August 2000

New! Check out past editions here.


August 1, 2000 - 6:30 PM

Duncan Werth, 2nd Vice President

Everyone who went to July’s Novice Class enjoyed the great presentation on mounting orchids by local grower Tom Biggart. Tom demonstrated how to "tie one on". We found out that branches from cork oak and Brazilian pepper trees (to name a couple) are good mounts for orchids. A lucky member even got to take home a Cattleya she mounted herself! Thank you, Tom, for your fun and informative talk.

The Society will host a "Plant Clinic" at this month’s Novice Class. Simply bring in any plants that have strange markings and or pests that you are unfamiliar with, and we will try to give tentative identifications of the pests or pathogens involved and how to treat the problem. Feel free to bring in any plant that you have had a difficult time growing successfully and we will try to elucidate what cultural requirements are not being met. ALL PLANTS, LEAVES, ETC. MUST BE BROUGHT IN A PLASTIC BAG IN ORDER TO PREVENT ANY PESTS OR DISEASES FROM CROSS-CONTAMINATING OTHER PLANTS.

Experienced and veteran growers are invited to help with the "diagnosis" of the plants. Hope to see you all with your plants.


August 1, 2000 - 7:30 PM - CASA DEL PRADO - ROOM 102 - (not Room 101 due to construction.)

G’day All,  

As your newly installed 1st Veep, the task of providing informational  speakers, plant tables and holiday entertainment has fallen on these  shoulders. I hope that they are broad enough to carry the load. I’ll try!!  

I would be remiss if I did not mention the debt of gratitude that the society owes Ben Machado (Susie helped too). They both have labored tirelessly, over  the past three years, to provide the society with a wide array of  knowledgeable and personable speakers to grace our podium; with considerable  success I might add!! The next time you see them you might go a little out  of your way and shake their hands, while conveying a "job well done!!" They  certainly deserve the recognition.  

Now to the business at hand. Our speaker for the August 2000 meeting will be Norito Hasagawa. To many members of the society, Norito  needs no introduction. He has provided us with memorable presentations in the  past covering the current state of his favorite subject , "da slipper  orchids."   Norito is co-owner (along with Harold Koopowitz) of Paphanatics, an accredited AOS Judge  with cross qualifications as a CSA (Cymbidium Society of America) Judge. He is a former trustee of The American Orchid Society and currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Orchid Digest Corporation. He travels internationally to keep orchid fanatics up to date on Paphiopedilum happenings. Norito will be furnishing  the plant table. Look for some "state of the art" Paphs.  

If those qualifications don’t impress you—you are un-impressable!! Even if  unimpressed, come anyway!! Norito is a heck of a guy and a veritable  font of orchid knowledge.  

I will end this with a plea!! If any of you have suggestions for speakers, orchid genera that you would like to see featured, plants you would  like to see on the plant table or ideas about the entertainment you would  like to have at the holiday dinner - SPEAK UP - or forever hold your peace!!  

The new 1st Veep, 


Note: Until we return to our usual meeting room #101 please DO NOT bring plants for show to the meeting. There just isn’t enough space. Hopefully we’ll be back by the September meeting but you will find out right here. Thanks

Members and Advertisers

If you have monthly meetings or announcements related to orchids, make sure the information gets to the Editor by the Second Tuesday of each month for publishing in the next issue of this newsletter. To contribute articles or to advertise your orchid-related business, please contact Rebecca Lawrence, Editor, 820 Ocean Crest, Cardiff, CA 92007, Phone: 760-943-8860 or E-mail: .

Important - Read This!

The United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) has proposed new enforcement of regulations which, if passed, will affect every one of us who grows orchids, whether for pleasure or as a business.

According to these new regulations, "the possession and domestic or international trade of illegally imported specimens ... is prohibited." Also, "... any offspring of illegal specimens are also considered illegal." Proof of legality, [the burden of which is explicitly stated to lie with the grower], must include, "clear records that each specimen was legally acquired, including a record of the history of ownership, copies of cleared CITIES documents, and records of parental or founder stock for specimens bred or propagated in the US."

Most of us already know and accept that it is illegal to import from outside the U.S. orchids without proper permits. However, this new wording also means that it will be 1) illegal to—even unknowingly—possess an orchid for which you do not have complete paper records of the entire history of its ownership, from the time it first entered the country, possibly decades ago. According to these new regs, possessing even a hybrid orchid will be illegal unless you had complete paperwork on both its parents (and if that was a hybrid, then ITS parents, and so on, and so on.)

