The Philippines is home to several splendid flowers and orchids, but today many consider the Waling Waling as very best. Since its discovery in 1882 the orchid has become ever more popular, particularly in Davao.
The scientific name of the Waling Waling is Vanda Sanderiana Reichen-bach, and was first uncovered by Heinrich Gustav Reicheinback, a German taxonomist, and was named after botanist Henry Sanders.
Although found in various parts of the Philippines, the Waling Waling is particularly prevalent in Mindanao. The best place to see the orchid is in the forest trees in Davao, and Surigao. In Davao, the orchid can be mostly seen on the trees near the storied Mount Apo.
The local Bagobo tribe in Davao hold the Waling Waling in high esteem; they regard it as a tree goddess. It has become the subject of numerous myths and legends, hence it became known as the Queen of Philippine Flowers.
The Waling Waling is in full bloom from the months of July up to December. Almost 5 inches in diameter, the flower comes in various colors, including pink and brown. Others come in yellow and various shades of green.
From the moment it was discovered in 1882, the Waling Waling had faced the threat of extinction, mostly due to the destruction of its natural habitat by human beings. This continued for several years. However, the advent of orchid farms and tissue culture in the mid 1980s, have led to mass reproduction of the species.
Today, with the advent of various technologies like embryo culture, it has become possible for businessmen and laymen to produce and cross breed various types of Waling Waling.
Aside from the technological innvoati0ons, it was the inclusion of the floral parade in the Kadayawan Festival in 1995 held in Davao that brought the Waling Waling to the mainstream of public consciousness. Flower lovers, both local and foreign, were taken in by the orchid. The Waling Waling industry took off.