Paphiopedilum (Starr Warr x Maudiae) ‘Pisgah’ x Paph. Dark Spell ‘Wolf Lake”

A few years back while on vacation, a visit was made to Carter and Holmes Orchids in Newberry, South Carolina. There were seventeen greenhouses filled with orchids. It was overwhelming.

Shown above: mini cymbidium ”Tethys Black Magic’ and cymbidium ‘Valya Graig Sutherland’

Four plants were purchased, in bud, three paphiopedilums and one phalaenopsis. I was hooked.

Shown above, Miltonia ‘Bert Field Eileen’.

Many purchases and disappointments later, recovery has begun.

Shown above, Paphiopedilum Oriental Mystique ‘Sham’ x Alma Gaevert ‘Hageys’ and Paphiopedilum Raven ‘Forevermore’ x Curtsii ‘Imperial Purple’

No more new addtions to the collection allowed. Only the best performers and smaller plants were kept.

Shown above, a large Vanda, name unknown.

They summer outside on shelves with copper screen lining, to keep the slugs and snails out, or hanging in trees.

Shown above, Paph Raven, Ascondenda ‘Duang Tdrn’ and Cattleya Skinneri

Watered weekly when indoors, whenever I remember when out. Maybe a feeding in spring. That’s it. That is all the tending they are getting from me.

Shown above, Duang, Skinneri, and Cattleya Slc. Jewel Box ‘Scheherazade’

Beware the allure of the orchid family.

Shown above, a picture taken today, Cattleya Slc. (Pumpkin Festival ‘Fong Yuen’ x Naomi Kerps ‘Fireball’)

Once you get your first orchid to rebloom, look out. Also, keep away from sale racks.

Shown above, picture taken today, Brassia Mem. Fritz Boedeker ‘Newberry’ (Brassia longissima x Rex).

Orchids have a whole lot of breeding by humans going on, hence these names. Some of the orchids pictured above have gone to the great orchid house in the sky. Some were gifts. There are several more not pictured because they are not in bloom. No bloom and you’re out is the rule though, so they better get with it.


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5 Responses to Orchids

  1. brokenbeat says:

    your orchid talk is thick with pessimism, frances. though they seem to be a worthy test of the greenness of one’s thumb, surely the elegance of their blooms, however rare an occurance, is reason enough to entertain the battle. when shopping should we adolescent gardeners skulk away from these potential queens of the greenhouses, defeated before even taking a chance at victory? no, i won’t stand for it. gloved and armed with the most desirable soil i will fight the orchids. i will convince them with earthly appraisals mixed with tough love that it is their purpose to bloom and to rebloom and that they should be selfish in their desire to upstage in display all other plants. if i fail, so be it, but i will at least attempt to succeed.

  2. Frances says:

    brokenbeat…good luck with your battle but you will be at a disadvantage using soil for some orchids. some grow in bark, some on bark and some in the air. knowledge is power. they are beautiful, but they can break your heart.

  3. brokenbeat says:

    thank you. i go to battle prepared for the worst and hoping for the best.

  4. Pam/Digging says:

    I’ve never had an orchid, but between your posts and a recent one at Zanthan Gardens, I may have to give one a try someday. Very pretty indeed.

  5. Frances says:

    Pam..The flowers are indeed otherworldly and worthy of a try.

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