The first Chinese Spring Orchids Festival opened a few days ago in Keqiao, a district of Shaoxing, Zhejiang province. With the theme of “embracing spring with the fragrance of orchids”, the festival took a form of online exhibition that accommodated more than 1,100 pots of fine orchids from all over the country and enabled viewers to see these remarkable plants by a simple click. Of the 433 potted orchids that entered the 2021 Chinese Spring Orchids Contest, Chikehesu (a cultivar that has lily-white lip, lotus-shaped petal, and crimson sheath) and Tonghesu (a cultivar that has lily-white lip, lotus-shaped petal, and wide sepal) submitted by the West Lake Scenic Area Flower Harbor Management Office won the golden medal and bronze medal respectively.
Among the known cultivars of Spring Orchids, lily-white lip is a feature rare to see and lotus-shaped petal is even rarer. Both Chikehesu and Tonghesu fall into the category that combines lily-white lip and lotus-shaped petal and are nowhere to be found except in the Orchids Garden of Hangzhou Flower Nursery. Chikehesu, while in bud, will produce a pair of delicate flowers. It is the only known cultivar that fits together the features of lily-white lip, lotus-shaped petal and crimson sheath and is thus as precious as gold. Tonghesu, on the other hand, resembles Dafugui (another member of the orchid family) in look, showing an unmistakable air of elegance. The flower has three wide sepals in bright emerald green, bending forward over the lily-white lip, a combination of rare features that distinguish it from other common orchids cultivars.
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