Last week our garden club went on a field trip to one of the largest orchid growers in Florida. Central Florida is the home of many types of flowers, ferns, etc. Largest growers in the country.
We went to Kerry's Bromeliads & Orchids. We spent almost 2 hours there and were given one of the best tours I have ever been on. We started with the small beginning plants all the way up to the final finished orchids ready to be shipped all over the country. It is an amazing site to see a greenhouse as large as a football field just filled with plants.
I fell in love with orchids when we started spending the winters in Florida. I used to go to the flea market and buy a bouquet of flowers every Sun. for $5.00 and they would last until maybe Fri. or if lucky Sat. then in the garbage. Well I discovered one day that an orchid once it starts to bloom can literally last for months. I bought a beautiful multi stem one with small pink flowers on it in mid Nov. and it is just about finished now. Daily I find the little dried up flowers stil hanging on to the stems. I believe I paid 5.00 for this one at one of the flea markets. I have them all over the house and out on the sun room. Many were only 3.00 or maybe 3 for 10.00.
I took a couple of pics of some of mine but did not have my camera with me that day. Another good part of the tour was they let us buy orchids and bromeliads from them that day at a very reasonable price. I don't think anyone went home empty handed.
I like to put the orchid in a larger bowl and fill in with the small bromeliads or other small plants - ferns, ivys, etc. Sometimes I will just fill around it with green moss. Looks pretty. I see from my bottom pic that I need to put some moss around this little one. I also like to buy them with only 1 or 2 flowers open as they will gradually open and give you that much more life. If giving as a gift I always buy one in almost full bloom because they look prettier.
It is very possible that the orchids that you now see in your grocery store or home store have come right from Kerry's. They deliver to all the big chains all around the country and Canada.