If you are wondering about the spiritual and symbolic meaning of purple orchids, you have come to the right place. These exotic flowers have captivated people for centuries with their alluring shapes and colors.

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the rich history and meaning behind purple orchids to help you understand what they represent.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer: purple orchids symbolize wisdom, respect, nobility, pride, admiration, splendor, royalty, luxury, creativity, and passion. Their unique color signifies spiritual awakening and divine protection.

In this article, we will uncover the origin of purple orchids, their presence across different cultures and faiths including Christianity, their representation in ancient mythology, symbolism in color psychology, and significance in practices like feng shui and flower remedies.

The Origins and History of Purple Orchids

Native Habitats and Regions

Purple orchids originate from tropical and subtropical regions like Southern Mexico, Central America, the Caribbean islands, and Northern South America.

  • Popular purple orchid species like Laelia purpurata and Cattleya skinneri are native to Central American countries like Costa Rica, Guatemala, and Panama.
  • Other purple orchid species hail from Mexico, Belize, Colombia, Venezuela, and Ecuador.
  • First Recorded Sightings and Cultivation

    The first documented discovery of purple orchids dates back to 1837, when the stunning Laelia purpurata species with large, vibrant purple flowers was found in Costa Rica.

  • The mesmerizing beauty and rarity of L.

    purpurata spurred British aristocrats and orchid enthusiasts to collect samples and attempt growing them in Victorian glasshouses in the 1840s.

  • By the late 1800s, European and American growers had successfully cultivated different purple orchid species like Cattleya labiata and C. skinneri.
  • Traditional and Modern Uses

    Purple orchids have long been prized by indigenous Central American people for their vibrant flowers and traditional medicinal uses.

  • The Maya and Aztec civilizations used purple orchids like vanilla orchids (Vanilla planifolia) to flavor foods and beverages.
  • Certain South American tribes used purple orchid roots and leaves to treat ailments like fevers, chills, and respiratory illnesses.
  • Today, stunning cultivated hybrids like Vanda Mimi Palmer and Phalaenopsis I-Hsin Purple are hugely popular for their unique color and spiritual symbolism. Purple orchids often signify wisdom, respect, passion, creativity, royalty, and magic.

    Purple Orchid Meaning and Symbolism

    Significance in Ancient Myths and Legends

    The rich purple color of orchids has captivated people for centuries. In ancient Greek myths, orchids were associated with virility and fertility. Some legends state that orchid tubers resembled testicles, symbolizing prolific reproduction.

    The Aztecs believed that the fragrance of certain purple orchids could induce wanton lust when inhaled by virgins. These myths underscore the purple orchid’s ancient symbolic links to sexuality and procreation.

    Representation Across Different Faiths and Cultures

    The purple orchid’s rare beauty has earned it special significance across cultures. In Christianity, purple represents penance and sorrow. During Lent, deep purple orchids decorated churches as a sign of solemnity and sacrifice.

    In Buddhism, purple orchids represent spirituality and are believed to promote introversion useful for meditation. In Chinese culture, giving a purple orchid to someone signifies sending a heartfelt message of respect and admiration.

    The Victorian era connected purple orchids to luxury, refinement, and charm. Gifting these orchids conveyed majesty and indicated rarity, much as how purple dye was very expensive at the time. Their association with royalty continues today, as purple orchids are sometimes nicknamed “King” or “Queen” of the orchid family.

    Interpretation Through Color Psychology

    Color psychology says purple evokes imagination and creativity. It represents the ideal balance between passionate red and calming blue. Purple also signifies wisdom, dignity, independence, and magic. No wonder the wizard Merlin and imagination-filled Willy Wonka sport purple outfits!

    Purple’s blend of passion and stability explains why it is linked to purpose, vision, and spiritual realization across cultures. Combine that with an orchid’s grace, and the resulting purple orchid reflects mastery of creativity with inspired purpose and vision.

    Purple Orchids in Spiritual Practices

    Usage in Feng Shui

    In Feng Shui, the ancient Chinese practice of placement and arrangement of space to achieve harmony with the environment, purple orchids carry profound meaning. These graceful flowers are thought to open pathways to spiritual growth and self-development (Feng Shui Nexus).

    Purple orchids usher in fresh chi or energy and clear stagnant vibrations. Their presence filters the flow of energy to stimulate creativity, inspiration, and new beginnings. As Tim Chang writes in Total Feng Shui: “Purple orchids help Feng Shui by enhancing spirituality, imagination, creativity, wisdom, and thoughtfulness.”

    In Feng Shui guidelines, the purple orchid’s round and smooth petals symbolize perfection and can bring a sense of harmony. Their elegant stems reaching upward direct energy flow in an optimal way. Positioning purple orchids near the front door or in living areas ushers in positive energy.

    Role in Flower Remedies and Essences

    Purple orchids feature prominently in Bach flower essence remedies which use the healing properties of flowers to restore emotional balance. According to practitioner Phoenix Lea (The Bach Centre), purple orchid essence heals feelings of isolation and loneliness to rediscover inner joy.

    Lea writes: “The person in need of Purple Orchid tends to be shy or overly sensitive, leading to avoidance of society and relationships. This in turn causes low self-confidence and questions of self-worth.”

    The purple orchid essence works to “draw the person out of their isolation, allowing them to see the possibility of relationships and to gradually open themselves to both friendships and wider social spheres.”

    Other flower essence practitioners like Aeoliah Healing Arts recommend purple orchid essence to stimulate imagination, intuition, and creative expression. The signature vibrant purple color also signals a strong alignment with the higher chakras and the Crown chakra specifically to support spiritual awakening and connection.

    So in holistic healing modalities like Bach flower remedies and chakra crystal healing, purple orchids unlock access to creative inner realms and sacred spiritual truths waiting to unfold from within. Their distinctive hue carries the very vibration of the Divine.


    Purple orchids are mesmerizing flowers that have captured our imagination for ages. Their royal shade and delicate shape are visual delights as well as symbols of deeper meaning.

    Throughout history and across civilizations, purple orchids have represented spirituality, integrity, respect, luxury, and divinity. They signify the opening of crown chakra and protection from evil forces.

    If you wish to gift these orchids to a loved one, you can be sure to brighten up their day with a flower that stands for wisdom, admiration, creativity, and blessings from the divine realm.

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