There are many garden shows held throughout the year; last of which for 2004 is the continuing Los Baños Orchid Society (LBOS) exhibit, themed “Garden Weddings.” It comes to a close tomorrow at the Seniors Social Garden of University of the Philippines in Los Baños, Laguna.
Curiously, despite many categories in contention, only seven individual growers won the coveted awards.
The most prolific awardee was Vic’s Orchids and Ornamentals proprietor Vicente Chin Jr. Both his exhibit booth and plants gained meritorious accolades. The former, designed and executed by Rap Eugenio, won Best Booth Construction and placed second for Best Booth Composition. And for the individual plants, he garnered Best Philippine Species (Renanthera philippinensis); Best White Flowering Plant (Mandevilla suaveolens); and Best Aroid (Aglaonema Illumination).
At the individual plant exhibit competition, the most awarded entry was Teresa Saniano’s Earthkeeper’s Garden. It garnered multiple plaudits for: Birds Nest Fern or “Pakpak Lawin” (Asplenium nidus) as Best Plant in Show and Best Fern, while another mutation won Best Philippine Indigenous Ornamental Plant (Asplenium nidus ‘Kulot’); Best Cycad (Encephalartos trispinosus); and Best Variegated Plant for Jatropha sp.
Mable Chua’s The Flower Box won for Best Booth Composition, and 2nd Best Booth Construction. The exhibit was conceptualized and mounted by Carlos Valeriano Lazaro. The Flower Box also won a plant award for Best Other Genera [Rhyrds. Memoria Suranaree (Rhynchostylis coelestis x Aerides lawrenciae)].
Malvarosa Orchids’ proprietor Hernando Perez also won awards for his orchids: Best Vanda Orchid (Vanda Pat Delight ‘Preecha’); Best Cattleya Orchid [Blc. Gladys Oumae ‘Waianae’ x (Blc. Golden Slippers x Blc. Waikiki Sunset)]; and Best Collection of a Kind (cattleya collection).
Best Bromeliad (Neoregelia Bronze Beauty) was by Genesis Flowers; and Best Cultured Plant (Bougainvillea ‘variegated Hawaiian’) was by Linda Lim’s Genesis Flowers; Other winners include: Best Palm (Drymophloeus oliviformis) by Dempo Maligalig; and Flowering Plant Special Award went to Ricky Espino’s Globba winitii “Thai Beauty.”
Apart from the distinctive category/division citation, the plum award in any plant competition maximizes prize entitlement, prestige indexation to the winning entry, and supreme honor to the exhibitor or grower. To differentiate the various awards given, the Best in Show is a “plant award,” an excellence of pedigree, which recognizes the ultimate meritorial suitability of the plant. Whereas, the Best-Cultured Plant is a “grower’s award” that affirms the plant grower’s outstanding evidentiary passion. The Best Exhibit award is a commendation for comprehensive design, detail, presentation, innovation, harmony, and relevance.
For the entrepreneurs, garden shows offer fertile ground for potential commercial deals with minimum logistical outlay as industry practitioners are on the common hunt for bargains, or bent to launch the “next-big-thing.” More often than not, commercial bazaars are inextricable components of garden shows whereby propagation of specimen plants on view at exhibits are sold and prize-winning plants are understandably sold at a premium.
To the delight of plain curiousites and prospective visitors, the competition becomes a common venue for all-too-valuable conversational exchange between neophytes and arbitrary experts; a mecca for display of the latest hybrids, new varieties and a chance altogether to view these prize collections of proud and dedicated plant connoisseurs.
By Jose Mari M. Lacandula