Winning Isn't Everything

The Treasure Valley Orchid Society's 37th annual show and sale just wrapped up, and I'm especially proud of my first-prize Cymbidium this year.

I got it from a fellow TVOS member a few years ago, when she asked for volunteers to help her repot some plants that her father had grown in the 1940s and 50s in Southern California.

They were giant, unwieldy plants that, in some cases, were difficult to lift, let alone repot!

In exchange for our labor, she let us take home a couple of the newly repotted orchids.

Neither of the ones I selected had bloomed until this year – and wow, they are stunning. They took 1st and 2nd place in the Cymbidium category, despite the fact that their specific parentage is unknown.

What I've enjoyed most about TVOS membership is the camaraderie that brings folks out to help with repotting or cleaning bug-infested plants – the big, messy tasks that sometimes overtake even the best growers.

So it was disappointing that this year, many club members dropped off their orchids for the competition...and left.

In a club of at least 50 members, about 10 of us ended up setting up and running the show, Friday evening through Sunday. We were so busy that hardly anyone got a meal or restroom break.

I'm sure some people had legitimate reasons for not pitching in. But this is our biggest fundraiser of the year, and I hope next year's volunteer turnout is as enthusiastic as the public response to our lovely event.