Monday, May 02, 2011

Rare Plants Rare People Rare Time at DCH Rare Plant Auction

I must admit. I was a little nervous. After all, I was emceeing at this year's Rare Plant Auction held Saturday night at Longwood Gardens before some 300 rare plant connoisseurs from around the country.

Now you all know me. If I've written a press release about something, that usually gives me enough information to have a 10 minute conversation at a cocktail party.

But talking up rare plants to this audience had the makings of a Saturday Night Live skit. Between my serious lack of horticultural knowledge and my Southern accent, I was destined to butcher such names as diospyros kak 'Jiro' and Neviusia alabamensis. I was even having trouble with Hammenmalis virginian 'Little Suzie' even though it's almost my namesake.

I went the day before during set up to talk to the "experts" and take notes. Then I spent several hours on Saturday reviewing the program and making note cards. I thought I was back in graduate school writing a paper!

My fears were, as most fears, self inflicted and unfounded. The Rare Plant Auction truly attracts rare plant lovers. And people in this industry and those who love plants are indeed ladies and gentlemen who were more than happy to help me out and graciously did not shy away from me sticking a microphone in there faces and spontaneously asking them about their favorite, to die for plants!

It was a great event for a great cause, Delaware Center for Horticulture's greening of Delaware. More than 300 people enjoyed the evening, but not nearly as much as I did.

Can't wait to do it again next year.

Maybe I'll even get to be the "Queen Bee"!

Suzi, a rare plant nerd in the making
Garden Media Group

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