Vanilla

As many of us know, vanilla is the highly prized seed pod of the orchid vanilla plant. I simply love the aroma of this plant and its derivative - vanilla. My question: for a retiree, is there any place in the USA that vanilla grows naturally - or can be induced to grow naturally.
What a combination! The fragrant aroma of vanilla and the pleasure of these orchids vining over my home! Anyone who has found this garden of paradise, please speak up!!
Jim
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Madagascar and Mexico are two places it is cultivated for production. I believe www.logees.com sells the orchid.
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South Florida has several native species of vanilla (e.g. V. barbellata), and I suspect that the commercial vanilla, V. planifolia, could be naturalized there. It should also grow well in Hawaii. If your definition of "USA" is sufficiently broad, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands probably have right climate, too.
Nick
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They have it!
http://naturalselections.safeshopper.com /

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g'day jim,
it grows easily over here in the sub-tropics on the east coast of northern australia. but growing the orchid and enjoying the aroma of the vanilla pods in your kitchen is a long way in between.
the plant itself is nothing spectacular, the flowers are nothing spectacular and have no discernable aroma, generaly being a greenish colour that almost matches the vine.
you will need to learn how to hand pollinate the blooms, this includes doing it in the correct time frame on the day, so far and i'm only talking of me i haven't successfully hand pollinated. but then i'm only doing hit and miss affair.
if you do get successfull pollination then there is still a long way to go to get that vanilla you speak of, the bean takes about 12 months to mature then there is a somewhat drawn out process to turn it into useable end product.
i like the pant because it is unusual and not that easily come by over here.
so go buy some and have fun, if you can try to learn what you can about hand pollinating.
len
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happy gardening
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Jim Schott wrote:

As you also probably know, vanilla is a tropical plant. You might be able to get it to grow in the far south of Florida; but, that would be about it. Why not just grow one IN the house?
Chris Owens
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