July 1998

Species Group Meeting, July 4th
Time: 9A.M. sharp
Place: Quail Gardens Ecke’s Building

This will be a special meeting at Quail and will include a review of the orchid plants installed at Quail to see how they are doing and what better can be done for them.

Ann Tuskes will be giving a talk for the group, and as always there will be plenty to eat and drink, breakfast style! If you come try to bring something to share with the others there. Just enough for four or five folks to have a bit is OK, we don’t expect anyone to feed the whole group. These North County Meetings have the best attendance, usually 35 to 45 persons show up.

In June, the meeting was at Tom Osborn’s in Poway. Lots of folks and good eats. Some incredible species plants were bragged on, and a fine time was had by all. Hope you will visit this time.

Free Books -
by Harry, Editor
Well, you still have a small chance, albeit a small one, to pick up one of the free books We have passed out or mailed out all the FREE books that were requested. Alma is now able to tell how many are extra and the ones remaining will be offered at the July meeting.

The Society has purchased with the Garner fund interest, four of the books or pamphlets from the American Orchid Society. We passed them out to anyone in the society who requested same, one of the four to each member. About 230 members ordered one,,, out of 751 members. Pathetic response!

I know I got on your case last month so bad people that ordered one were apologizing to me for not picking them up! Well, sorry about that, those are not the folks I was amazed at. I’m proud of them!! They at least showed some get up and go and ordered a book!

You who did not order have another chance now!!! FROM 6:30 TO 7:30 ONLY AT THE JULY MEETING, if you have not already taken a book, you may simply sign you name and choose one that is remaining IF YOU ARE A MEMBER. If there are still books left by 7:30 they will be sold DURING THE REFRESHMENT BREAK to ANY MEMBER who wants to buy one at a great price. This means if you already have one you can now pick up one of each of the others if you so desire.

These are the books that will be available,

1. Orchid Pests and Diseases, how can you get rid of it if you don’t know
what it is?
2. Orchid Growing Basics, an informative cultural guide.
3. Growing Orchids, a cultural handbook with many hints.
4. Your First Orchid, a guide for beginners, good info here.

There are only about 80 various books left, so get there early if you don’t have one yet and get in line. From 6:30 to 7:30 you can pick yours out free, during the break time the rest will be sold.

Thoughts Heard Around the Tech Group -(TechSpeak)

I think these came from Ron Kaufmann

1) I can please only one person per day. Today is not your day. Tomorrow isn't looking good either.

2) Never put off until tomorrow what you can avoid doing altogether.

3) Everyone has a right to be stupid. Some just abuse the privilege.

4) On the keyboard of life, always keep one finger on the escape key.

5) Please, Lord, let me prove that winning the lottery won't spoil me.

6) Does vacuuming count as Aerobic Exercise?

7) Young at Heart. Slightly Older in Other Places.

8) Time is Nature's way of making sure that everything doesn't Go Wrong at once.

9) The trouble with being in the rat race is that even if you win, you're still a rat.

10) I loathe people who keep dogs. They are cowards who haven't got the guts to bite people themselves.

11) If swimming is so good for your figure, how do you explain whales?

12) There's no speed limit on the Information Superhighway.

13) It is much easier to apologize than to ask permission.

14) There are two rules for ultimate success in life. Never tell everything you know,,,,

An article by Ray Creek, published in England recently by the Royal
Horticultural Society.

From The Orchid Review Vol 106, No 1219, p22. Jan-Feb 1998

“See-through pots - a new breakthrough ?

By Ray Creek

Why is it that the obvious is often not seen straight away ? Like most other growers I have realized the need for a plentiful supply of air at the roots of our orchids. Although I have noticed the green chlorophyll in roots, until recently, I had not realized the implications. Many orchid species have spent millions of years evolving with their roots exposed to both air and light, producing root systems capable of photosynthesis. We can see proof of this in Phalaenopsis. Scrape away the surface of a root which has been exposed to light and underneath you will find green tissue.

Have you ever wondered why the roots on many orchids, Phalaenopsis especially, escape from the compost and grow outside the pot ? I had previously assumed that they did not like the type of compost I was using. I now believe these roots are looking for fresh air and light, and are doing their best to grow towards these factors. I remember one keen Phalaenopsis grower telling me several years ago not to cut off the roots above ground because these are the best ones. But, are they growing in the right place?

If we could encourage these same strong, healthy roots to grow in the compost would we not have better plants? The only way to test this is to try growing your plants in transparent pots. I believe transparent pots have been tried for orchids in the past. However I suppose the only practical material then available would been glass, which would have had its problems.

