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Thread: Orchid Fever

  1. #1
    Doing it wrong until I do it right. xvart's Avatar
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    Orchid Fever

    Has anyone read the book Orchid Fever: A Horticultural Tale of Love, Lust, and Lunacy? I picked it up at the library and it is truly a good book. I am not an orchid grower, but I appreciate the vastness of the species, the beauty of the flowers, and the care necessary in growing these plants. That being said, this book is truly fascinating. The author, Eric Hansen, conducted research and interviews over seven years to put this account of the orchid world into text. So far I have read a lot about supposed "orchid pirates," CITES, and all sorts of crazy stories about growers and sellers and their experiences in the orchid world.

    Sometimes it's hard to remember that this is a factual tale, with all the crazed characters and their bizarre stories. So far the author has traveled to various exotic locales and traversed rugged terrain to locate the legendary Paphiopedilum sanderianum. Some of the descriptions leave me so mystified and awestruck. I can only imagine actually experience some of these events.

    I'm really looking forward to reading more about the dirty underbelly of the orchid world. I think the characters are really what make this book. Anyways, I would love to hear other thoughts on this book if anyone else has read it. Otherwise, you have my personal recommendation to pick this book up if you are an orchid fanatic or a casual grower.

    This book makes me want to devote my life to the orchid world and be one of these crazed orchid lunatics!

    xvart.
    "The tragedy of life is not that every man loses; but that he almost wins."

    "Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?"

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    herenorthere's Avatar
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    I never read it but remember orchid forums being all abuzz about it. At least I think that was the book. I didn't follow the discussions, but some people said the author stretched the truth so far that it was a surprise it didn't snap.
    Bruce in CT

    Madness is something rare in individuals but in groups, parties, peoples, ages it is the rule. Friedrich Nietzsche

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    Doing it wrong until I do it right. xvart's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by herenorthere View Post
    I didn't follow the discussions, but some people said the author stretched the truth so far that it was a surprise it didn't snap.
    Maybe they just didn't want it to be true, lol. There's a little truth behind every joke, you know; and in this case I can see how the stories might be entirely accurate. I'm not involved in the orchid world at all, but from what I do know the stuff the author describes seems entirely plausible. Some of the characters are real shifty and there are parts that he describes that seem a little far fetched; like when an unknown caller says the "orchid police" are after some of the information he had collected. "how can I find these people," Hansen asks; and the caller says "don't worry, they will find you."

    xvart.
    "The tragedy of life is not that every man loses; but that he almost wins."

    "Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?"

  4. #4
    Stay chooned in for more! Clint's Avatar
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    Lmao omg that's funny. Yeah maybe the USDA but not some orchid men in black (or would it be pink with frilly pirate collars? lmao!)

    CITES is a joke and doesn't do squat except increase black market trade. Besides there is a huge grandfather clause that exempts plants in the US before CITES was implemented and there's no way to prove weather certain plants are progeny of originals or new ones.
    I want a Paph. sanderianum

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    Doing it wrong until I do it right. xvart's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JustLikeAPill View Post
    CITES is a joke and doesn't do squat except increase black market trade. Besides there is a huge grandfather clause that exempts plants in the US before CITES was implemented and there's no way to prove weather certain plants are progeny of originals or new ones.
    That's exactly what is discussed in the book. The beauracracy and how some people get totally screwed oversees and how foreign governments tear down all these orchids to build stuff but noboy can collect them to help propogate and keep them alive.

    Quote Originally Posted by JustLikeAPill View Post
    I want a Paph. sanderianum
    lol. Don't we all!

    xvart.
    "The tragedy of life is not that every man loses; but that he almost wins."

    "Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?"

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    herenorthere's Avatar
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    They aren't that scarce and you can probably order a small one for what Home Depot charges for two anonymous Phals.
    Bruce in CT

    Madness is something rare in individuals but in groups, parties, peoples, ages it is the rule. Friedrich Nietzsche

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