Thanks to its tropical climate Colombia is fortunate enough to be blessed with incredible biodiversity that contains over 1,400 species of flowers.
With its rich landscapes and tropical features, Colombia has actually become one of the most important flower exporters in the world, with many nations wanting a piece of their beautiful, unique flora. With the second-largest abundance of plants in the world, there is a lot to choose from.
If you’re looking to add some unique tropical flowers to your garden or simply want to learn more about the world of flowers then you’ve come to the right place.
Colombia has 10% of all plant species in the world so we want to try and show you some of the best that you may even be able to grow in your backyard.
In this list, we will look at the most popular, most unique, and of course the most beautiful flowers that can be found in Colombia. At the end of this blog, you should have a greater understanding of what flowers you can find in Colombia and if they have any meaning in Colombian culture.
Cattleya Trianae Orchid
We’ll start our list with the national flower of Colombia. Also known as May flower or Colombian orchid, this flower is named after the Colombian doctor José Jerônimo Triana.
This extraordinary epiphyte flower grows on trees with colors varying from pastel pink and lilac with a yellow center. The delicate flower with approximately five petals adds simple beauty to a garden.
Acacallis Cyanea Orchid
Another type of orchid that thrives in the Colombina forest or along river edges is the acacallis cyanea orchid. Part of this plant is submerged in water. Only the flower sticks out. The light green leaves tend to grow to 20cm, the flower growing up to 35cm tall.
The unique, strange-looking flower on this plant usually blooms in an intense purple color with a shade of yellow and white towards the middle. In the Amazon, it is considered a sacred flower as it produces oxygen and purifies the air.
The Victoria Amazonica flower is arguably the most beautiful on this list. It is the largest of the water lily family and brings plenty of beautiful color to rivers and lakes in the Amazon. This flower has large 3m leaves that float on top of the water on a submerged stalk.
The flowers then rise high above the leaves on a thick stalk up to 40cm tall. Blooming daily the flower opens at sunrise to reveal gorgeous multi-layered vibrant petals purple, white, or yellow in color.
After sowing, the Heliconia plant takes four months to flower. Heliconia are herbaceous, perennial plants with a height varying from 90-120cm. They are highly sought after around the world because of their tropical colors, unique shapes, and long life. The claw-like flowers bloom in clusters.
They are typically red, purple, orange, yellow, pink, or green in color and can be grown in cooler climates between February and November. In Colombia it is believed that heliconia will keep you young and beautiful.
Reaching up to 2m in height the ginger shampoo plant is one of Colombia’s wonderfully weird flowers. Sat at the top of tall thick stems sit brightly-colored pinecone-shaped inflorescences.
Starting off a waxy green color the shampoo flower slowly changes until it reaches a dark shade of red at maturity. The flower produces suds similar to that found in shampoo hence the name ginger shampoo. The suds can actually help repair your hair and prevent dandruff.
Heliconia Bird Of Paradise
The next flower on our list was introduced to Colombia. This herbaceous plant from the Heliconia family produces a very noticeable flower that when in bloom looks just like the bird of paradise in flight.
This stunning multi-colored flower looks amazing in a bouquet of flowers thanks to its strong red, blue, and orange colors. Flowering from summer to spring this flower will add a burst of tropical color to your garden.
The Colombian rose is grown in fertile soils where the climate is warm during the day and cool in the evenings. In Colombia, the rose like in many cultures is considered to be a nostalgic symbol of love, affection, and pure feelings.
Roses are climbing shrubs with prickly stems and a round flower head surrounded by symmetrical layers of delicate petals. The most popular color of rose is red but they can also be cultivated in pink, orange, white, and blue.
A sugar flower is recognized by its round shape and lovely colors. You will usually find the sugar flower in the shade of green and red, red and white, or yellow and pink. Blooming all year round they guarantee a garden full of color even in the darker winter months.
A unique feature of the sugar flower is how the flowers dance as they close together. In Colombia, sugar flowers are widely used as an outside decoration to symbolize innocence.
Next on our list is the begonia tuberosa. This flower really stands out within the genus of begonias. It is seen throughout the world as it is exported in flower arrangements. Its flowers have a fleshy, hairy surface.
They come in yellow, pink, orange, and white and reach about 8cm tall. This flower can be easily grown all year round in warm climates. In some cultures, the begonia is seen as a sign of deep friendship.
San Joaquin is a small hibiscus shrub that grows to roughly five meters in height. Its large vibrant flowers have five petals varying massively in color. This species can be red, pink, orange, white, and yellow in color.
Although they aren’t actually native to Colombia they are commonly seen and consumed throughout the country. The flower is said to have a spinach-like taste, also making a beautiful decoration on a special occasion.
Geraniums can be grown all over the world which is great because they offer natural beauty and divine sweet, floral aromas. They are very hardy flowers that are ideal for outdoor decoration or flower beds.
Available in purple, orange, red, and white each bloom has teardrop-shaped petals all of a uniform size. They are the perfect flower if you want a bright, classy garden. The geranium is also a symbol of resilience and comfort.
This flower is one of the most sought-after due to its variety of shapes and range of colors. Each stem on the tulip plant has one solitary flower consisting of six soft petals. In the middle of each tulip sits a small stem containing seeds.
Tulips have quite a unique look because the bell-shaped flower seems closed. Often arranged in a bouquet or given as a gift, tulips have a variety of meanings depending on their color. In white, they are a sign of purity. In yellow they are a sign of friendship and joy.
Carnations have unique spiral petals that give off a powerful sweet smell similar to honey. They display a charming array of colors such as purple, white, red, and pink, helping the flower stand out in any garden.
Typically the flower blooms with one color, but they can also have two colored petals if you’re lucky. Columbia isn’t the native home of tulips but the country is still the biggest exporter. Considered to be a flirty flower, full of love and happiness you can easily grow carnations at home.
There are approximately 150 species of this type of cayenne in Colombia, varying in color and size. The cayenne plant produces one-of-a-kind strong colored flowers that feature six symmetrical petals and a protruding pistil that stands out from the plant.
It is its strong red or yellow color and interesting aromas that make this flower so popular.
Also referred to by the name red ginger or ostrich plume this plant has a unique showy flower that consists of long vibrant colored red bracts. The large red flower looks like the bloom but in fact, the true flower is actually the tiny white flower on top.
If you decide to plant this flower ensure you give it plenty of water throughout the season so that the soil stays nice and moist. Once flowered you can water the flower sparingly.
We have only scratched the surface when it comes to incredible, unique flowers that can be found in Colombia. There are so many the list could be endless, however, in this list, we have given you a good taste of what’s out there.
As you can see from the list not all flowers in Colombia are used just to make a garden look nice. Some are used in food and decoration, while others are used to show love and affection to somebody you have feelings for.
Despite Colombia having an incredibly diverse tropical landscape a lot of the flowers can actually be grown all around the world. Most flowers simply need good warm conditions to grow and flower successfully. You can do this in your garden by taking a caring and patient approach.
Now you know there are plants from Colombia you can grow at home why not give it a go. Take some of the flowers from this list and further your knowledge so you can effectively add a tropical color and style to your garden.
In no time you will be able to use flowers you have grown to add bursts of color to a bouquet for that special somebody.