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Vanda Miss Joaquim

Family Name: Orchidaceae
Common Name: Vanda Miss Joaquim, 卓锦万代兰

In 1981, Vanda Miss Joaquim stood out from among 40 flowers and was chosen to be Singapore’s National Flower. Its bright colours, resilience, hardiness and free-flowering nature are qualities that reflect the Singapore spirit. The orchid is named after Miss Agnes Joaquim who successfully crossed the parent species, Vanda teres var. andersonii (♀) and Vanda hookeriana (♂) in 1893, creating Singapore’s first orchid hybrid!

Full Sun Moderate Water Ornamental Flowers Climber, Vine and Liana


Family Name
Genus Epithet
Infraspecific Epithet
Common Names
Species Summary

Classifications and Characteristics

Plant Growth Form Climber, Vine & Liana
Lifespan (in Singapore) Perennial
Mode of Nutrition Autotrophic


Preferred Climate Zone Tropical

Description and Ethnobotany

Growth Form This monopodial orchid hybrid has long, thin stems that require support. It was produced by crossing Papilionanthe teres var. andersonii with Papilionanthe hookeriana.
Flowers The flower is composed of 3 sepals, 2 petals and 1 lip (6 cm high, 5 cm wide). The sepals are the top and lower pair of petal-like structures. Petals are larger and more round than the ovalish sepals. The top sepal and petals are light pink, while the lower sepals are white. The angel-shaped lip in the middle is bright pinkish purple with an orange center that has reddish to purple spots. An inflorescence consists of up to 12 flowers, but typically only 4 flowers are mature at the same time. This hybrid is free-flowering, producing blooms throughout the year in Singapore.
Taxonomy Parentage is P. teres var. andersonii (pod parent) and P. hookeriana (pollen parent). Papilionanthe Miss Joaquim is the current scientifically accepted name, but Vanda Miss Joaquim is a widely known synonym in Singapore.
Cultivation This slow-growing hybrid does best in an open, sunny location with humid, but not stagnant air. It requires heavy fertilization for optimal flowering. The slender stems should be tied to posts for support. The top of the plant needs to grow 40 - 50 cm above the post before it will begin to flower.
Etymology Vanda Miss Joaquim is named after Agnes Joaquim (1854 – 1899) who crossed the parent orchids to obtain this hybrid in 1893. H.N. Ridley, Director of the Singapore Botanic Gardens, in the Gardeners’ Chronicle, 24 June, 1893 stated: “A few years ago Miss [Agnes] Joaquim, a lady residing in Singapore … succeeded in crossing Vanda hookeriana and V. teres, two plants cultivated in almost every garden in Singapore.”

Landscaping Features

Desirable Plant Features Ornamental Flowers
Landscape Uses Flowerbed / Border

Fauna, Pollination and Dispersal

Seed or Spore Dispersal Abiotic

Plant Care and Propagation

Light Preference Full Sun
Water Preference Moderate Water
Planting Remarks High humidity is required.
Fertilizing Heavy fertilization encourages good growth and flowering
Propagation Method Seed, Stem Cutting, Tissue Culture


Foliage Retention Evergreen
Mature Foliage Colour(s) Green
Leaf Area Index (LAI) for Green Plot Ratio 3.5 (Shrub & Groundcover - Monocot)

Floral (Angiosperm)

Flower & Plant Sexuality 1 Bisexual Flowers
Flower Colour(s) Pink, Purple
Flower Symmetry Bilateral

Fruit, Seed and Spore

Fruit Type 1 Dehiscent Dry Fruit
Seed Description Numerous, dust-like seeds lacking endosperm
Seed Quantity Per Fruit Numerous (>20)

Image Repository



Master ID 1246
Species ID 2539
Flora Disclaimer The information in this website has been compiled from reliable sources, such as reference works on medicinal plants. It is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment and NParks does not purport to provide any medical advice. Readers should always consult his/her physician before using or consuming a plant for medicinal purposes.
Species record last updated on: 02 August 2022.