Guest Author - Susan Taylor
An orchid show is the place to start if you are interested in orchids. You will see beautiful displays of orchids that will give you an idea of what some of the orchids look like; there will be vendors selling all types of orchids; and the local society will have veteran growers who will give advice and often seminars on growing.
Take some time when you first arrive to find out when seminars will be presented so that you can attend those that are of interest to you. The information table should have growing information and lists of vendors and exhibits to give you an idea of what is available. Look around to see the whole show before starting to purchase plants – that way you will know what is available and what prices the vendors are charging. As you go, make a list of the vendor and the plants that are your favorites so you can find them again.
If possible try to attend the show on a Thursday or Friday since you will be able to enjoy it with fewer people around and can spend more time asking questions of vendors and growers. Local society members are the best source of information since they will be able to tell you what will grow in your area and what will be problematic or need special attention in order to thrive.
Vendors are also a great source of information and they are usually very informative with their advice since they have an interest in making you a good grower so you will buy more plants from them in the future. Also most vendors will keep your plants for you until you are ready to leave; take advantage of this. Many people have lost those orchid flowers carrying the plants around when they could have been safe at the vendor’s booth. It is also much easier on your arms and back!
Go to the show and enjoy!