HOW VANILLA BECAME THE WORLD’S FAVORITE FLAVOR
Like all fruits, vanilla begins with a flower: A single flower that opens up on only one day every year, and if you fail to pollinate it, that’s it. No vanilla bean.
The flat-leaved vanilla orchid (Vanilla planifolia) is a vine-like tropical plant with dark, leathery leaves that produces ornate, pale green flowers
Up until the mid-19th century, vanilla orchids were pollinated exclusively by a particular genus of bee in Mexico, called Melipona.
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