Today, now that plastics are becoming ever cheaper and more adaptable, the answer may be plastic see-through pots. These are now available in several sizes, but as they become more popular even more sizes are sure to follow, particularly as the large Dutch nurseries find they can use them to produce a much improved, tidier product for the pot-plant trade in Phalaenopsis. Other species, particularly those with naturally occurring chlorophyll in their roots, should also benefit with roots contained in the pot rather than on the surface of the growing medium.

From my own observations I have found that stronger healthier root-systems can be produced. One further bonus is that we can see the roots and compost through the pot wall and so tell at a glance what condition they are in. This advantage alone could be worth the small extra cost of a see-through pot.”

Repotting - Recycling - And Speaking of Big Tubs,,,
by Harry, Editor

When you tackle the job of repotting there are a lot of things to think about. One of them is what to do with all the left over old mix you are taking out of the pots. You either have to toss it in the trash, compost it, or dig it into the garden somewhere. Even tho the orchids would rather have new mix, that doesn’t mean other plants in the yard will not do well using it.

I have a couple of pictures here of plants I have potted up in mostly old orchid mix, with a little new planter mix thrown in. Some of the plants really thrive on the old bark when it is deteriorating. I used it this year on dahlias, roses, alstromerias and a lot of Epidendrums.

Each pot size was chosen for what I had to put in it. Most of those you see are 15 inch pots and larger. A few inches of plastic peanuts in the bottom will help keep the mix in the pot and help drainage. I use trays made for mixing concrete to mix the old bark and new planter mix. Dump in both and mix them thoroughly, then you are ready to pot the plant of your choice.

Dahlia bulbs are planted in the spring about two months from when you want to see flowers. June or July will be the best time to have them flower. Epidendrums can be repotted any time of the year. You will probably see more new growth in spring so when the new roots start give it a try. Since the old stuff you are going to use is mostly old bark anyway, all I do for Epidendrums is add fine bark so it is about 50/50 old and new, then toss in a little planter mix, perhaps 5 to 10 percent of the whole mix.

My friends have taught me to grow the Epi’s in big tubs like this, and upon visiting some of the yards I found Epi’s in tubs up to 25 gallon with huge plants of 8 to 15 heads of flowers.

Can you imagine a yard, terraced across the back, perhaps 60 feet wide, four levels, and 30 inch tubs clear across all four levels? Now imaging all of those plants in bloom with Epis of every imaginable color and you have just visited Asi’s yard. And many of Asi’s friends grow Epis in these huge planters.

I visited Linda’s yard which was so full of Epis in huge tubs I’m sure her two little dogs have to go next door to take a whiz! And if some day you can’t get from I-5 to 805 on 905, well, I’m sure Linda’s yard has spilled over onto the freeway!

Mel’s yard included a pond and a little river, a huge stand of Cattleyas grown outside, and Tessie’s yard, well, hard to describe,,, Epi’s everywhere in between Cherimoya, Persimmon, Plumeria, Star Citrus, etc.. Yes,,, the flowers clusters ARE a couple of feet over Tessie’s head in the picture to the right here.

So if you’re looking for something to do with that old mix don’t throw it away, recycle it for some great blooms, and if you are out of space, or just like the idea of being able to move your plants around a bit you might look into planting some things in large tubs.

Tessie and a few of her very large planter Epi's

Some Interesting Plants -
by Harry, Editor

Lc (C. Barbara Kirsch X Lc Oconee ‘Mendenhall’ AM/AOS)

The picture on this page is a cross made by Charlie Fouquette. It is an intense colored heavy substance Lc with a very deep dark purple colored lip. Flowers are 4 3/4 inches across from tip to tip. Great fragrance! Not surprising it has such good attributes given the parents Charlie used.

Picture on this page is a plant owned by Thelma Saria. She brought it over and I asked her why. She said she just wanted a lot of people to see it. So, I took it to the species meeting in June and about 40 persons got to enjoy it! It’s Dendrobium thrysiflorum a species, a very fine form of the plant which is actually a joining of two fine plants of the same species to yield this improved form. White sepals and petals and a bright yellow and orange lip makes a really striking display. The tag says it came from L & R Nursery in New Zealand, Thelma bought this plant bare root at the orchid show at Quail Gardens sale for ten bucks!!! Let’s hope he comes back next year..

Thelma has been growing this plant outside in Chula Vista up by the Home Depot/Costco area.

Neofinetia falcata, variegated

The plant on this page is a very old plant, although it’s in only about a 4” pot. The whole plant would fit in a 12 inch circle. The smell is strong coconut fragrance, very enjoyable. The big attraction here is the variegated leaves.

