Two of the beauties on display at the Orchid Show
Cape Cod has a very active Orchid Society and I enjoyed their company last weekend at the Cape and Islands Orchid Society 24th Annual Orchid Show and Sale.
Growers, suppliers and orchid lovers all came together in the Cape Cod Resort and Conference Center on Scudder Avenue in Hyannis.
I am new to growing orchids but with a little success I am hooked. Orchids go a long time before blooming again but when they do, they show off for more than half the year.
Every winter my plants nearly shrivel up and die from the dry air and harsh light, just as I do. But then the warm weather comes and we all come alive again!
From Memorial Day until Labor Day my orchids all live outside in dappled shade. You should see them go. You would think I brought them all to Costa Rica, or that I gave them performance-enhancing drugs or something. The leaves become thick and glossy, roots appear like fuzzy green snakes and multiple thick stalks emerge from the base.
Just when it's time to bring them in again to keep them from harm in the new frosty nights of September, they begin their spectacular floral display. My two orchids that barely made it to summer last winter are still standing tall and proud with their happy-faced flowers.
I only went to the Orchid Show to window shop and see varieties of orchids not available in the stores, but I came away with two unusual items. One is a teeny little thing suitable for a doll house. The other is mounted with wire onto a bunch of twigs. Orchids are amazing in that way. They don't seem to need much to take hold but if they don't get the basics, watch out.
It was great to see growers from all over New England at the show, and they never seemed to tire of answering even the most basic questions put to them over two days.
I hope between now and Memorial Day I don't manage to kill off my little additions. They're awfully cute.
Would you like to see a place where they are preparing five- thousand varieties of orchids? The Orchid Extravaganza gets underway February 18th at Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvannia. Enjoy this behind the scenes tour of the greenhouse below.