Frank Smith speaking in SF Bay Area

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Rick Barry

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Slipper enthusiasts in the San Francisco Bay Area will have a rare opportunity this week to hear two lectures presented by Frank Smith of Krull-Smith Orchids. The first talk, on preparing plants for display at the WOC, will be presented to the San Francisco Orchid Society on Tuesday, October 7 at the Hall of Flowers in Golden Gate Park. The second presentation, on new orchid hybrids from Florida, will take place at the meeting of the Malihini Orchid Society on October 10, 7:30 PM at the Hewlett-Packard campus at 19111 Pruneridge Avenue in Cupertino.

From the SF Society newsletter:

Over 30 years ago Frank Smith and Jim Krull started a small orchid nursery, Krull-Smith, in Apopka, Florida where they have been providing exceptional quality orchids to hobbyists and commercial growers ever since. In that time Krull-Smith has become the leading orchid hybridizer in the world for award-quality show plants, having received over 700 quality and cultural awards from the American Orchid Society. Krull-Smith is dedicated to providing the highest quality species and hybrids of Phalaenopsis, Cattleyas, and Paphiopedilums, as well as a wide array of novelty orchids such as Bulbophyllums, sought after by serious orchid hobbyists and collectors who are especially interested in showing their plants as well as creating unique and high quality orchid collections. Recently, at The 19th WOC, Krull-Smith Orchids had won many trophies and AOS awards including Grand Champion Orchid, Gold Medal Winner, Best in Show Trophy; Slipper Orchids, Best in Class Trophy; Multi-flowered Paphiopedilum, Paphiopedilum Hybrid, Reserve Champion Exhibit, and Peoples Choice Exhibit...

“Frank Smith is among a few special persons who, by dint of extraordinary talent or hard work, achieve heights that eclipse the ordinary orchidophile. Smith’s unusually good eye for great orchids enables him to pick them out from the crowd. This talent has helped him select and breed world renowned flowers. Few of the orchid public realizes that his reputation as a great orchid connoisseur is actually exceeded by his world fame as a daylily breeder. But, more than a good eye, he also possesses that creative spark that allows him to select good parents and foretell which crosses will produce new kinds of flowers that reside along the cutting edge of the hybridizer’s dreams. This gives him a novel perspective that allows him to push the envelope. Furthermore, he is a goal-oriented plant breeder who knows what he is breeding for, and this makes his flowers so much better than those of the other run-of-the-mill orchid breeders.

“Smith knows what he likes, what he wants and how to achieve his goals. But a man is more than the flowers he breeds. In this great man’s case there is a level of care and empathy for his fellow travelers; the loyalty that his workers have for him and his innate generosity to friends and others. He has been very generous in donating his own precious time; his energy and spirit is way beyond that normally expected of anyone.” - Harold Koopowitz


Regards,
Rick
 

aquacorps

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Rick, I think your post is misleading. It states:

"In that time Krull-Smith has become the leading orchid hybridizer in the world for award-quality show plants, having received over 700 quality and cultural awards from the American Orchid Society." Did K-S hybridizer all 700 awarded plants?

I checked orchidwiz for "most hybrids awarded" and Krull-Smth is not the "leader" for most hybrids awarded. My copy of orchidwiz a a year old (my laptop died), but as the the September, 2007 disc K-S is in 27th place. I don't recall him being mentioned in Koopowitz's book as one of the leading paph hybridizers either. He is the best grower of plants as evidenced by his awards. Rusty
 

cnycharles

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It doesn't look to me that Rick was being misleading, just that the article says these things. If anything the writer of the article is such. It also doesn't appear to me that the section quoted and attributed to Koopowitz says anything at all about Smith's being a paph breeder
 

Rick Barry

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Aquacorps,

You must mean that the SFOS newsletter is misleading, since you can't possibly be suggesting that the the part I actually composed, the first paragraph, is in any way debatable. There is truly no need for me to defend Frank's reputation as a breeder, as a grower, or as a human being. You have read what Harold Koopowitz thinks of Frank Smith. There is nothing I personally can add, but let me share with you some comments about Frank made on this very forum over the past year.

From CWT:
...personally I think he changed the future of Paph growing in this country with his tips and Ideas that he shared with us.
If you ever have the chance, go to one of his lectures, it will change your life.

From Ron-NY:
Frank IS a great man, I have heard of other wonderful things he has done as well. Not only is he a great man he is also a great slipper grower with quality plants.

From John M:
...Frank is such a great gentleman, he made me feel at ease in no time. In less than a minute, I felt like I was speaking with a long time, close friend.
Let there be no mistake, Frank Smith is one heck of a nice, kind, generous man! If I may be so bold; I'd like to request that you please support Krull Smith with your orchid business in the future. Bravo Krull Smith Orchids and Thank you Frank!!! Thank you so much!!!

The last quote may require further explanation, and it may help to illustrate just the sort of person Frank Smith is. As many Slippertalk members will recall, last winter John M lost all (or nearly all) of his orchid business due to a power outage combined with some severely cold weather. Many Slippertalk members immediately rallied to help John recover from such a devastating loss. Most prominent among those who responded was Frank Smith, who volunteered to send John several hundred Vandas as well as an assortment of other orchid plants. Frank wasn't the only one who responded, but his leadership and generosity were instrumental in moving others to join in the effort. Talk is cheap, but Frank really stepped up to the plate and delivered when when one of our own was in dire need of support!

Should you find this posting misleading in any way, I'd be happy to cite the specific threads where I found these quotations.

Regards,
Rick
 

aquacorps

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Rick, I was not commenting on the man FS, but the "facts" attributed to him in your original posting. My mirror is different than others on the forum and I accept that. In the words of D. A. F. de Sade

The mirror sees the man as beautiful, the mirror loves the man; another
mirror sees the man as frightful and hates him; and it is always the same
being who produces the impressions.

Rusty
 

NYEric

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Frank Smith is a very nice man, at least the times I met him. I don't know if he kicks cats in private; but who cares! It would be a good opportunity to listen and learn from him, and to enjoy the fruits of his plant breeding and growing efforts, at any chance. IMO!
 

aquacorps

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Eric, I saw Frank Smith speak a few years ago and it was worth the two hour drive.
 
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Brian Monk

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Frank Smith is a very nice man, at least the times I met him. I don't know if he kicks cats in private; but who cares! It would be a good opportunity to listen and learn from him, and to enjoy the fruits of his plant breeding and growing efforts, at any chance. IMO!

He doesn't kick cats in private, at least not his greenhouse cats. I know, I went out to his place to spay them. :)

Whether Frank is the leading hybridizer of orchids is irrelevant, he is so far beyond most of us when it comes to hybridizing that we can't even see where he stands. Just about all the paph breeding being done right now owes a tremendous amount to Frank & Krull-Smith. He is one of a very small number of people who have influenced the world of orchids far beyond his own personal sphere of influence. And I would argue that Frank has the single best collection of orchids on the planet.
 
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abneonebulosa

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Ah- I saw him speak at that SF society meeting. The raffle table made it all worth while. I got a Paph. Angela that has just now started to spike!
 

e-spice

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Wish I lived close to the SF area and could have attended. Based on the WOC display, the billion awards he's won, and his hybridizing efforts he gets my vote for the best grower on earth!

e-spice
 
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