By Keola Kawanako

The narrative of the anthurium plant starts off a very long time back in a region far from Hawaii. Anthurium plants first popped up inside the rainforests of South America. They resided there undisturbed for hundreds of centuries. Native peoples might not have made a huge deal about them simply because they had been much simpler in appearance than they are these days.

Out of the hundreds of species of anthurium flowers, one was taken to Hawaii in 1889 by a man named Samuel Damon. Damon was an intriguing man. The son of missionaries, he rose to fantastic prominence within the Kingdom of Hawaii as a business man and as a politician. In fact, in 1924 he left an estate which was worth over $250M. This may not sound like much, but converted into today's dollars this figure is well into the billions. Damon, or more likely his landscapers, grew the anthurium andreanum which he imported within the gardens of his estate.

Out of Damon's gardens, these plants were given to other folks who also started growing them in their gardens. These plants passed from garden to garden as people introduced them to close friends. A huge discovery occurred several years later when individuals learned to propagate these plants by seeds, instead of cuttings. Seed reproduction permitted folks to selectively breed the flowers with the very best qualities and resulted in a proliferation of blooms in new shapes and colors.

Within the 1940s florists in Hawaii began selling a smattering of these blooms in their stores. These blooms became quite well-liked with tourists and locals, alike. And an business was born. Some folks began expanding their farming of anthuriums from their gardens to full scale farms. At first they raised these plants beneath the shade of tree ferns and fruit trees, but as their businesses matured, these people began growing anthuriums within structures specifically constructed for growing these gorgeous flowers.

Nowadays, anthurium blooms have turned into a global business. The invention of the airplane had a great deal to do with this. In the past, most anthuriums had been marketed within the islands, but now, the airplane makes it possible for anthuriums to be delivered across the globe.

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