread to other plants.[11]


In a recent molecular study of the genus Vanda ,[12] several Genera including the former Genus Ascocentrum, Neofinetia and Euanthe were brought into synonym with Vanda,[13][14]


The following is a list of Vanda species recognised by the World Checklist of Selected Plant Families as at January 2019:[15]

Vanda ampullacea
Vanda Robert's Delight
Vanda tricolor
Vanda falcata
Vanda hindsii by Lewis Roberts
Vanda lamellata
Photo of small orchid Vanda garayi in bloom, isolated on a black background.
Vanda garayi

Natural hybrids[edit]

  • Vanda × boumaniae (V. insignis × V. limbata) (Lesser Sunda Is.)
  • Vanda × charlesworthii (V. bensonii × V. coerulea) (Myanmar)
  • Vanda × confusa (V. coerulescens × V. lilacina) (Myanmar)
  • Vanda × hebraica (V. denisoniana × V. brunnea) (Myanmar)[16]

Intergeneric hybrids[edit]

Vanda Pachara Delight
Vanda Robert's Delight 'Crownfox Magic'
Vanda Sansai Blue

The following is a list of hybrid genera (nothogenera) in which hybrids vandas with orchids of other genera are placed although many of these are invalid because of recent taxonomic changes. For instance, Ascocenda (Ascocentrum x Vanda) and Vandofinetia (Vanda x Neofinetia) are no longer valid because both Ascocentrum and Neofinetia have been reduced to synonyms of Vanda by RHS, which is in charge of the International Orchid Register:

  • Aeridovanda (Aerides × Vanda)
  • Aeridovanisia (Aerides × Luisia × Vanda)
  • Alphonsoara (Arachnis × Ascocentrum × Vanda × Vandopsis)
  • Andrewara (Arachnis × Renanthera × Trichoglottis × Vanda)
  • Aranda (Arachnis × Vanda)
  • Ascocenda (Ascocentrum × Vanda)
  • Ascovandoritis (Ascocentrum × Doritis × Vanda)
  • Bokchoonara (Arachnis × Ascocentrum × Phalaenopsis × Vanda)
  • Bovornara (Arachnis × Ascocentrum × Rhynchostylis × Vanda)
  • Burkillara (Aerides × Arachnis × Vanda)
  • Charlieara (Rhynchostylis × Vanda × Vandopsis)
  • Christieara (Aerides × Ascocentrum × Vanda)
  • Darwinara (Ascocentrum × Neofinetia × Rhynchostylis × Vanda)
  • Debruyneara (Ascocentrum × Luisia × Vanda)
  • Devereuxara (Ascocentrum × Phalaenopsis × Vanda)
  • Eastonara (Ascocentrum × Gastrochilus × Vanda)
  • Fujiora (Ascocentrum × Trichoglottis × Vanda)
  • Goffara (Luisia × Rhynchostylis × Vanda)
  • Hawaiiara (Renanthera × Vanda × Vandopsis)
  • Hagerara (Doritis × Phalaenopsis × Vanda)
  • Himoriara (Ascocentrum × Phalaenopsis × Rhynchostylis × Vanda)
  • Holttumara (Arachnis × Renanthera × Vanda)
  • Isaoara (Aerides × Ascocentrum × Phalaenopsis × Vanda)
  • Joannara (Renanthera × Rhynchostylis × Vanda)
  • Kagawara (Ascocentrum × Renanthera × Vanda)
  • Knappara (Ascocentrum × Rhynchostylis × Vanda × Vandopsis)
  • Knudsonara (Ascocentrum × Neofinetia × Renanthera × Rhynchostylis × Vanda)
  • Leeara (Arachnis × Vanda × Vandopsis)
  • Luisanda (Luisia × Vanda)
  • Luivanetia (Luisia × Neofinetia × Vanda)
  • Lewisara (Aerides × Arachnis × Ascocentrum × Vanda)
  • Maccoyara (Aerides × Vanda × Vandopsis)
  • Macekara (Arachnis × Phalaenopsis × Renanthera × Vanda × Vandopsis)
  • Micholitzara (Aerides × Ascocentrum × Neofinetia × Vanda)
  • Moirara (Phalaenopsis × Renanthera × Vanda)
  • Mokara (Arachnis × Ascocentrum × Vanda)
  • Nakamotoara (Ascocentrum × Neofinetia × Vanda)
  • Nobleara (Aerides × Renanthera × Vanda)
  • Okaara (Ascocentrum × Renanthera × Rhynchostylis × Vanda)
  • Onoara (Ascocentrum × Renanthera × Vanda × Vandopsis)
  • Opsisanda (Vanda × Vandopsis)
  • Pageara (Ascocentrum × Luisia × Rhynchostylis × Vanda)
  • Pantapaara (Ascoglossum × Renanthera × Vanda)
  • Paulara (Ascocentrum × Doritis × Phalaenopsis × Renanthera × Vanda)
  • Pehara (Aerides × Arachnis × Vanda × Vandopsis)
  • Pereiraara (Aerides × Rhynchostylis × Vanda)
  • Phalaerianda (Aerides × Phalaenopsis × Vanda)
  • Raganara (Renanthera × Trichoglottis × Vanda)
  • Ramasamyara (Arachnis × Rhynchostylis × Vanda)
  • Renafinanda (Neofinetia × Renanthera × Vanda)
  • Renanda (Arachnis × Renanthera × Vanda)
  • Renantanda (Renanthera × Vanda)
  • Rhynchovanda (Rhynchostylis × Vanda)
  • Ridleyare (Arachnis × Trichoglottis × Vanda)
  • Robinaria (Aerides × Ascocentrum × Renanthera × Vanda)
  • Ronnyara (Aerides × Ascocentrum × Rhynchostylis × Vanda)
  • Sanjumeara (Aerides × Neofinetia × Rhynchostylis × Vanda)
  • Sarcovanda (Sarcochilus × Vanda)
  • Shigeuraara (Ascocentrum × Ascoglossum × Renanthera × Vanda)
  • Stamariaara (Ascocentrum × Phalaenopsis × Renanthera × Vanda)
  • Sutingara (Arachnis × Ascocentrum × Phalaenopsis × Vanda × Vandopsis)
  • Teohara (Arachnis × Renanthera × Vanda × Vandopsis)
  • Trevorara (Arachnis × Phalaenopsis × Vanda)
  • Trichovanda (Trichoglottis × Vanda)
  • Vascostylis (Ascocentrum × Rhynchostylis × Vanda)
  • Vandachnis (Arachnis × Vandopsis)
  • Vancampe (Acampe × Vanda)
  • Vandachostylis (Rhynchostylis × Vanda)
  • Vandaenopsis (Phalaenopsis × Vanda)
  • Vandaeranthes (Aeranthes × Vanda)
  • Vandewegheara (Ascocentrum × Doritis × Phalaenopsis × Vanda)
  • Vandofinetia (Neofinetia × Vanda)
  • Vandofinides (Aerides × Neofinetia × Vanda)
  • Vandoritis (Doritis × Vanda)
  • Vanglossum (Ascoglossum × Vanda)
  • Wilkinsara (Ascocentrum × Vanda × Vandopsis)
  • Yapara (Phalaenopsis × Rhynchostylis × Vanda)
  • Yusofara (Arachnis × Ascocentrum × Renanthera × Vanda)
  • Yonezawaara (Neofinetia × Rhynchostylis × Vanda)


