Smithsonian + US Botanic Garden Orchid Exhibit 2023

2023 Orchid Exhibit in DC

Oh hi there, I’m just over here killing it at blogging (lol, I haven’t posted here since last November). I hope you’re doing well and enjoying your orchids, if you grow any! Many orchids in my collection are blooming, and I still need to sit down and post about them. In the meantime, I’ll share with you my visit to the orchid exhibit that the Smithsonian Gardens hosts annually in collaboration with the US Botanic Garden here in Washington DC.

This year’s exhibit is called “Discover the World of Orchids” and it runs from February 17 to April 30, 2023 at the US Botanic Garden.

Orchid Exhibit 2023
Yes, I’m still masking in most indoor situations.

I’m going to be honest and say that I found this year’s exhibit to be rather underwhelming in comparison to past years. I suppose that could be because last year’s exhibit in the Kogod Courtyard was so wonderful, and I might have had some extra excitement about it because it was the first orchid show I had been to since before the pandemic. However, the last time the orchid exhibit was held at the USBG was in 2018 and there were a lot more orchids on display in the space. Maybe they’ve had budget cuts or something…who knows.

Okay, enough complaining from me—my husband and I still enjoyed viewing beautiful orchids!

You can’t go wrong with some buttery yellow Phalaenopsis blooms with pink stripes:

Phalaenopsis orchids

I was happy to spot a gorgeous fuchsia peloric Phalaenopsis in the large orchid display seen in this post’s first photo:

Peloric Phalaenopsis orchid

I’ve seen this Phal at the USBG before, but it captures my attention every time:

Speckled Phalaenopsis orchid

I didn’t spot the tag for this orchid, but it looks like some kind of Dendrobium. The coloring on these blooms is so unique:

Dendrobium orchid

This Cymbidium Baltic Dew ‘Freckle Face’ AM/AOS has such gorgeous details:

Cymbidium Baltic Dew 'Freckle Face' AM/AOS

A few white orchids caught my eye, including this light blush-tinted Paphiopedilum Rosy Dawn:

Paphiopedilum Rosy Dawn

White orchids are difficult for me to photograph well, but I did manage to snap a decent pic of this Dendrobium nobile:

Dendrobium nobile

The green-and-yellow center of this daintily freckled Paphiopedilum albion really pops!

Paphiopedilum albion

This Enanthleya Magic Wand would make such good fall decor (if it ever blooms then):

Enanthleya Magic Wand

Spiders are my nemeses, but I do love this green Brassia gireoudiana (this genus is commonly called the Spider Orchid….ew).

Brassia gireoudiana

The sunlight streaming into the main entry hall really lit up some of the pale lavender-colored Phalaenopsis on display:

Light pink Phalaenopsis orchid

There were many stunning Paphiopedilums in different areas throughout the garden:

Paphiopedilum orchid

I’m pretty sure I’ve seen Wardian cases filled with orchids here before, but they always make me googly-eyed. I just adore this type of display:

Wardian cases of orchids

We spotted this sunny yellow Oncidium by the door on our way out:

Yellow Oncidium orchid

Above are my favorite photos from this year’s orchid exhibit! Though I wasn’t overly impressed with the exhibit itself, I may still return before it ends and see if they’ve swapped out or added any orchids. The USBG is a lovely place to to visit anytime, and it’s compact enough that it doesn’t take a ton of time to go through.

Are you planning on going to the 2023 Orchid Exhibit at the USBG (or have you already stopped by)? Let me know what you thought of it in the comments.

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