In the world of orchids...

In the world of orchids...

‘Howard’s Dream,’ ‘Fire Phoenix,’ ‘Calanthe Rubens’... were gracefully lined up as if to greet onlookers for the Christmas season, at an exhibition of orchids by Alia Orchid Care, featuring hundreds of varieties known and unknown colourful orchids at Anegundi Road in Bejai, Mangalore on Thursday.

St Francis Xavier Church (Bejai) Parish Priest Rev Fr Victor Machado inaugurated the exhibition and blessed the occasion. He said that people have two families - one’s own family with parents, spouse and children and another one, the garden. “We should treat plants like our own family members for plants spread joy and happiness,” Fr Victor added.
Queenie Benedict Lasrado, the proprietor of Alia Orchid Care, spoke to Deccan Herald and said she has been growing orchids since 2008, with the support of her friends in The Orchid Society of Karnataka (TOSKAR).

Formosum, Coelogyne are some of the Dendrobium orchids which bloom round the year and are generally grown for commercial purposes. There are as many as 1,500 Dendrobium orchid varieties, she said.

Epiphytes Orchids Arenthera, Crumenatum, Epidendrum and  Rhyncostylis are aerial rooted orchids which thrive on trees.

Queenie said she collected orchid seeds from Western Ghats, Kodagu and Chikmagalur and grew them on the basis of experimentation at the initial level. S
he gradually succeeded in growing them professionally, after making suitable arrangements such as green house etc., with respect to the climatic conditions of Mangalore. She also said that the department of horticulture has been helping her.

She further said that the main reason for the gardeners not to choose orchid cultivation is that orchids are very delicate plants and most of them bloom seldom.

Also, it is a clumsy job to produce the seeds. However, seeds are developed by the scientists to make orchids more productive, for which there is an elaborate procedure starting from manual pollination to lab processing. Orchids need humid condition and shade. They do not grow in soil and hence grown in the potting mixture containing coconut husk pieces, coal pieces or pet moss, she added.

Spethoglottis, Paphiopedilum, Peristeria Elata and Ludicia, various types of Terrestrial orchids enthralled onlookers at the exhibition.

Orchid species such as Epiphytes, Dendrobiums, Oncidiums and Cymbidiums were also part of the expo. The rate of orchids ranges from Rs 200 to 450.

Bejai Church Assistant Parish Priest Rev Fr Sunil Pinto and St Anne’s Friary Superior Rev Fr Cyprian D’Souza were guests of honour.

The exhibition will continue till December 31 between 10 am and 7 pm.

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