Guaria Morada

The National Flower of Costa Rica

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Costa Rica National Flower is The Blazing Purple Guaria Morada Orchid

The Guaria Morada (Cattleya skinnier) is the Costa Rica National Flower. Costa Rica has a National Treasure that is not an animal. It is a beautiful purple orchid, one of many different types of orchids that can be found throughout the country. Guaria Morada the national flower of Costa Rica and so named on June 15, 1939.

This national beauty blossoms during the months of January through March. It usually produces four to five flowers, each lasting only a limited time. Large, colorful, irregular shaped flowers adorn this beautiful plant accompanied by their captivating scent. This lovely flower receives nutrients from the air and rain reserved in the trunks of trees where they grow. Although this flower is not a parasite, it does rely on its host trees for subsistence.

A common flower

lankester botanical gardens nature at its finest guaria moradaThe Guaria Morada is no stranger in local Costa Rican homes. In fact, “Campesinos,” or indigenous farmers, say the radiant beauty of the flower reflects the beauty of Costa Rican women.

Orchids predominate in a tropical climate, and there are more than 1500 species native to Costa Rica. The Guaria Morada is a fundamental part of the countries folklore and tradition. According to Costa Rican culture, the Guaria Morada is said to bring good fortune and is a powerful symbol of the harmony between families. Also believed to bring peace, love, and hope!

Presently, there is an Annual Orchid Show in Alajuela Costa Rica, usually in October. The Orchid Show in Costa Rica, a fabulous anticipated event for flower lovers. The show is not only a great place to learn about this beautiful plant but also raises awareness about endangered plant species and efforts to protect them such as Cattleya dowiana (Guaria Turrialba), Peristeria elata (Espíritu Santo) Psychopsis krameriana (Mariposa), Trichopilia suavis and Guarianthe skinneri (Guaria Morada – the Costa Rican national flower). The event is held by the Alajuela Orchid Association.

Rincon de la ViejaRincon de la Vieja Mud Bath

A great place to see the Guaria Morada is Rincon de la Vieja National Park. Although most famous as a place for adventure and relaxation with its rafting tours and hot springs, the flower can be spotted in abundance. Make sure you arrange for a tour so you can receive all the information about this gorgeous native!

Lankester Botanical Garden

Bienvenidos Sign Botanical Gardens LankesterThe Ticos are very proud of their national flower and have therefore created the Lankester Botanical Garden as a research and conservation center for the orchid. The botanical garden doesn’t only focus on the national flower, though. Costa Rica has 1400 species of orchids of which 20% are endemic.

The Garden is named after orchidologist and naturalist Charles Lankester who created a private garden inside of his coffee farm. In March of 1973, Mr. Lankester’s garden was donated to the University of Costa Rica. They were the ones who turned it into a botanical garden. Today it is one of the most active scientific institutions of the American Tropics. One of the main attractions of the Lankester Botanical Gardens, is a beautiful Japanese Garden that serves as a unique place for activities such as weddings and meetings.

Lankester has a strong mission in the conservation of Costa Rica’s native flowers and is open to visitors! Adults pay 10USD and students 7.5USD.

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