Garden Fair more than plants

PUHI — Baco Fernandez got his anthurium almost a year after he put in his order.

“I wanted it at the (Kaua‘i County Farm Bureau) Farm Fair,” the happy purchaser said. “But I knew they were going to get one for me. Today I got it.”

Fernandez was admiring the “Oshiro” anthurium specimen he purchased from Kaua‘i Anthurium Association member Holly Moises.

The anthurium club was just one of the many vendors who were on hand for the Kaua‘i County Farm Bureau’s Garden Fair at the Kaua‘i Community College campus Saturday.

Despite the ongoing construction of the college’s One Stop Shop building, the vendors worked around the screened-off area while setting up their stations and exhibits.

An abundance of demonstrations and lectures greeted patrons, many of whom appeared to know what they were there for — they zipped in for purchases and went on their way.

Laura Kawamura said one of the new features was the partnership with the Great Weigh Out program where participants were able to make a potted herb garden after listening to Terry Sekioka explain some plant care basics.

Bokashi took advantage of the fair to make its appearance on Kaua‘i, the crew from M. Kawamura Farm Enterprises working to get the bags of organic fertilizer displayed properly.

“You know how it is,” Ed Kawamura said. “You gotta have something new every time the people come.”

For this fair, Kawamura was offering the 100 percent pure organic fertilizer that is produced on O‘ahu by Organa Agriculture Hawai‘i.

Created from humic acid, the organic fertilizer is used to loosen hard clay soils and is an effective treatment that will re-establish the natural soil ph balance through the release of calcium, sulture, micronutrients, nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium.

“It can also be used as a compost starter,” said James Piretti of Kilauea, the Kaua‘i representative for the product.

Sam Lee of the Kaua‘i Bonsai Club was busy fielding questions about a unique bonsai created from a bougainvillea.

That bonsai had an aged trunk with strong characteristics and attracted not only bonsai admirers but photographers who took advantage of the displays to capture their own images.

Lee said he got the plant from a person in Lawai and just worked with it.

“You just cannot copy Mother Nature,” a photographer said while clicking away.

In addition to the garden offerings, the 4-H Club also hosted its livestock show featuring hogs and fowl. One of the Kawamura family, Robert, served as the go-between with a divider board as seven hogs strutted their stuff before a judge.

Milan Rupert of Kaua‘i Nursery & Landscaping started the day’s agenda of lectures, speaking on “Maintenance and Care of Tropical Fruit Trees.”

Other speakers included the Bonyu Kai who provided a bonsai demonstration while Jacqueline Kozak, the education coordinator for the Kaua‘i Invasive Species Committee discussed “How to Plant a Garden to Protect the Forest.”

George Mukai and Roy Yamakawa offered “Tips on Growing Anthurium,” and Will Ronaldson took time out from their busy Growing Green offerings to talk about “Soils and Amendments.”

But the kim chee bottle of fuel at the Kawamura booth provided a base for discussing “Power Equipment Maintenance,” a subject that resulted from many small engines being affected by the addition of ethanol to gasoline.

As Kawamura shook the bottle of fuel that came from a small engine carburetor, he couldn’t help but joke, “All that’s missing is the cabbage.”

• Dennis Fujimoto, photographer, staff writer, can be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 253).

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