This plant was given to me by Les Kawamoto many years ago as a little one growth bugger. Because of the lack of chlorophyll it grows new growths very slowly.

This last winter it was outside all winter and I just brought it inside when it decided it would bloom. Counting all the growths there are 15 good sized ones. They put out about ten spikes with tiny little pure white flowers all over them just like the regular Neofinetia falcatas. Easy to grow and an all weather type of plant, try to run one down that is all green if you like the coconut fragrance!

Any persons with internet access can request a color copy of these as I have jpeg copies available and can e-mail them to you, or, visit our San Diego County Orchid Society Home Page at and see them in full color!!

SDCOS Board of Directors Meeting
June 9, 1998
- Submitted by Siv Garrod

Present: Fred Weber, Leno Galvan, Edith Galvan, Ben Machado, Esther Sivila, Ann Tuskes, Alma Marosz and Siv Garrod.

Meeting called to order by Ann Tuskes at 7:10 P.M.


1. Last meetings minutes were read and approved.
2. Treasurer report was read, accepted and filed for audit.
4. First Vice President - Francisco Miranda from Miranda's Orchids in Brazil will talk about Orchids of Brazil and also provide the plant table.
5. Second Vice president - Chris Herndon will discuss growing orchids under light.
6. Show Chairman - Next show meeting is August 18, 1998. Anyone withshow is an interest in the big welcome to attend. If any members have ideasto attend! or suggestions this is the show meeting


1. Alma Marosz - The AOS pamphlets that were ordered by the members and not picked up at the meeting will be mailed this week. Members that did not order the pamphlets can pick from those remaining books at the beginning of the next meeting . During the break any books left will be sold to members that would like to have additional copies.


1. Fred Weber - The society has an old PA System in storage that has not been used in may years. The motion was made to donate the system, as is, to another society. The motion was seconded and no one opposed.

The meeting was adjourned 7:50 P.M.

Speaking of Mini Shows -
by Harry, Editor

The next mini show is scheduled for the 17th, 18th and 19th of July. Bring plants and donations for sales Friday night from 6 to 8 P.M. and Saturday morning from 7 to 9:30. The judging is then done and the show opens to the public in the park about 11 or 12 o’clock. The rest of the day until 5 we are open for viewing, and Sunday from 10 A.M. till 4 P.M., then the show breaks
down and all plants should be removed by 5 P.M.

This show is primarily for show and tell of our plants with the general public who just happens to be wandering thru the park on those days and comes across the orchid show. We always earn a few new members on those days and need a few more volunteers to help set up, judge and/or roam the floor answering questions. We also need persons to man the corsage booth making fine corsages for sale, for selling Tee shirts and Sweats, for selling posters, and / or for selling the many and varied plants that have been donated for the sales booth. The plant sales booth is a fast a furious place Saturday morning.

Please bring any excess plants you have, or if you can’t come down and have quite a few call me the week before and I will try to come pick them up and take them for you. These donations are tax deductible and you can request a receipt from our Treasurer &/or President.

If you would like to know a little more about how these things are run, show up early Saturday morning and ask Fred Weber how to help out. Have a doughnut, a cup of coffee and enjoy the day showing off our orchids. It’s easy, and it’s fun!

March 1999 Show Theme
by Harry, Editor

The next two months Bud Close will be accepting ideas for the Show Theme for next year. If you can think of a title for our annual show in Mission Valley at the Scottish Rite Temple please send it to Bud or Fred for discussion at the Show Meeting.

Last years show was called “Jungle Gems”, the year before was “Orchids Ole’” and the year before that the theme was the “50th Anniversary” show. So put on your thinking cap and some up with something unique for us!!

As always, there is a reward for whoever suggests the theme selected by the show committee!!!

Incidentally, who IS the show committee?? It’s YOU, if you want it to be! At least you can get your two cents worth in. All you have to do is show up on the third Tuesday of the month and get your two cents worth in. None of the things the show committee does is done without thought and much discussion! Some of the funner meetings I’ve been to are these meetings. Obviously there are lots of ways to run a show, the committee listens to all suggestions, discusses the pros and cons, and takes a vote for the final direction of each suggestion. Everyone there gets to vote. July and August will be very formative for next years show with the accent on the August meeting as the final and most important. Come on down and be a part of it. The meetings are held in the Senior Citizens Room right across the quad from the General Meeting only on the third Tuesday of every month.

