Happy Early Holidays to Me: Venezuelan Orchids Illustrated

Venezuelan Orchids Illustrated, Vol. 1-6
Venezuelan Orchids Illustrated, Vol. 1-6

I’ve mentioned before how wonderful my husband is, and I have yet another example of his awesomeness to share with you. As an early holiday gift, he got me the complete, out-of-print six-volume set of Venezuelan Orchids Illustrated by G.C.K. Dunsterville and Leslie A. Garay!

A little back story on how my husband heard about these books: he recently read my copy of Orchid Fever: A Horticultural Tale of Love, Lust, and Lunacy by Eric Hansen, which is a GREAT book that I simply cannot recommend enough for any orchid nerd (and it’s on my To Re-Read List, because I first read it years ago). Chapter four talks about Galfrid Clement Keyworth Dunsterville (what a name!), a British engineer and his wife Nora, who traveled throughout Venezuela from the 1950s to the 1970s on what sounds like an epic orchid collecting adventure. Their expeditions prompted the husband-and-wife team to write literally thousands of pages describing the orchids they encountered along the way, complete with detailed illustrations of each. These six volumes, which include introductions in both English and Spanish, cover 1,000 Venezuelan orchid species, and they are beautiful—so of course I took photos:

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Orchid Books on eBay

Awhile back I developed a little obsession with hunting eBay for good deals on orchid books. I was able to find great deals on some helpful books to add to my small collection! Here’s what I ended up with:

300 Orchids: Species, Hybrids & Varities in Cultivation by Jane Boosey

This fat little orchid bible retails for $29.95 but my winning bid was $3.99. Total including shipping was $7.13. So I saved $22.82 on this one!

Growing Orchids: A Cultural Handbook Prepared by the AOS, 1993 Revised Edition

My winning bid was $0.99, and total cost including shipping was $3.49.

Orchids by Thomas J. Sheehan

My winning bid was another whopping $0.99! Total cost including shipping: $4.15. I can’t even find this book online, so I think it may be out of print (though the publication date is 2001, so it’s not all that old). It was published in association with the Smithsonian Institution and the American Orchid Society.

11 of 12 volumes of Orchids Magazine from 1996, American Orchid Society

My winning bid was $4.99; total cost including shipping: $10.71.

All in all, I spent $25.48 on three orchid books and 11 magazines. If you divide the cost, that’s $1.82 per publication! Not too shabby, eh? I love justifying purchases that way. There’s a ton of information in these books and magazines and I’ve been using them to do research for my blog posts and to care for my orchids. These purchases were definitely worth it!

An Orchid Book Collection Grows in Brooklyn

Yesterday I went to a book sale at the Park Slope United Methodist Church and picked up eight books for $9 (!!!). One of my favorite finds was The Best Orchids for Indoors, part of the Brooklyn Botanic Garden All-Region Guides series. Retail price for this book is $9.95—though it’s currently on sale for $8.95 here – but I got it for $1.50. That’s right—one dollar and fifty cents worth of orchid-y goodness!

The Best Orchids for Indoors book

This BBG guide is my third book about orchids. The first one that I purchased is Reader’s Digest Orchids for Every Home by Wilma and Brian Rittershausen. I found it at a craphole bookstore at an outlet mall north of Austin, TX while I was visiting family, and if memory serves me correctly it cost me somewhere between $7-9. Price listed on the inside cover is $27.95, so I got a pretty great deal.  🙂

Reader's Digest Orchids for Every Home

The second orchid book added to my collection was a holiday gift from my boyfriends’ parents: Bloom-Again Orchids by Judy White. I especially like the way this book presents information on how to care for orchids – very useful for a newbie like me.

Bloom-Again Orchids by judywhite

I’ve always been a book lover so it makes sense that I’m now starting to pick up some orchid books. I guess it’s all part of the orchid addiction!