Blooming fury over the JZ flower

2012-09-29 20:27

A nasty spat has broken out between local horticulturists over President Jacob Zuma’s new flower.

The plant experts were at each others’ throats this week, arguing about whether the SA Orchid Council, which named a Phalaenopsis orchid after the president last week, had illegally named the hybrid without obtaining permission from the copyright owner.

Michael Tibbs, the man who raised the dust over the pretty flower, accused the council of breaking every rule in the book by not getting permission from the copyright owner and making a public announcement before registration was confirmed.

Tibbs, a world-renowned orchid expert and grower, made these accusations at the yearly orchid conference and show in Rustenburg on Thursday.

But show organiser Tinus Oberholzer rubbished Tibbs’ allegations the following day, saying they were unfounded and he was trying to undermine efforts to honour the president.

Oberholzer said: “There is no copyright on the plants in question. We have the permission of the breeder to register the plants with the Royal Horticultural Society, which controls the registration of orchid names internationally.”

But Tibbs told City Press that his friend, who lives in China, held the copyright of the orchid in question.

He has demanded that the council issue a public apology for naming the flower before it was registered.

Alan Pike, president of the council, admitted that they named the flower and announced it before it was registered.

He said the council did not see anything wrong with this because “we had a temporary registration”.

According to Pike, the official registration took place a few days ago.

However, a registration certificate in the possession of City Press shows that the orchid was registered as Jacob Zuma only on Thursday. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.