For those of us who have been growing orchids for many years, or those new growers who buy an orchid at a plant table, from a vendor at a show, or trade divisions with friends, the obvious question becomes: How do I document that a plant was in fact legally acquired ?

Here are some of the problems…

1. Before the early 1980’s, when the U.S. signed on to the CITES treaty [CITES = the Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species], hundreds of thousands of orchid plants were imported – perfectly legally - into the US and used for breeding to produce both species and hybrid offspring. None of those plants would have CITES documentation, as CITES did not even exist then. How could I prove that my plant came in before CITES, so I do not need CITES documentation?

2. After CITES went into effect, most orchid plants brought into the country were required to have a CITES export permit documentation from the country of origin. [ Some required BOTH an export permit AND a U.S. import permit]. This permit would meet the proof of legality requirements, except…the inspector at the port of entry generally keeps the CITES documents, leaving the grower/importer with no documents! Those of us who have imported orchids know that all CITES paperwork generally stays with the inspector (unless you had ESP and had the foresight to request that they make a copy for you), and is not released with the plants. Further, flasks of seedlings are already specifically exempt from CITES documentation, thus CITES documents never existed for those plants or their progeny. How do I come up with a document for a plant that grew from a flask that did not require a permit in the first place?

3. Many of us have informally traded divisions of legally acquired plants among friends, won plants at raffle tables, been given plants by neighbors to nurse back to health, or bought plants from the estate of a deceased grower. Some of them may turn out to be very desirable plants, worth propagating. Yet, they are without CITES documentation, there’s no paper trail. If these new regulations go into effect, no grower in their right mind would undertake to multiply and distribute them. Without documentation, the new owner/grower would be at risk of possessing ‘illegal plants’, and could have that plant, and all its progeny, confiscated.

Supposedly, these new regulations are intended to protect orchids. On the contrary, the proposed regulations will:

· damage any commercial attempt to reduce pressures to illegally collect in the wild. In other words, if growers are not willing to risk propagating an undocumented plant, the quantity and quality of artificially propagated plants will plummet. Fewer and fewer propagated plants will be available as seedlings, or as meristems. This will encourage MORE collection from the wild to meet the demand for orchids.

· largely destroy the orchid hobby and orchid commerce as we know it today. Since it is illegal to possess a plant without full documentation, swaps, plant tables, raffles, orchid fairs, shopping local vendors, buying by mail, and catalog shopping, will grind to a halt.

What can we do ?



1. Copy and send the letter on the next page to Ms. Saito of the USFWS. Even better, rewrite it on your own stationery if possible.

2. Copy and send the letter to your Congressman. You can find out who your Congressman is by looking in the yellow pages, p. 24 of the San Diego book or page 22 of the North County book.

Where can we get more information ?

Visit the American Orchid Society home page at Society home page at .

SAMPLE LETTER -- Sign your name, and mail to the address shown below before August 7, 2000 -- so your voice is heard on this important issue!! Copy and paste this to your word processor and print!


Ms. Teiko Saito,
Chief, Office of Management Authority
United States Fish and Wildlife Service
4401 North Fairfax Drive, Room 700
Arlington, VA 22203

August 1, 2000

Dear Ms. Saito:

I disapprove of the proposed changes in CITES enforcement procedures that are proposed by the USFWS.

The proposed changes will, I believe, result in highly undesirable consequences. They will:

1. Stifle artificial propagation of orchid species, thereby increasing pressure on wild populations due to illegal collecting.

2. Require from commercial and hobby growers alike a level of documentation that will be impossible to effect.

3. Adversely regulate the professional orchid growing community to such an extent that many nurseries will be unable to survive financially. This is of particular interest to us here in San Diego County, which is an area particularly suited to the growth of orchids.

4. Reduce the availability of orchid species to orchid hobbyists such as myself who act as important reservoirs of important species which have little commercial value and which are critically endangered due to habitat destruction.

5. Make criminals of most hobby and commercial orchid growers who have plants without any documentation and no means of obtaining it.

At the very least, please extend the commentary period beyond August 7, 2000, so that further input can be brought to bear on this important issue. I do believe that it is important to protect orchids in the wild and to conserve them and I do believe it is possible for CITES to play an important role in this protection. However, the proposed changes will certainly not accomplish this.

Thank you for your consideration.



