A Brief History
The Windward Orchid Society was informally organized in Kaneohe in 1952. The Society, however, was not actively functional until Hawaii was chosen as the site for the Second World Orchid Conference in 1957. It was then that the Society, at that time known as the Orchid Society of Windward Oahu, geared up in order to support the staging of this conference at the Honolulu Academy of Arts. The Society has been active ever since. From twenty-odd members in the 1950’s, the Society has grown to some 200 members, one of the largest orchid societies in Hawaii.
In 1977, the Society was formally incorporated and registered as the Windward Orchid Society, Inc., a non-profit and non-political horticultural organization set up for the sole purpose of promoting the culture of orchids. The Society held its first orchid show in 1980. This year, the Windward Orchid Society celebrates our 30th anniversary of sponsoring orchid shows.
Windward Oahu has been considered the most desirable place to live since the days of Kamehameha I and has enjoyed an agricultural history second to none. In fact, when Kamehameha I divided the conquered lands of Oahu, he kept Kaneohe as his personal property. At various times from the mid-nineteenth century to the 1920’s sugar cane, rice, pineapple, coffee and even cotton were grown commercially on Windward Oahu. Even now, remnants of ancient Hawaiian fishponds remain to remind us of the rich agricultural legacy of this land. How fitting it is, then, that this should be the home of the Windward Orchid Society.
The Orchid is considered the “King of Flowers” all over the world and has become synonymous with sub-tropical Hawaii. Once the pastime of the rich, thanks to modern science, orchid culture has become an affordable hobby for all. The Windward Orchid Society’s mission is to promote orchids, disseminating information relating to the culture of orchids, and rewarding excellence and proficiency for outstanding accomplishments in this field. It continuously strives to promote universal appreciation for this most exotic of all plants.