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Gesneriad Society Convention 2008:

Best in Show: Nautilocalyx Collection

A collection won best in show!  I wonder if that had ever happened before.  If you think about it, that's an incredible feat.  All of the plants have to be at least class-winner quality for the collection to qualify.

And there's no doubt about the quality of these plants grown by Bill Price -- a marvelous accomplishment.

Nautilocalyx collection

The plant to the left in back, dark foliage with maroon leafbacks, is Nautilocalyx lynchii.  To the right in back, with foliage resembling that of N. forgettii is Nautilocalyx antioquensis.  In the front on the left is Nautilocalyx porphyrotrichus. The plant with the dark foliage on the right in front is "Nautilocalyx sp. #23", and the plant in the middle was labeled "Nautilocalyx sp."

Not Best in Show: Diastema comiferum

Diastema comiferum

This spectacular plant, also grown by Bill Price, didn't win Best in Show.  It didn't win Best Rhizomatous.  It didn't even get a blue ribbon.

We're used to seeing Diastema comiferum grown as a miniature, but this was far from tiny.  It was growing in at least a 6-inch pot, and as you can see the leaves were, for this species, gigantic.  And, of course, it had all those flowers.

D. comiferum is one of the parents of Dale Martens's intergeneric hybrid xPhinastema 'California Dreaming'.  It's the only diastema with red flowers.  Too bad the flowers aren't red on the outside too.

Lest we feel too sorry for Bill not getting a blue with this plant, it should be mentioned that it lost out to another of Bill's entries, an xAchimenantha.