search plant database and seed store
Plant Informational Database


Vanilla planifolia

A terrestrial or arboreal orchid producing long, skinny, blackish pods having thousands of small seeds and a highly aromatic interior. The pods are the vanilla bean of commerce.

Seed Availability

Seeds are not available for the Vanilla. Please visit our seed store to view current selections.


A vining orchid, with single shoots growing many feet long.


Not frost hardy.

Growing Environment

Vanilla is a tropical orchid needing a warm, humid climate. Grows well in shady locations. Culture is similar to that of many tropical orchids. If grown as a houseplant, provide support for the vine to attach, keep watered and misted. The vanilla vine retrieves water from its terrestrial and aerial roots, as well as its leaves.


Generally by cuttings which root easily.


Pods are fermented and processed. Vanillin is extracted from the pods and is used widely as a flavoring.

Native Range

Native to Central America.

Related Species

Vanilla planifolia