Foto/Photo: M.Rosário Almeida Braga
Phalaenopsis violacea was the symbol of the show

The 17th World Orchid Conference (17th WOC) was held from April 26th to May 2nd, 2002 in Shah Alam, near Kuala Lumpur, capital of Malaysia.
The general theme of the conference was "Sustaining Orchids for the Future".
It was a very well organized, interesting and beautiful conference.
The place chosen for the conference, the Mines Exhibition Center, is a large building with very good infra-structure.
The main room at ground level was divided by a rustic walk-way made with tree trunks. On one side of that walk-way was the exuberant display area and on the other side the sales area, with around 70 booths.
The Lecture Program took place at the first floor, with the posters displayed in the adjacent hall. From the Opening Ceremony, when the sultan and many national and local authorities were present, it was evident the great importance given to the 17th WOC.
More than 800 participants, from 54 countries, were registered.
As one should expect, the great majority of participants came from Asian countries but there were also many Australians and Europeans. This time the number of North Americans participating was small. And being so far away from South America, I was the only Brazilian registered (I am living in Australia during this year) and I met very few South Americans.

  The orchid show drew attention, first of all, for its great quantity of flowers. The Asians didn't seem to put any limits in their efforts to show the quality of their products and the result was a show of magnificent colors.
Foto/Photo: M.Rosário Almeida Braga
Foto/Photo: M.Rosário Almeida Braga
Foto/Photo: M.Rosário Almeida Braga

  Among all the displays, the two first prizes really stood out from the "sea of orchids":

- Singapore Botanical Gardens got the "Grand Champion Display" with the theme "Orchids in Our Daily Life" where one side was the front of a Malay house during the holiday "HariRaya Aidil Fitri",
Foto/Photo: M.Rosário Almeida Braga
  and the other, the main room of a Chinese house during New Year Festival
Foto/Photo: M.Rosário Almeida Braga

- Eric Young Foundation got the prize "Reserve Grand Champion Display" with a simple and very elegant combination of Phragmopedium, Paphiopedilum and Cymbidium of outstanding quality.

Foto/Photo: M.Rosário Almeida Braga
Foto/Photo: M.Rosário Almeida Braga
  Their Phragmopedium Jason Fischer 'Isle of Jersey' was chosen as the best hybrid of the show.
Foto/Photo: M.Rosário Almeida Braga

  For those like me interested in really different species the display of Hans Christiansen Orchidegartneriet, from Denmark, was an oasis among countless hybrids.
Hans Christiansen, with his superb specimen of Bulbophyllum phalaenopsis won the prize "Reserve Show Grand Champion" and a gold medal.
Foto/Photo: M.Rosário Almeida Braga
Foto/Photo: M.Rosário Almeida Braga
Bulbophyllum phalaenopsis (detail)
Foto/Photo: M.Rosário Almeida Braga
The "Best Non-Malaysian
Orchid Species" chosen
was his big plant of
Coelogyne lawrenciana
'EOC Paris', with more
than 20 flowers
spikes, which also got
a gold medal.

The perfect flowers of
Paphiopedilum rothschildianum

'Giant Wings' grown by
Tokyo Orchid Nursery,
were awarded with the
"Show Grand Champion",
which also got the prize
"Best Cut-flower".

Paph. rothschildianum is a
species native from Malaysia.
Foto/Photo: Geoff Fulcher. Photo: Geoff Fulcher

R.F. Orchids, the only American displayer,
was awarded nine silver medals.
One of them was given to the beautiful
Robert's Delight 'Crownfox Big Red' FCC/AOC
Foto/Photo: Geoff Fulcher.
Foto: Geoff Fulche

and other to Cattleya intermedia var. orlata 'Crownfox".
Foto/Photo: M.Rosário Almeida Braga
Epicattleya Aroma Grande
In their display
some species of

stood out, together with
beautiful intergeneric hybrids
such as Epicattleya Aroma Grande
(= Cattleya aclandiae x Encyclia cordigera).

Among the other plants
received prizes,
the Brazilian orchids were represented by
Oncidium Serevent (62.5% Onc. lanceanum), grown by
K. Rauendran Orchid Nursery,
that got a silver medal
Foto/Photo: M.Rosário Almeida Braga

and Sophrolaeliocattelya
'Candy Ball'
Sophronitis coccinea and
12.5% Laelia flava), displayed by
Nagoya International
Orchid Show, that got a bronze medal.
Foto/Photo: M.Rosário Almeida Braga

  The plant judged as the best Cattleya of the show was Brassolaeliocattleya Sanyang Ruby 'Crowned Drago', with large dark red petals.

Besides the orchid plants displayed by around 270 different growers, part of the main room was occupied by many artists who displayed their beautiful works using orchids in paintings, floral art, ceramics, stamps, photography and embroidery.

The Lecture Program went for four days, organized in 5 keynote addresses, 5 symposia ("Orchids of the World", "Orchid Science Made Easy", "Conservation and Habitats", "Hybridization" and "Biotechnology"), 3 mini-symposia ("Floral Biology", "Cultivation" and "CITES") and many concurrent lectures, but never more than three at the same time and at adjacent rooms.
I lost some of the presentations as I went to the Cameron Highlands to see Malaysian orchids in the wild (see Orchid News # 17) but I had the opportunity to attend to some good talks and only heard good comments about the presentations.
Dr. Helen Nair, responsible of the Lecture Program, scheduled for the last day the well attended business forum
"Orchid Business into the New Millennium" and the interesting final Panel Session: "The Way Forward for Sustainable Orchids".

Malaysia, located between Thailand and Singapore, is interested in becoming one of the big orchid producers of Southeastern Asia and they organized a World Conference of a high standing, to match their interests.

  Foto/Photo: ? Manipulação digital/Digital manipulation: Sergio Araujo Born in Rio de Janeiro City, Rosário is a biologist and master of Marine Botanical

Between 1988 and 1994, she lives in the Parque Estadual da Ilha do Cardoso, south littoral of São Paulo, when she began to be interested in Atlantic Forest Conservation.

In September 1994, she started to work at Quinta do Lago Nurseries, immediately falling in love with the orchids.

Since then, she has been learning about many aspects of the orchids and about their commercialization.

She has three sons and is married to the Australian ecologist Tim Moulton, who is, during this year, working in Brisbane, Australia.

  All the photos of the show © Maria do Rosário de Almeida Braga

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