2017 Year In Review

We had our ups and downs in 2017, but overall, it was a very good year. We hope yours was, as well!

Our orchids continue to receive awards and accolades, for which we are truly honored. These awards included 26 flower quality awards from the American Orchid Society. Among those awards were two FCC/AOS, the American Orchid Society’s highest recognition for flower quality, and our twenty-second AQ/AOS, the Award of Quality recognizing the superior quality of a hybrid population of plants. In fact, the two FCC/AOS awards were granted to plants of V. Will Riley, the recipient of the Award of Quality. These awards were granted at the Pan American Orchid Society Show, hosted here in our gardens. We hope this show will be an annual spring event here, just as the East Everglades Orchid Society holds its annual show here in the fall.

We were also honored to receive the AOS’s Annual Fuchs Family Award, which recognizes the “most outstanding example of the genus Vanda as currently circumscribed, species or hybrid, awarded during the previous calendar year”, for Vanda Fuchs Blue ‘Redland Sky’ FCC/AOS. This stunning Vanda was awarded in 2016 but the annual awards for that calendar year were only recently announced in 2017.

Our customers continue to receive awards on orchids purchased from us, too. We know of at least 2 of these, and there are probably more we haven’t heard about, but we’re always thrilled to learn about them. So if you get awards on the orchids you purchase from us, please let us know! Send us the details, and a photo we can use on the website, and we’ll announce your awards, too! And we always credit the photographers. From 2017, congratulations to Jim Longwell, and to Mike and Angie Pitiriciu on their AOS awards!

We also registered 28 terrific new hybrids in 6 genera, adding to our offerings of superior orchids.

Again, Bob chaired the AOS judging of the annual national orchid show in Guatemala in February, and in March, Mike chaired the AOS judging at the Barbados Orchid Society Show. Bob was AOS judging chair of the annual orchid show in Medellín, Colómbia in August.

In the spring, we were honored to host a beautiful party during the AOS’s spring meetings. This took place in our brand new event space, a 2400 sq. ft. pavilion out in the front garden. It was a gorgeous evening (and the event space is available for rent, contact us).

Of course we had to deal with hurricane Irma in September. Fortunately, we prepared the plants and greenhouses in advance of the storm, and thankfully suffered only minor damage to the nursery. The landscape took a major hit (we had to suspend garden tours for a couple of months), and we lost telephone and internet service for about a week, but other than that, we came through the storm in pretty good shape.

Our menagerie increased this past year, too. We love our critters, and our furry and feathery friends now include Quinn, a gorgeous harlequin macaw, and two super-cute tabby kitties, Mambo and Samba. They’re standing by in the showroom, ready for tummy-skritches. Loretta, a very sweet mixed-breed dog, showed up one day and Mike took a shine to her. She’s keeping the Rotties (Xena and Athena) company in the kennel.

In November, Bob escorted a tour group to Ecuador and Peru for the 22nd World Orchid Conference. The conference and show were in Guayaquil, Ecuador, and from there, the group headed to Peru where they visited Lima, Cusco and Machu Picchu. If you’re not already on our tour information mailing list, send us your postal mailing address and we’ll let you know when a new tour is on deck. We’re going to Kenya in October, 2018, for the Kenya Orchid Society Show and a photo safari afterwards. The tour itinerary is here on the site.

In December of each year, the global fine art community gathers in Miami for Art Basel. This year we were honored to work with famed landscape designer Lily Kwong to install 500 orchids on a tree for an Art Basel installation.

From all of us here at R.F. Orchids, we wish you a healthy and prosperous new year. We hope 2018 is great for everyone!


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