Wide va­ri­ety of or­chids on dis­play

The Tribune (NZ) - - NEWS - RICHARD MAYS

Or­chids are an ex­quis­ite pas­sion. This week­end, that pas­sion will be on dis­play dur­ing the Manawatu Orchid So­ci­ety’s an­nual two-day show in the the Fer­gu­son St Com­mu­nity Leisure Cen­tre.

Open 10am – 4pm both days, this is the so­ci­ety’s 42nd how and Brian prom­ises that mem­bers of the public won’t be dis­ap­pointed with the qual­ity of the blooms.

‘‘There will be a lot of or­chids peo­ple prob­a­bly won’t have seen be­fore. When it comes to or­chids many peo­ple will think ‘cym­bid­i­ums’, but there are plenty of other va­ri­eties.’’

On a quick tour of the re­cently ren­o­vated Peter Black Con­ser­va­tory in the Es­planade, Brian points out sev­eral species grow­ing among the lux­u­ri­ant fo­liage of the re­cently re­fur­bished con­ser­va­tory, in­clud­ing a vanilla plant.

It’s a mem­ber of flow­er­ing fam­ily that has more than 20,000 recog­nised species, while the num­bers of hy­brids are be­yond 100,000, so there is plenty to learn and know.

A long serv­ing city coun­cil nurs­ery­man, Brian fell in love with the flower 25 years ago.

‘‘I joined the orchid so­ci­ety to learn more about them. There are mem­bers who have so much ex­pe­ri­ence and knowl­edge about them.’’

Some of that ex­per­tise will be made avail­able at the week­end’s show, with free en­try and visi­tors able to ad­mire and learn from some of the best, as well as buy plants, orchid bark and grow­ing sup­plies. ‘‘It at­tracts grow­ers and trade stalls from all over. The Leisure Cen­tre is such a won­der­ful venue. As well as lo­cal grow­ers, they are com­ing here from Levin, Wairarapa, Hawkes Bay and Welling­ton.’’

There will be food and re­fresh­ment avail­able, while Brian has no­ticed an in­crease in ap­pre­ci­a­tion for the show over the years.

‘‘It’s get­ting quite pop­u­lar. There are of­ten peo­ple wait­ing at the door to get in be­fore we open in the morn­ing.’’

PHOTO: DAVID UNWIN/FAIR­FAX NZ

The Manawatu Orchid So­ci­ety’s Brian Adam with a cym­bid­ium hy­brid at the Peter Black con­ser­va­tory in the Es­planade.

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