This week’s Access Point photo may only have looked familiar if you’ve been looking very, very closely. Then again, it’s hard not to look closely at the orchids at the Atlanta Botanical Garden’s “Orchid Daze: Towers of Flowers” display.
In this case, Twitterer @dreweli was the first to suggest it was inside the Atlanta Botanical Garden, and commenter Laurie Dupree was the first to say it was an actual orchid at the Garden. Indeed, it’s a Laeliocattleya Spring Squall, and there are two of them among the 998 orchids in this year’s Orchid Daze display. (Some orchids in the display were grown in the garden, but this one came from Peach State Orchids.)
Becky Brinkman, the Botanical Garden’s Fuqua Orchid Center manager, said this particular flower is a hybrid of Laelia and Cattleya, and a “justifiably popular” variety. It’s big, beautiful, fragrant and good for horticulture buffs or home growers. It’s your classic corsage orchid, the kind you’d expect to see on a gal’s wrist if her date is really trying to impress her. (Or to impress her mom, perhaps.)
“If I were going to take this to my house today,” Brinkman explained, “I would put that in a west window or a south window, where I knew it would get a whole lot of light and warmth. They key is to take them to the beach — not literally, but put them in your brightest window with as much humidity as possible. Where they come from, it’s the tropics, so just have lots of plants. Give them lots of company.”
And it certainly has lots of company inside the exhibition. This is the Botanical Garden’s largest-ever Orchid Daze display, with nearly 1,000 plants. As AJCer Katie Leslie explained in a story about the show:
By showcasing the orchids in column and wall-like displays, “Orchid Daze” might seem to be sparser than in years past, but the garden crew used more plants in this year’s show than in previous years. Roughly 1,000 hybrid orchids were brought in for the exhibit, in addition to the 10,000 orchid specimens grown as part of the ABG’s permanent collection, organizers said.
The result is an exhibition of clean lines that echo the arching structure of the orchids themselves. Devoted garden fans might also notice this year’s show is all about the flowers, instead of how they are paired with art and sculpture.
Honestly, I felt like there were orchids bursting from every part of the building, some far above my head. Still, can you blame me for letting that Lc. Spring Squall catch my eye?
Want to go? “Orchid Daze: Towers of Flowers” continues through April 11. $15 for adults, $12 seniors and children 3-17, free to children younger than 3 and Atlanta Botanical Garden members. 1345 Piedmont Ave., N.E., Atlanta. 404-876-5859, atlantabotanicalgarden.org.
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