As a large subcontinent with a wide range of climate zones, India is able to produce many flowers for domestic use and for export. Some flowers are exported as cut flowers, while other flowers are exported as bulbs, seeds or whole plants. Because many countries have restrictions on the importation of agricultural products, trading companies familiar with Indian export regulations and the import regulations of many potential markets are usually involved in the export of Indian flowers.
Roses are grown throughout India. A number of trading companies export roses and are familiar with the import-export requirements for flowers. Many varieties are fragrant, scented roses, like "Gruss en Tepelitz," but older rose varieties like "Queen Elizabeth," "Super Star," "Montezuma," "Papa Meilland," and "Christian Dior" are often grown as cut flowers. Other cut flower varieties include the "Eiffel Tower," "Kiss of Fire," "Golden Giant," and "Garde Henkel."
Tuberoses, also known as Polyanthus lilies, are also common Indian exports. Tuberoses have spikes of ivory-colored flowers that are appreciated for their fragrance and as an accent flower in Western bouquets. Tuberoses can produce as many as 50 florets on long spikes and grow from bulbs. Tuberoses grow to between 18 and 48 inches tall and flower in the spring or summer. Tuberoses are very sensitive to cold, and will not survive temperatures lower than 50 degrees Fahrenheit.
Gladiolus are also commonly exported from India. Gladiolus, often called glads, grow from bulb-like structures called corms. Glads grow in a variety of colors. The corms won't overwinter well, and should be dug up and stored in mesh bags at between 35 and 41 degrees F for the winter. Although commonly grown in temperate parts of India, other areas are now able to grow these flowers due to advancements in cultivation techniques.
Orchids are grown both for domestic use and as exports in many parts of India. Common varieties include "Dendrobiums," "Vanda," "Paphiopedilums," "Oncidiums," "Phalaenopsis" and "Cymbidiums." As nearby countries develop orchid industries, many buy young plants from Indian orchid growers. There are nearly 1,300 species of orchid native to India, with most originating in the Himalayas. Terrestrial orchids are more common in northwest India. Tree-growing orchids are more common in the northeast.