Steven has grown Orchids since the age of about 23 (which is quite some time ago !) he eventually became the chairman of the Cambridge Orchid Society. Every time the society put on a display of Orchids, ferns were used to set off the flowers. The interest in ferns stems from that time, he then started to propagate one or two of the Nephrolepis cultivars to try and cover a little of the expense of the Orchid habit. No hope of that really !
We visited the Newbury Orchid show with the Cambridge Orchid Society and the only plant we bought was a fern from one of the trade stands, with no idea what it was. It grew absolutely huge within a year of being in the Orchid house here and we were hooked ! It turned out to be Cyathea cooperi which as some of you may know can be an absolute monster, soon outgrowing any normal greenhouse.
Our first ever display was in 1997 at the Newbury Orchid show with the encouragement of Mr.Don Smallman (so its all his fault then !!) and we also did a few small society shows just selling the Nephrolepis cultivars and a couple of hardy species. We’re not really too sure how it came to be this big or important to us but if anyone had asked at that time if we wanted to do Chelsea or something similar I’m sure the answer would’ve been “No chance” or something along those lines.
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