Orchids are the second largest families of flowering plants and are distributed throughout the world. They may be epiphytic, terrestrial and lithophytic. In addition to global cut flower trades, orchids are also harvested, grown and traded for a variety of purposes, including as potted ornamental plants, medicinal products and food.
Brazilian Cattleya, Mexican Laelia and Indian Cymbidium, Vanda and Dendrobium have played a major role in developing present day beautiful hybrid orchids which numbers more than 300000.
The international trade is dominated by a small number of genera viz. Cymbidium, Dendrobium, Phalaenopsis, Cattleya and Oncidium with huge number of hybrids.
In India, some of native genera like Cymbidium, Paphiopedilum, Vanda, Arachnis and Dendrobium are grown on a large scale with good agricultural practices for cut flower production.