Popular Kinds of Flowers

The top three most searched flowers are roses, orchids and tulips, according to the FlowersFloralFlorist website. In 4th to 10th places on the top 10 list of most searched flowers are hibiscus, sunflowers, hydrangeas, daisies, magnolias, irises and lilies. Despite the fact that all 10 flowers have their own special appeal and history, there are good reasons why the top three are the world's most popular flowers.

Roses

An imprint on slate at the Florissant Fossil Beds in Colorado proves that the rose grew there at least 40 million years ago. The rose is the world’s most popular flower, for its exquisite beauty and dazzling varieties and colors. Early civilizations, including the Chinese, Egyptians, Greeks and Romans, first cultivated roses. The oldest known cultivated rose, Rosa gallica, dates back to the 12th century B.C. Its descendant, Rosa alba, represented England’s House of York in the historic War of the Roses, which led to the rose becoming England’s national flower. The 12th and 13th centuries saw roses travel to Europe with soldiers returning from the Crusades. In North America, many lovely roses grew in the wild, including Rosa virginiana, the first species noted in English literature. In general terms, roses prefer lots of sun and well-drained soil. They are stars, so it is best to allow ample room all around rosebushes. Place them against a fence backdrop for best effect, and never overwater, because they sulk with “wet feet.”

Orchids

Orchids (Orchidaceae family) are like small works of art, so it is understandable that they are popular as gifts. Thailand is world famous for its exotic orchids, from the Epidendrum genus, with over 1,000 species, to the Cymbidium genus, with about 40 species, which make lovely cut flowers, and the Brassavola genus, with highly fragrant, mostly white orchids. Kent in England is home to wild orchids, many with interesting characteristics. The monkey orchid (Orchis simia), for example, does appear to house tiny monkey paws and tails among its mauvish-pink form. Then there are mysterious orchids like Dendrophylax lindenii or the ghost orchid, a rare species that grows in guarded locations in South Florida. In the Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary in Naples, a large ghost orchid grows about 45 feet high in a tree. Orchids can be beautiful house plants, provided they have the right temperature, light, watering and humidity, which differ among the various groups. Do some research before buying an orchid to be certain your area meets all its growing conditions.

Tulips

The revered status of the tulip (Tulipa) through history reflects the unwavering popularity of this springtime bloom. In Holland, crazed tulip speculation during the 17th century, called Tulipomania, drove prices to exorbitant heights and to an eventual crash in 1637. Turkey celebrated tulips in the 1700s with a night festival lit by crystal lanterns and attended by guests adorned in colors that complemented the tulips. Today, the tulip remains an honored guest in gardens worldwide, growing from bulbs planted in well-drained soil and enjoying full sun.

Keywords: worldwide popular flowers, Rosa gallica, Dendrophylax lindenii

About this Author

Based in Northern California, Maureen Katemopoulos has been a freelance writer for more than 25 years. Her articles on travel, the arts, cuisine and history have appeared in publications such as "Stanislaus Magazine," "Orientations," "The Asia Magazine" and "The Peninsula Group Magazine." She holds a Baccalaureate degree in journalism from Stanford University.