Member, San Diego County Orchid Society

To Do Orchid Checklist: July/August

Cattleya Cattleyas this month require careful attention to their watering and fertilizing needs owing to characteristically high temperatures. Evaporative cooling is a must in areas of the country where it is effective. Where it is not (the more humid regions), care needs to be paid to proper venting to keep temperatures within reason. Bottom vents in conjunction with top vents provide enough rising airflow to help keep plants cool. Increased air flow lessens humidity and dries plants out more quickly, necessitating more frequent damping down and watering, in areas where high humidity is not a problem.

Higher light and heat indicate more fertilizer. The growths your plants are making now are the source of this autumn, winter and spring’s blooms, so applying adequate fertilizer this month is the best way to ensure future blooms. Higher temperatures and humidity may also lead to fungal or bacterial rot problems, so it is important to closely observe your plants for any early indication of problems. Pests are also at a high point this month for the same reason.

Paphiopedilum Cooling and air circulation are especially critical in these two months to prevent stress and avoid disease problems. Watering needs to be closely monitored to ensure that plants do not dry out. Warmer-growing hybrids will be at the peak of their blooming, with attention needing to be paid to staking of spikes. Look for water lodging in growths, which can rot emerging spikes and lead to the loss of the entire growth.

Phalaenopsis Most, if not all, potting should be complete by now. This month and next are when these plants achieve their maximum growth. This growth will be that from which they set their spikes for the coming season. The more leaves the plants grow, the better potential for spiking will be realized. Growers in cooler areas such as the Pacific coast have the advantage this month, should they choose, of cooling for early season spikes. Lots of heat and light call for liberal applications of water and fertilizer.

Cymbidium Summer can be the most rewarding season for cymbidiums. Growths should be coming strong now. The leaves of the new growths are best when they are broad and fairly stiff. The color should be a light green to nearly yellow. Early flowering varieties should be showing flower spikes, so move the plants into a cooler area with lower light. For mid-season varieties, lower the dosage of nitrogen to assist in spike initiation.

High-elevation Plants For cooler-growing plants, such as masdevallias, other pleurothallids and the like, the next few months will be a challenge. During the hottest times, keep your plants more shaded and be sure to keep the humidity level much higher. Do not let plants dry out. Delay any potting until the weather cools.

Laelia purpurata The flowering season of this majestic plant will be coming to an end, presenting a good time to report. As soon as the new roots start to appear, clean off old bark and repot into a clean medium- grade fir bark. Place the plant in a little less light and higher humidity to relieve stress until it is more established, which is about one month after potting..

Odontocidium Many of the intergeneric crosses between odontoglossums and oncidiums, such as Odontocidium, Wilsonara and Colmanara, will be blooming now. Take special care to train the spikes for best floral display. Keep plants under fairly shady conditions. Watch for snails and slugs.

Vandaceous genera plants will be growing quickly now and really enjoying the hot humid days so similar to their native habitat. Watch for pests though, as many of these also enjoy the same conditions as the plants. Check flower spikes so that they can extend unimpeded for the best flower presentation later.

Prepared by James Rose and Ned Nash

Copyright 1999 American Orchid Society. All rights reserved.

SDCOS Board of Directors Meeting

July 11, 2000.

Meeting called to order at 19:02

Present: Fred Weber, Edith Galvan, Duncan Werth, Gary Pierwola, Bud Close, Ben Machado, Peter Tobias, Alma Marosz, Genie Hammond, Leno Galvan, Sam DeMaria, Loren Batchman, Barbie Mays, Dave Mays. and Siv Garrod.


1. Last meeting’s minutes were read, and approved by motion.

2. Treasurers - Edith Galvan and Barbie Mays - Report for June was presented and filed for audit. Union Tribune refunded money from our advertisement cost, due us as a non-profit organization.

3. First vice president - George Kenner - The speaker for the August meeting is Norito Hasegawa. He will discuss paphiopedilums and provide plants for the raffle.

4. Second vice president - Duncan Werth - There will be a "Plant Clinic" instead of a Novice class.

5. Show Co-Chairman - Bud Close - Resigned from the position.


1. A permanent by-law committee has been formed. The chair is Paul Tuskes. The board approved that the Chair will appoint members with the board’s approval.


1. The Board approved the election of Loren Batchman as Director 2002, and Ben Machado as Director 2001

2. The Conservation Committee received a proposal from Eric Christenson regarding a request for funds to purchase orchid books for a University in Peru. This proposal was submitted to the Garner Foundation Committee for their consideration.