Viejas Outlet Center -
by Harry, Editor

Patricia and I spent a day out there going thru the various stores. The whole thing is designed well, layed out well, interesting architecture and handling of the various ponds, fountains, rocks, timber, statures, etc. A very peaceful and interesting place to hang around. Of course the Casino is across the street if you get bored, but this place alone can keep you entertained for a day. The London Fog store has many jackets at 1/2 the usual store prices. Black & Decker store has every Black & Decker product imaginable. Not only the craftsman will enjoy this store, but the homemakers as well. They have a considerable variety of kitchen appliances and aids as well.

Two other stores featured only kitchen related stuff, lots of dress shops, a Corning Outlet with great prices and stock, shoes stores including a Nike gigantic place, a Samsonite store, nutrition stores, leather products, just a ton of interesting stuff, over 30 outlets in all.

The funnest thing I’m sure you and kids of all ages will enjoy is the fountain area of the Center. They call it the Nightfire Show Court. There is a continual fountain display here all day long, with visiting kids playing a big part in the entertainment. Take your little guys some clothes and shoes you don’t care if they get wet! They start out looking like they don’t want to, but soon they can’t get wet enough! The transition IS entertainment for the grown-ups! There is a water show “Water Songs” at 5, 6, 7, and 8 P.M. Then a “complete” water show at 8:30 Monday thru Sat, 8:00 P.M. Sunday. Then, as if that wasn’t enough, “ “The Legend of Nightfire”, a dramatic fire, water, laser and pyrotechnic extravaganza at 9:05 Monday thru Saturday and 8:30 P.M. Sunday”. Believe me, extravaganza is an understatement!

There is another big grassy area they call the Viejas Park that has special events all week long and you can pick up a events schedule when you get there. Like the Black & Decker Handyman Olympics guys, that ought to be a good one eh? There are balloon makers for the kids most days from 12 to 4 P.M. Took us 35 minutes to get there from Chula Vista.

July 7th, 1998 - 7:30 PM - Casa Del Prado - Room 101

By Ben Machado, 1st VP

Our guest speaker for this month is Francisco Miranda of Miranda Orchids, Brazil. His presentation is titled "Orchids from the Brazilian Amazon" a subject of which he has made an extensive life long study. He has several publications to his credit all about Brazilian Orchids. His publications place emphasis on Laelias and of course they are depicted in their natural habitat. Any one of his publications deserves a prominent spot on the coffee table.

Our presentation will include a myriad of the Brazilian Orchids with scenery from their growing environment. Francisco will also provide plants for our Plant Opportunity Table to include mostly Cattleyas and Cattleya hybrids.

Francisco Miranda
Francisco E. L. F. de Miranda was born in Rio de Janeiro on February 6,1956. He has been growing orchids since 1979, the same year he got his degree in Biology, and begun his taxonomic studies in the orchid family in 1981. During this year, he lived from march to November in the city of Manaus, state of Amazonas, in the middle of the Amazon region. During 1982, back in Rio de Janeiro, He began field trips to Minas Gerais and Espírito Santo, mainly to try to find rupiculous Laelia species in their natural habitats. Between 1993 and mid 1985, Francisco went back to Manaus, where he began his Master's degree and also made extensive field trips to Rondonia and the area of the future dam of Tucuruí, in the state of Pará.

From the hundreds of herbarium specimens prepared, many new species were described in subsequent years, mostly in Catasetum and Mormodes. Since mid 1995, Francisco finished his Master's degree and his thesis was "section Cattleyodes of the genus Laelia" and continued to make frequent field trips to the habitats of the Brazilian laelias. All these years of orchid hunting have resulted in many new species described, as already said, and two books, the first one published in Japan, from which he wrote about one third of it including orchids from the eastern coast of Brazil plus Central region and mountains of Minas Gerais and Bahia states. The second one was finished the
year of 1996 and the subject are the orchids of the Brazilian Amazon region. These two books are not taxonomic treatments, but instead illustrated guides on very interesting Brazilian areas.

Finally, since 1988, the author has been going at least once a year to the United States with the main purpose of giving lectures to orchid societies on several different subjects on Brazilian orchids. Since 1986 he has an orchid nursery in Rio de Janeiro, Orquidário Boa Vista, specializing in producing superior cultivars of Brazilian orchid species.

by Harry, Editor

If you haven’t done so already please send a check for the amount shown on page 31 of this newsletter to Vivian Follmer for your ‘’98-’99 membership in this society. $10 individual and $12.50 for two people living at the same address. I hope I don’t have to remind you what a good deal this is but here goes anyway. Every meeting, free coffee and donuts! Every March, a free catered meal at the awards banquet. Every December a free plant is given to every member who shows up at the December party. And, this last fiscal year we gave FREE,,, to any member with brains ,enough to order one,,, a free book from the American Orchid Society!! Add all that up and the great time you have with others trapped in the same hobby and you have a colossal deal.