Therapeutic orchids of Asia by Singapore Memories : Rhynchostylis
Orchids are extremely diverse, not only in its visual but also in the way they smell. Most orchids sold in florist or supermarket are usually not fragrant at all unless you visit an orchid farm. Sometimes, orchids fragrance can be sweet and some can be smelling like rotting meat.
Some of the orchids that is commonly being used for its fragrance include Miltoniopsis santanaei (small white flower yet emit a wonderful rose scent), Oncidium Sharry Baby (smell similar to chocolate and vanilla) and Rhynchostylis gigantea (have very huge flowers which give off strong citrusy notes). Interested to find out more about orchid scents? Head down to Jetaime Perfumery Workshop! They have tons of orchids smell including the above mentioned few.
Even though it can be interesting to smell the different tones in each orchid, it is also interesting to know what kind of properties each orchid has, that can help us in our life.
Dendrobium chrysanthum Lindl.
Chinese name: Banchunshihu, Suhuashihu, Dahuangcao, Shuidabang, Jin Lan
Indian name: Mera leikham in Manipati dialect
Thai names: Ueang sai moragole; Ueang thian, Bai morakot, Ueang kham sai, Ueang pu loei, Ueang sai Morakot
It is recorded in the TCM, the plant is used as a tonic. The pseudobulb beneﬁts the stomach, reduces fever, and eliminates thirst and anorexia.
Dendrobium chrysotoxum Lindl.
Thai names: Uang Khan, Ueang kham
Vietnamese name: Kim diep
Myanmar names: Shwe tu, Mout khan war
In Taiwan, this plant can be used as shihu while in China, the flowers are being commercially sold to be made into tea.
Den crepidatum Lindl. & Paxton,
Chinese name: Meigui Shihu (rose Dendrobium)
Thai name: Uang sai nam khieo
This orchid is one of the 199 medicinal plants that is being used by the Hani ethnicity in Yunan. In TCM, it’s stems are used to benefit stomach, helps clear dry and itchy throat. While in Nepal, they use the stems to treat fractures.
Dendrobium crumenatum Sw.
Indonesian: Anggerik Merpati (dove orchid); Anggerik Bawang (onion orchid); Bunga Angin (wind ﬂower)
Thai: Wai tamoi; Bua klang hoa; Sae phra in; Thiam ling; Dawk mai wai, Ueang Mali
Vietnamese: Tuyel mai
Indian name: Jivanti
In Malaysia and Indonesia, the juice extracted from the pseudobulbs was dropped into the ear to treat pain caused by small abscesses, boils or other intractable swellings in the external ear. While in India, it was used to treat nervous ailments and cholera. It can also be used for affections of the brain and nerves.
Dendrobium crystallinum Rchb. f.
Chinese name: Hainanjinmao Shihu
Thai Names: Ueang sai sam si, Ueang nang fawn
Myanmar Name: Setkhu pan
Entire plant is used as medicine and it has a long history of usage as shihu.
Dendrobium cumulatum Lindl.
Thai names: Thian phaya in, thian thong, Uang sai si dok
Stems are used to treat asthma.
Dendrobium denneanum Kerr
Chinese name: Ma pien Shihu
It is used as a tonic. Similarly to D. chrysanthum, the pseudobulb beneﬁts the stomach, reduces fever, and eliminates thirst and anorexia.
Photo credit: Flickr, OrchidRoots, Wikimedia, Wikipedia,