April 2013 - Harry Phillips

Harry PhillipsHarry PhillipsPerceptions and Realities of Growing Orchids

We are excited to welcome back Harry Phillips, of Andy’s Orchids fame, to speak to us on ‘Perceptions and Realities of Growing Orchids’. This is a very new presentation from Harry that will address the perceptions that hobbyists have about numerous aspects of orchid growing and the actual realities of experiences that he and his brother, Andy, have had in their many years of growing orchids.  This talk should be very informative and of value to novice and advanced orchidists alike.  Harry also will provide for the opportunity table their ever popular plants from Andy’s Orchids (http://www.andysorchids.com).

Harry Phillips is a native San Diegian, whose father taught him to appreciate plants at an early age. In January of 1963, Harry's younger brother, Andy (of Andy's Orchids fame), was born and six years later is when it all started. They were both exposed to exotic plants and flowers at an early age, but when Andy became interested and, later, obsessed with orchids, Harry somehow resisted becoming involved with them for as long as he could. He assisted Andy in his passion by building his first two greenhouses and Andy would reward him with a hybrid that was in bloom, tell him to bring it back when it goes out of bloom, and exchange it for one in bloom. Well, this would only last about a year until Harry decided that he wanted to keep one and get it to re-bloom, the beginning of the end. 

In 1986, Harry, with his soon to be wife, Leslie, moved with Andy and his orchid collection to Encinitas, California. Being constantly exposed to all of Andy's orchids was beginning to have an effect on Harry. Shortly after, Andy left for four months to Costa Rica, and placed Harry in charge of the collection. When Andy returned he found that Harry had not killed too many plants and managed to become even more addicted. Andy, now feeling more confident about leaving his orchid collection under Harry's care, began to plan a cycling trip through South America, which ended up lasting two years. After that it was all over for Harry, he was completely addicted to orchids. Harry assisted Andy part time, with the beginnings of Andy's Orchids for 10 years, while holding a full time job to pay the mortgage, going full time at the nursery about 12 years ago. He is usually the one who attends the shows, taking their well-known Wardian cases with them.  Harry’s passion in orchids are in the genera Sobralia and Elleanthus, but you ask him at any particular time of the year which is his favorite orchid, it will most likely be the one or ones in bloom at that time. He has traveled in Mexico, the Caribbean, and Ecuador viewing orchids in the wild. Harry believes that growing epiphytic orchids the way they grow in nature is best and the orchids seem to agree. 

Wed, 04/03/2013 - 6:30pm - 9:30pm