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Orchids are woven through Chinese culture. What happens if they vanish?

'Orchids grow where others cannot,' said Confucius, but as wild plants disappear, botanical institutions are helping to preserve both the flowers and the cultural significance attached to themUnfurling across paintings, poems and carvings, Cymbidium orchids are more than just wild plants in China. They are inextricably linked with the country's culture. But this rich blooming of human response to orchids that has endured for millennia is fragile, and as Cymbidium orchids increasingly vanish from the wild so too do the words and knowledge that humans have about them.Every year the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, and the New York Botanical Garden open their doors to thousands of visitors who flock to their orchid shows. Easily grown and long-lasting orchids such as generic Phalaenopsis form the bulk of these temporary displays. But behind the scenes these institutions engage in longer-term work to conserve not just living plants but also records of the culture attached to them. Continue reading...
Zdroj: The Guardian

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