Exotic Gardening with Rare and Strange Plants


Another beautiful spring day, time is certainly ripping along. Today a friend and I went out to visit the Victoria Orchid Society’s Spring Show & Sale. As you walk around the corner in the Student Union building at UVIC you’re greeted by a dazzling display of orchids in all shapes and sizes. The entrance fee was $7.00 and I saw more orchids in flower then I knew existed. Hobbyists from all over brought in their finest specimens, it real was a sight to be seen. While I’m by no means an orchid expert and/or enthusiast, I can appreciate the botanical madness that goes into cultivating these exotic plants. The flowers ranged from very large to miniature and the colors and shapes were surreal. After taking some photos and wondering around for a bit I was thoroughly impressed. Not only was there an incredible variety, the quality of the specimens was outstanding. There were so many old growth pleione, phalaenopsis and cattleya orchids, what a wealth of botanical treasure. It seems orchid people are also predisposed to plant hoarding.  After viewing the display tables, I tip toed through the plant sale area and escaped the event with only two take homes (Whew discretion!). While I hoard just about every type of plant I remain cautious when it comes to orchids. With such a variety of strange and unusual plants I’m scared to go down that road. I think I will wait until I’m a wee bit more setup in life. Alas I took more photos then I knew what to do with, so here I am sharing them with you.

Victoria Orchid Society March 03 2012.  

Even the foliage was interesting.

I ended up coming home with this paphiopedilum lynleigh koopowitz

and this Masdevallia gold dust.

Another beautiful day in Victoria.

The event is still open for one more day so if you get the chance to visit, go check out some orchids.

As the cold wind blows down into the cook street village I’m reminded of tropical destinations.

A breif montage of some epiphytes.

Epiphyte: A plant that grows on another, using it as a physical support but not obtaining nutrients from it.

A rather simple post: Photos for your enjoyment.

Orchids growing out of a tree in Mexico

More orchids mounted on a tree

Strange cactus that was growing into a stump of a tree, climbing cacti.

Not a epiphyte: A close up view of a mimosa tree, just for smiles, amazing!

As my green thumb career became a bigger part of my life, so did my urge to escape to a warmer climates in the winter. There is nothing quite like leaving at the start of winter for a 31 degree poolside bar. During these trips I often find myself in pure awe of the flora found in these places. Although Victoria offers one of the best gardening climates in canada a little part of me is jealous of the gardeners to the south. Palms, and cactus’s that I barely manage to keep alive, thrive and almost take over in the south.

about 10 times as big as they get in your home in canadaHuge Croton Bush

Pathos vines are used as ground covers and grow enormous as epiphytic monsters. Orchids are planted in trees, not plastic pots from walmart. Palm and monstaras fruit and do things they’d never do in a cheery canadian living room. As a small time tropical plant enthusiast that lives in canada, sometimes you forget these plants came from much warmer places then they reside today. The everyday consumer would think, ” what do you mean, that’s a HOUSE PLANT, duh”. Treat yourself right to a welcome reminder of where these plants are really meant to live.

Quote of the day from my trip to mexico.

“Oh your from canada, brrr it must be cold up there, it never gets below freezing here… ”

Sigh, lucky Mexicans.

Beautiful Leaves of a Croton

Fields of Cordylines

Huge Agaves

Oh and I might have accidently brought home some palm tree seeds on my trip home, which might have accidently been planted, today.

Mr Nat. Gardener, Plant Nerd
Tips and tales about gardening in one of the most mild climates in Canada. Specializing in rare and strange plants from far out destinations, this is the story of an obsessed young gardener in Victoria B.C. Let's create more tropical gardens in the garden city on the southern tip of Vancouver Island.
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