Orchids in the Desert

Despite its desert location, Baja California Sur is a place where you can discover a variety of different microclimates just by crossing a river or a hill.  Todos Santos, a colorful village just 45 minutes from Capella Pedregal, almost imitates a Mediterranean climate, where you are able to discover an unimaginable variety and abundance of plants and fruits you would never expect to encounter in Baja.  

Personally enchanted by the mesmerizing beauty of orchids and longing for my own orchid sanctuary, I was very lucky to meet a man from Todos Santos, who grows these beautiful plants.  Mr. Heriberto Parra Hake, an agronomic engineer who specializes in botanicals, is also an orchid lover. Recently he invited me to see his magical garden.  The garden boasts exotic plants, fruits, flowers, and my favorite part, an impressive collection of orchids.

For many, an orchid is a symbol of unattainable perfection. Its beauty is immaculate, its shapes unimaginable, and its color variety unmatched.  Heriberto believes that orchids are among the most developed plants on Earth.  It is believed that with their smell, energy and micro-vibration, we can cure basic illnesses, physical, emotional and spiritual.  Today we already have beauty products with orchid extracts, and he believes that very soon we will use orchids in medicine as well.

You might wonder, how a humidity loving, fragile plant could survive in Baja’s arid climate.  Heriberto addressed this issue by building a special nursery with sprinklers, semi-shade and otherwise optimum growing and blooming conditions.  Plus, unlike the rest of Baja, Todos Santos possesses its own milder microclimate.

Heriberto, who will happily discuss orchids all day long, does not sell his beloved flower.  Instead, those who look to purchase orchids in Baja must hope to find them in specialized flower boutiques.  But they are well worth the purchase.  Just be careful for, as Heriberto warned me, orchid growing may become an addiction and life-long indulgence!

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