Looking Back but Moving Forward...

Looking Back but Moving Forward...

Posted by Corinne Akatsuka on Oct 31st 2017

Over the 40 years that we've been in business, things have changed along the way. There were many more orchid growers when we first started growing orchids in the 70's. Many more hobbiest were interested in investing the time & willing to have the patience to grow orchids. Many of you are long time customers who have been on this journey with us from the beginning. 

Remember when our garden area was made up of a cinder pathway circa the 1980's? 

Or when we started to build our main state of the art greenhouse in the early 2000's?

Prior to all of that, before we opened our doors as a public retailer in 1983, we were in the orchid business strictly wholesaling cut cymbidium orchid sprays.  

Cymbidiums are beautiful orchids with long sprays & hardy, long lasting blooms.  It's popularity nowadays is mostly in high end flower arrangements & wedding arrangements.  Cymbidiums need a cooler climate to grow and while Volcano was the perfect place, the downside was the blooming season.  Cymbidiums traditionally bloom in the winter roughly between November - April.  It was tough for my in-laws to make ends meet with a crop growing only 6 months out of the year.  So, my father-in-law changed to growing Cattleyas.  We still offer cymbidiums as they are available & in season.  

Today, we continue to specialize in Cattleyas.  These orchids are the large bloom (4-5") fragrant type.  We are one of the few orchid growers still hybridizing & creating our own original orchids.  My father-in-law has a special process & criteria he uses to select which ones to cross breed.  

Many growers have moved away from the orchid growing business.  With too much competition from the mass production of orchids in the cheap overseas market, it's hard to survive. While at times, it seems easier to just close operations & move on, we believe there is an interest & need for orchid education.  Basic orchid care is easy.  However, like children, they require patience and time to grow.  

As the next generation operators, Takeshi and I hope to bring awareness to those new to orchids, share our love for them, give you our tips on orchid care, tell fun facts, and take you behinds the scenes.  We hope you'll continue on our journey with us as we grow & learn more about the wonderful world of orchids and share our orchid knowledge with the world.