3. Alma Marosz suggested that we have classes in corsage making. Two classes will be given at the next mini show, one on a Saturday morning and one on Sunday afternoon to be held at the corsage table.

4. The AOS Orchid Source Directory made a mistake erroneously naming Cindy Hill as the SDCOS AOS representative. Siv will try to have this corrected since the secretary is the AOS representative.

5. The suggested changes in CITES for USA are not welcomed by orchid growers. Ned Nash has an article about this on the AOS web page. Peter Tobias offered to write an article for our newsletter about the CITES changes and how they will affect us.

Meeting adjourned 19:41

Submitted by Siv Garrod

Masdevallia Cultivation


Masdevallias have earned a reputation as hard to grow. Most species are easily cultivated though, if provided the conditions that are important to the species considered. With a genus numbering more than 425 species there is considerable variation in the habitat and usually these conditions must be met, or approached, to achieve success. The willingness of a grower to expend/allocate money and space is proportional to the success achieved with many members of this wonderful genus.

Outlined below are the reasons, in descending order of importance, that I believe are important for successful cultivation and bloom.


Many masdevallia species are highly endemic and some species are considered refractory if habitat conditions aren’t closely met. Most species of masdevallia will do well in an environment that varies considerably from that of the habitat if minimum night time temperatures are approached or met. Temperatures in great excess (10-12°F) of habitat maximum temperatures must be accompanied by increased humidity to reduce transpiration and maintenance of plant turgor. Periods of excessive temperatures impede the plants’ ability to function normally and lack of a night-time respite will soon become fatal. Symptoms of excessive temperatures are dry aborted growths, pleated growths, and premature drop of mature leaves. As the leaves of masdevallia are in most cases perennial, loss of leaves younger than two years old signify plant stress and some conditions must immediately be ameliorated. A fungal infection is similarly manifested, unfortunately. Close scrutiny and review of ambient diurnal temperatures is necessary to determine cause of uncharacteristic leaf drop. Fungal infections most often occur in the cooler months and leaf drop in months other than that most often signify excessive temperatures.


Most masdevallia species are found in areas in which Relative Humidity is high (65-80%, or more) and are intolerant of extended periods of low RH. Appropriate humidity is a necessary buffer against excessive temperatures and protects the plant against excessive water loss and reduced plant turgor.


Masdevallias dislike stagnant air and will show their resentment by chronic bacterial infections. Many of the species have inflated leaf sheaths in which water can collect and provide a habitat for pathogenic bacteria. Air movement should be vigorous enough to cause some leaf movement.


Inappropriate light levels most often affect blooming, but too little light will often cause weak, soft and flaccid growths that are more susceptible to disease. Leaf thickness and shape is often a good indicator of light requirements. Thick, heavy leaves are an indication of high light requirements while thin, lance shaped leaves are usually an indication of low light species.


A large variety of composts are used for masdevallias. The most important criteria is that it drain quickly but remain moisture. Live sphagnum moss seems to invigorate masdevallias and is a good indicator of water quality. Masdevallias respond well to yearly repotting.

By Dale Borders

copyright 6/2000

reprinted from Orchid Safari


The SDCOS offers this service to members who seek cultural information about their orchids. Here are some friendly hobbyists with a great deal of experience about certain types of orchids, and who have kindly volunteered to answer your questions.

Cattleyas, Oncidium/Odontoglossums, Vandaceous, Greenhouse grown, West SD County

Forrest Robinson - (619) 270-6105

Species, all types, Indoor and Outdoor

Ann & Paul Tuskes – (858) 274-5829


Ann Tuskes - (858) 274-5829

Bob Hodges - (619) 461-4915,

Phalaenopsis, Cattleyas and Dendrobiums

Alma Marosz – (619) 583-0334

Vandas, Ascocendas

Edith and Leno Galvan - (619) 441-7503

Encyclias, Epidendrums, Laelias

Tom Osborn - (760) 787-0282


Don van Kekerix - (619) 224-4938


Loren Batchman -

Sam DeMaria - (619) 295-2951

Northeast County, all types

Dave Reid - (760) 728-7996

San Diego West County, all types

Jean Beck - (619) 435-8211

San Diego Central, Outdoor, all types

Jim Wright - (619) 276-5295

Fred Tomaschke - (619) 276-3225

San Diego East County, all types

James Masst – (619) 443-2800

Bud Close – (619) 444-8839

South County all types

Genie Hammond -- (619) 426-6831

Ed Marty – (619) 470-7175




Photography İGreg Allikas