JAMES V. ELMORE

1943-1989

The Bromeliad Cultivar Register has many Elmore hybrids, in fact some 709, but we have had very few photographs to show what these cultivars look like. Thanks to his niece, Lori Fullerton Melton we were able to remedy some of the omissions beside the name Elmore but there is a long way to go.

In 1989 Carol Johnson of Pineapple Place wrote an article on the exploits of James V. Elmore and because few would have access to this archival material this is reproduced here.

"A newspaper obituary leaves so much unsaid. It is all there, yet it is as though no real person is involved. James Elmore contributed so much to the Florida bromeliad scene, and then far beyond. Bromeliad growers all over the world cherish Elmore neoregelia hybrids and covet those they do not have. There are many bromeliad lovers who were converted to the hobby thru GRANDE MAGAZINE, a creation 90% James Elmore.

I first met Jim in 1977 when he attended a Florida Council meeting with Bob Puterbaugh, and at that meeting he advanced the idea of publishing a magazine strictly for bromeliophiles featuring photos of private collections; the plants, personalities, habitats and special projects, nearly all to be in color. His enthusiasm was contagious and the fledgling Council was very soon in the publishing business. I recall a photo session for volume one, issue one (pages 18/20 held at Bob Puterbaugh's house in Brandon, when Jim was photographing for "A Tale of the Fabled Takemuras". Props for the session were a green plastic tarp, a supply of dry ice, several stepladders, lights and of course Jim with his camera. The plants were staged over the dry ice, we "helpers" climbed 3 of the ladders and Jim the fourth with his camera. We each held up a corner of the tarp with one hand and fanned the mist rising from the dry ice so that it swirled. The finished product, after hundreds of exposures, made the plants appear t be rising from the mist.

He was interested only in Neoregelia and it was a real struggle to get him to publish photos of any other bromeliads. A photographic assignment in South America was responsible for rousing his interest in bromeliads. Like so many other collectors, before long he was in business. He grew and hybridized neoregelias at Rainbow's End Plantation in Bradenton.

The Elmore flair for dramatic presentation was evident in everything he did. At shows where there were commercial booths, all the growers brought hundreds of bromeliad plants and toiled throughout the show to sell them. Jim brought representative samples of his neos and took orders for future delivery, and his booth was always a real fun and show place. His "Silver Suitcase" show at Selby in 1983 was a real classy production.

As with so many imaginative and artistic people, Jim was a real procrastinator and it was this trait that eventually put an end to the publication of GRANDE MAGAZINE . That, and he had to take time out to work for a living. The four issues that exist are collector's items and a fitting monument to his artistry."

James V. Elmore
James V. Elmore


http://fcbs.org/