I used to ride by Akatsuka Orchid Gardens nearly every day when I was a child – on the long way back from Hilo, I would see that cheerful orange orchid logo and know that home was just about ten minutes away.
Now, I’ve brought my fiancé to visit the Big Island for the first time, and to give him a sense of the local landmarks, we decided to spend an afternoon marveling over the many gorgeous blooms and scents in the greenhouses.
We arrived on a typically overcast Volcano afternoon – when the sky seems just about to thicken with rain and the ʻōhiʻa branches scrape about in the wind. The monochromatic weather made the collection of colors inside the gardens even more of a treasure. Aren’t those rich magentas and purples just overwhelming?
This particular orchid generated two fanciful associations for me – obviously the colors reminded me of a resplendent sunset in Kona, but the texture suggests an elaborate medieval-inspired velvet gown that I’d love to wear.
Since both of us find the delicate wonders of plant life absolutely fascinating, viewing the orchids proved a wonderful way to spend an afternoon – and a good way to continue my quest of supporting Volcano businesses during this tricky time for tourism!