  1. ^ a b Kew World Checklist of Selected Plant Families
  2. ^ "Alphabetical list of standard abbreviations of all generic names occurring in current use in orchid hybrid registration as at 31st December 2007" (PDF). Royal Horticultural Society.
  3. ^ Motes, M. R. (2021). The Natural Genus Vanda. Redland Press.
  4. ^ a b The Orchids, Natural History and Classification, Robert L. Dressler. ISBN 0-674-87526-5
  5. ^ Flora of China v 25 p 471, 万代兰属 wan dai lan shu, Vanda Jones ex R. Brown, Bot. Reg. 6: ad t. 506. 1820.
  6. ^ vandAkA Sanskrit English Dictionary, University of Koeln, Germany
  7. ^ Jones D.L.; et al. (2006). "Vanda". Australian Tropical Rainforest Orchids. Centre for Australian National Biodiversity Research (CANBR), Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Australian Government. Retrieved 16 March 2021.
  8. ^ Garay, L. (1972), On the systematics of the monopodial orchids, Bot. Mus. Leafl. Harvard University, 23(4): 149-212
  9. ^ Eschrich, W. (1995). Gaswechsel. In Funktionelle Pflanzenanatomie (pp. 75-109). Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg.
  10. ^ Pedroso-de-Moraes, C., Souza, M. C. D., Ronconi, C. C., & Marteline, M. A. (2011). Response of Cattleya hybrids for Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cattleyae Foster. Brazilian Archives of Biology and Technology, 54(2), 267-271.
  11. ^ Reddy, P. P. (2016). Orchids. In Sustainable Crop Protection under Protected Cultivation (pp. 393-407). Springer, Singapore.
  12. ^ Lim, S. (1999). "RAPD Analysis of Some Species in the GenusVanda(Orchidaceae)". Annals of Botany. 83 (2): 193–196. doi:10.1006/anbo.1998.0801.
  13. ^ "Vanda sanderiana | International Plant Names Index".
  14. ^ "World Checklist of Selected Plant Families: Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew".
  15. ^ World Checklist of Selected Plant Families : Vanda
  16. ^ Motes, M., Gardiner, L. M., & Roberts, D. L. (2016). The identity of spotted Vanda denisoniana. Orchid Review, 124(1316), 228-233.

Further reading[edit]

  • Grove, D. L. 1995. Vandas and Ascocendas. Timber Press, Portland, Oregon. 241 pp.
  • Motes, Martin R., and Alan L. Hoffman. 1997 Vandas, Their botany, history and culture. ISBN 0-88192-376-1

External links[edit]