EXHIBITS: An Inordinate Fondness for Orchids

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Science  21 Nov 2003:
Vol. 302, Issue 5649, pp. 1305
DOI: 10.1126/science.302.5649.1305d

For the Victorians, who ardently collected everything from conch shells to colonies, orchids were among the most coveted prizes. Grower and artist John Day (1824–88) sketched or painted about 3000 of the ornate flowers, often providing the world with its first glimpse of new specimens. You can browse highlights of Day's scrapbooks at this exhibit from the Royal Botanic Gardens in Kew, U.K. The exhibit features more than 70 of Day's best paintings of plants growing in his own collection or shipped to England from Asia, Africa, and the Americas. This Euanthe sanderiana previously known as Vanda sanderiana, which Day depicted in 1883, hailed from the island of Mindanao in the Philippines.


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