Florida Agricultural Hall of Fame
Bob Fuchs is recognized as orchid royalty around the globe. He was only 10 years old at the time of his first experience collecting orchids in the wild. He was 14 when he went on his first salvage collecting trip out of the country. By the time he graduated from high school he had amassed quite a collection and began his involvement with orchid societies. In 1970, Bob graduated from Florida State University and opened R.F. Orchids in December of that year. At that time, Bob’s official profession was teaching at Homestead Junior High, and the nursery was open only on weekends and afternoons after school.
1984 brought orchid growers from around the world to Miami for the 11th World Orchid Conference and its prestigious orchid show. R.F. Orchids’ plant Vanda Deva “Robert” was honored as the Grand Champion of the World. This Grand Champion award catapulted Bob into international recognition and acceptance as one of the leading vandaceous orchid firms in the world.
Bob retired from teaching in 1985 and incorporated the nursery. R.F. Orchids has continued to grow ever since. Bob is a life member and former trustee of the American Orchid Society, life member of the Royal Horticultural Society of Thailand, member of the Royal Horticultural Society of England, past president and current board member of the South Florida Orchid Society; founding member and past president of the East Everglades Orchid Society. In 1994 the South Florida Orchid Society presented him with its Distinguished Service Award. He is a member of the Homestead-Florida City Chamber of Commerce, and a generous supporter of the education and conservation programs at Miami Metro Zoo. In October 1999, the City of Homestead presented Bob with the Key to The City and proclaimed Robert Fuchs Day, in recognition of his dedication, hard work and contributions to the improvement of the horticulture industry in our community. In January, 2001, bob was named Miami-Dade County’s Agriculturalist of the Year. Bob had the honor of co-chairing the 19th World Orchid Conference which was held in January 2008 in Miami.