From: "Albert Huntington" amh at ieee.org> on 2003.09.26 at 17:47:38(10633)|
Well - I made it back from the show and have had a couple of
days to recover. For those of you who did not go this year (
SHAME on you ), here's a report:
- Saturday, 9:30AM - Sales tables are full of plants. We've got a
lot of really rare and unusual plants hidden in there. A few very
nice Amorphophallus, some very interesting Anthuriums. Plants are
piled under the tables and on the floor in front of the tables.
Plants are forming committees complaining of overcrowding.
- Saturday, 11:30AM - Sales tables are looking ... sparse ... The
crowd is slowly dissipating. There is now space and time to look
at the amazing show plants this year, and to tour the gardens.
- Saturday, 1:00PM - Wilbert Hetterscheid gives his talk on
Arisaema, and the difficulties involved with the taxonomy thereof.
We find out that A) The good people of South Florida are willing
to sit and listen to a presentation on beautiful plants they have
little hope of growing well ( which makes those of us from the
frozen north feel better. ) B) Our friend the fabulous Lord P.
actually cares for more than just his Genus.
- Saturday, 1:30PM - Monica Carlsen, recipient of this year's
Monroe Birdsey Award, explains some of her research to us. She
has very interesting information on ant gardens, construction
equipment, and more than you ever wanted to know about DNA
sequencing of Anthuriums. She also has some fascinating theories
about species diversity and where the best places to collect might be.
- Saturday, 2:30PM - Dr. Tom Croat gives us a travelogue of his
recent trip to Ecuador. Amazingly, no important appendages were
hacked or sawn off during this particular expedition. There were,
however, many marvelous slides of aroids in habitat, especially
anthuriums and philodendrons.
- Saturday, 6:30PM - Appetizers and Dinner - the usual excellent
Cuban fare was served. I volunteered as a server. I got to serve
Malanga, which is the root of Xanthosoma. It's really quite a
good dish, especially with grilled onions on top. Convincing
aroiders to eat the plants that they love turned out to be not so
easy. Top comments : "Is that Yucca?" "I don't eat the plants I
grow." "That's Yucca, right?" and "Can I have more Onions?"
Dr. Frank Brown announced during the dinner that Charlie
McDaniel had been voted "Best Dressed" member, seeing as how he
was wearing an actual suit.
- Saturday, too late for kids - Wilbert's not-pg-rated talk on
Amorphophallus begins - it's all there - the history, the
expeditions into the Sumatran jungle, the annoying BBC camera
crews, the amazing Jim Symon. Some pictures surely worth
thousands for their blackmail potential alone. Those of us still
able to sit up straight and speak coherently remained for...
The Auction - Julius Boos in his perennial position as Auctioneer
dispatched the plants in style, with plentiful assistance from Dr.
Tom "Spiritus Sanctus" Croat. Notable plants included a
magnificent Anthurium eminens from Murline Lydon, a huge specimen
of Anthurium tinekeae donated by Fairchild, and the famed and rare
Philodendron leopoldiana "Spiritus Sanctus". Lester Kallus claims
to have a video clip.
- Sunday - way too early - The Aroid-L Breakfast. In attendance,
and remarkably awake, were such personalities as Dr. Tom Croat,
Ms. Monica Carlsen ( amazingly, she was willing to continue to
associate with us ), Lynn Hannon, Murline Lydon, and Julius Boos.
Talk on Julius' end of the table seemed centered on various large
and poisonous invertebrates, and the bizarre mating habits thereof.
- Brian Williams was seen with an entire pickup truck crammed to
the top with aroids, on his way 200 miles across the state to John
Banta's. At 10:00pm. He has not been heard from since.
- Dr. Tom Croat went to the Kampong on Sunday and apparently had a
flashback from his collecting days. He took collections of nearly
every aroid on the property, and was last seen in his bedroom,
buried under leaves and stems, muttering something about
"pressing" and "sap stains".
- We took the Lord P. out to dinner on Sunday night. He suggested
steak. Ron Weeks suggested Chinese. We went to the Chinese steak
place. Wilbert got the "Junior" size of steak. This being
America, what looked like about five pounds of dead cow arrived.
Wilbert, upon hearing that we were planning to take the leftovers
to Dr. Croat, made a valiant effort to finish the whole thing. I
haven't heard from him since. Have you?