Brooklyn Orchids

LUSH at Brooklyn Botanic Garden

The folks at Brooklyn Botanic Garden were so super kind to comp me a ticket to their “LUSH” party this past Friday, February 10. I was thrilled to be able to go, especially considering I can’t really afford to drop $65 for a night out.  My boyfriend (who did purchase his ticket) and I had a great time!

I’d never been to an event at BBG before. This party was held in their event room, called the Palm House, and it’s really gorgeous when all lit up at night:

Palm House twinkling in the night

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Lush on February 10 at Brooklyn Botanic Garden

Dave Horak, BBG Orchid Curator with a lovely orchid. Photo by Elizabeth Peters

Attention all Brooklyn orchid lovers-slash-party people! On Friday, February 10, Brooklyn Botanic Garden is throwing what sounds like an incredibly fun bash called Lush. The party is being held in the BBG Palm House and will include the following:

  • Live music from boogaloo band Spanglish Fly (I actually have no idea what “boogaloo” style music is, but I imagine it’s festive)
  • Tunes spun by WFMU’s Mr. Fine Wine and DJ Turmix
  • Open bar with fragrant fruit juices and cocktails
  • Mexican fruit ice pops from La Newyorkina
  • Empanaditas from Purple Yam
  • Latin-inspired confections from Tumbador Chocolate
  • Mexican munchies from Chavela’s (I’ve eaten there and the food is delish!)
  • Tropical fruit bites from Peeled Snacks
  • Custom cut leaf silhouettes by artist Aaron Birk (this in particular sounds really cool and I’m curious to see the end result!)

But the most exciting part? I’ll let the event’s press release speak for itself:

“BBG curator Dave Horak will bring guests behind the scenes of BBG’s orchid collection, introducing some of the world’s most remarkable tropical specimens in BBG’s care. Guests will also have a special chance to see the orchid nursery, usually unavailable for public viewing, and learn about the critical conservation of tropical orchids.”

Dave Horak, BBG Orchid Curator. Photo by Elizabeth Peters

The events runs from 8pm to midnight and tickets are $65 a pop. I’m going to try to swing it, though being mostly unemployed makes it a hard for me to spend $65 for an evening out. The party does sound like it will be well worth it, though. Anyone out there planning to go?

Correction: I originally stated that tickets are $75, but they are in fact $65 apiece.

My Mystery Dendrobium Has Bloomed!!

Sorry that I’ve been MIA for awhile—I have just been lame and not doing my Orchid of the Week posts, and then for the past week and a half I’ve been sick. I’m still sick—might have pneumonia, actually—but something exciting happened yesterday that I have to share. My mystery dendrobium that I bought early this year at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden shop has finally bloomed! It’s a pretty, small white bloom:

Mystery Dendrobium Bloom!

It may be a little hard to see, but there is a very faint pink tinge way back in the throat of the bloom:

Pink-tinged throat

As you can see, a second bud is developing so this bloom will soon have a buddy. At this point, it only looks like the spike is putting out two blooms. Hopefully it will produce some more in the future!

Second bud is growing

I am so proud that I’ve kept this orchid healthy enough to bloom for me! The other orchid that I bought at the same time, an odontoglossum, bit the dust awhile back.

OK, back to resting and drinking lots and lots of water. Once I’ve fully recovered I am going to get back on the orchid blogging horse and will work on updating more regularly!

Mystery Dendrobium in Spike

Wow, so I totally skipped doing an Orchid of the Week post last Friday, for no good reason. I guess I just wasn’t really in the mood. But something that has gotten me in the mood to post is that my mystery Dendrobium is in spike! Check out the nubbin I noticed within some of its leaves a couple weeks ago:

The beginnings of a spike

I bought this guy on sale for $12 at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden shop, along with an Odontoglossom Geyser Gold that has since died. This Dendrobium, which wasn’t in bloom when I bought it, has been flourishing and putting out new growths every so often. And now, it looks like it’s gearing up to finally bloom for me! The nubbin has turned into a spike for sure:

Bloom for me, baby!

Getting this orchid to bloom is particularly exciting for me, because it had no tag when I bought it and I have absolutely no idea what its flowers are going to look like. For all I know it’s not even a Dendrobium (though its foliage and canes suggest that it is).

So I will wait patiently for the mystery blooms to open up. Whatever they end up looking like, they will be a nice surprise. Stay tuned!

Orchid of the Week: Grammatophyllum speciosum

Last week’s featured orchid is one of the smaller orchid plants found around the world. This week I’ve chosen what is thought to be the biggest type of orchid in the world: Grammatophyllum speciosum. This one has a number of nicknames, including Giant Orchid, Tiger Orchid, Sugar Cane Orchid, and Queen of the Orchids. The Brooklyn Botanic Garden has a Grammatophyllum speciosum in their orchid collection, and it is no joke. Seriously, this plant is MONSTROUS:

Tiger Orchid at the BBG

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To Do This Weekend: Sakura Matsuri at BBG

Photo credit: kilgub on Flickr

Brooklyn Botanic Garden‘s Sakura Matsuri (aka Cherry Blossom Festival) is this weekend and you can bet that I’ll be there! The weather is supposed to be gorgeous all weekend, which gets me even more excited because it’s been wet, cold, and windy all week.

I went to the festival for the first time last year and loved it. Already this year the cherry blossom trees are past their peak bloom, but I’m sure it will still be a beautiful visit.

The festival is Saturday, May 1 from 10:00am to 6:00pm and Sunday, May 2 from 10:00am to 7:00pm. Tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for seniors and students. BBG members and children under 12 get in free.

One thing to note is that the 2/3 trains aren’t in service this weekend, but you can still get to the garden by taking the 4/5 train to the Eastern Parkway-Brooklyn Museum stop. Gotta love the MTA…especially on weekends.

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