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Orchids 101: The biology behind these elegant flowers

By: Anna Norris on Jan. 21, 2014, 9:19 a.m.
Cochleanthes amazonica

Photo: Anna Norris

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Patterns with a purpose

Orchids like the Cochleanthes amazonica shown here may have simple patterns, but those patterns have a very specific purpose: to show pollinators where to go. Think of these beautiful deep purple lines as landing strips for insects!