Growing Orchids in the Middle of a Drought presented September 7, 2022 7:00 pm by Donna Ballard

Donna is a native Californian, is studying to become an American Orchid Society judge, and hopes to earn her accreditation soon. After over 30 years of loving, caring for and studying plants, she went on to work as a professional interior house plant maintenance technician until 4 years ago. She has since retired and works as a part time volunteer at the Huntington Botanical Gardens Thornton Estate Orchid Conservatory in San Marino.
She currently has approximately 420 sq feet of greenhouse, shade house and interior growing areas where she has over 1300 Cattleyas, Paphiopedilums, Cymbidiums, Dendrobiums, Sarcochilus, miniature Vanda and novelty Phalaenopsis orchids as well as several other genera. She grows award winning orchids as we show here. The information she shares with us may also help you grow award winning plants.

By Arthur Pinkers Posted in Meetings

Jensoa Cymbidiums Presented by Ken Jacobsen

Presented by Ken Jacobsen

Ken was first introduced to orchids by his uncle in the 1960’s and has been growing orchids for well over 50 years.  His collection includes Cymbidiums, Oncidiums, Odontoglossums, Lycastes, Cattleyas, Laelias, Masdevallias and several other genera.  Ken and his wife, Amy, enjoy travelling to all areas of the world w here orchids are grown, visiting the local growers, and seeing various species in the wild.  Together, Amy and Ken have over 7000 orchids. 

Ken is a judge in the AOS judging program, was a judge in the CSA judging program, and is a past AOS trustee

The Jensoa group of Cymbidiums is a delightful group that have small foot prints and wonderful displays of small flowers that can be very striking.

Please Join us for our in person meeting at the Sepulveda Garden Center

By Arthur Pinkers Posted in Meetings

San Fernando Valley Orchid Society Will Resume Face to Face Meetings May 4, 2022

The San Fernando Valley Orchid Society will resume Face to Face meetings May 4, 2022 at 7:00 pm at the Sepulveda Garden Center, 16633 Magnolia Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 91436. Our featured speaker will be Carol Beule presenting a talk on the genus Sarcochilus, a very delightful genus from australia that provides a lot of flower on a very small foot print in a very wide range of colors and patterns. We hope to see you there.

Face to Face San Fernando Valley Orchid Society Meetings Not Permitted Yet.

The current health directives are not permitting the Sepulveda Garden Center to allow face to face meetings at this time.  The San Fernando Valley Orchid Society is meeting via Zoom the first Wednesday of the Month.  If you would like to attend, please email Arthur Pinkers at  We would like to have you join us for the meeting.

By Arthur Pinkers Posted in Meetings

April 1, 2020 Meeting/ Action Cancelled Due to Building Closure

Due to the Coronavirus, mandates from the CDC, State and County Health organization and the City of LA, we have been advised that the Sepulveda Garden Center has been closed.  We hope to meet in May but the health and safety of our members are paramount so we will follow the directives.  If you have further questions, you can send an email to for more up to date information.  The San Fernando Valley Orchid Society Board of Directors meet to determine when our auction will be held.  We thank you for your patience and hope you all will stay in good health and enjoy the beauty of your orchid plants.

By Arthur Pinkers Posted in Meetings

Meeting on March 4, 2020 Brassia, The species, it’s hybrids and uses in Hybridization Presented by Robert Moffitt

Brassia’s are known as the spider orchid.  They present large stately presentations of large flowers from the Oncidium family.  They are relatively easy growers in our region and add size and nice presentations to their hybrids.  

Robert  was born and raised in Eagle Rock, CA.  He earned a Bachelor of Arts in Biology from Occidental College and then a Master of Science in Zoology from the University of Hawaii.  He is a retired Fisheries Biologist from the National Marine Fisheries Service (NOAA) in Honolulu where he specialized in deep water benthic fish, crustaceans, and mollusks.

He received his first orchid from his then future father-in-law in the early 1970s.  He joined the Honolulu Orchid Society since the mid 1970s where he is a life member.  He is also a life member of the American Orchid Society.  He is an accredited judge of both American Orchid Society and Honolulu Orchid Society

By Arthur Pinkers Posted in Meetings

February 8, 2020 – Orchids of Southern China Presented by Steve Hampson

Through recent travels in Southern China, Steve gives us a look at a group of unique and wonderful orchids only recently becoming known in the US.  The insight into their native environment will help us provide the conditions they need to grow successfully.

Steve grew up in New York and was educated at the University of Delaware and then received a Masters degree in Horticulture at Penn State. After a stint running an apple orchard and plant nursery in   Pennsylvania, he settled in Southern California. He is senior horticulturist at the famed Roger’s Gardens in Newport Beach where he is a well known and popular lecturer. He has a reputation for being very knowledgeable on sweet peas, water lilies, dahlias and daffodils as well as orchids. He is very fond of the pleurothallid alliance and grows a large collection of those species.

By Arthur Pinkers Posted in Meetings

“The Three Most Important Words An AOS Judge Can Say Are..” Presented by Douglas Overstreet


January 8, 2020

DOUGLAS OVERSTREET has grown orchids continually since he was 10 years old. He comes by his interest in plants and animals naturally.  His family have been American farmers since 1684.  The first orchid he purchased in 1972 was Cattleya Trimos, a primary hybrid between C. trianaei and C. mossiae.  The first orchid he flowered was a phalaenopsis hybrid.

Doug moved to California in 1975 and continued his love affair with orchids. In 1984, his collection began to grow by leaps and bounds with his first professional job.  He also became a very active participant in the local orchid community.  He began to work with orchids professionally in 2000 as a private consultant.  Gradually, this became his full-time occupation. He has managed private collections for leading hobbyists in Southern California for the last 15 years. He is an Accredited American Orchid Society Judge in the Pacific South Region.  An accomplished writer and educator, Doug has written articles for many different publications including Orchid Digest and has served on the Editorial Committee of that publication as Assistant Editor.  He has spoken for orchid societies and other groups nationwide.  Prior to joining the Huntington full time as a horticulturist, he was a frequent guest lecturer for the Huntington.  Currently, he is the orchid specialist in charge of the Thornton Conservatory and the Ernest Hetherington Memorial Cattleya Collection.

By Arthur Pinkers Posted in Meetings

March 1, 2017: Tim Culbertson on Maudiae Type Paphs

Left: Paph. Maudiae ‘Bankhouse’ AM-AOS

March 1 st: Paphiopedilum Maudiae Hybrids Speaker: Tim Culbertson

Although I teach middle school kids for a living, one of my passions has always been plants. I began growing orchids as an offshoot from working at Longwood Gardens in Philadelphia just after college. From the very beginning it was all about Paphs, particularly awarded and selected clones of historic importance, of which my collection numbers nearly 3000. While I love finding old, rare stepping stones in Paph. breeding, I also do a little hybridizing of my own, and growing up my own babies is a blast. I am the youngest accredited judge with the American Orchid Society, and have served in various capacities with various orchid societies in California and on the East Coast. I love meeting other people who like orchids too, and doing so often finds me traveling to shows, vendors, and peoples’ greenhouses to see the latest and greatest in new hybrids and to get the best orchid gossip. I like to be involved in plants as much as possible: in addition to Longwood, I’ve worked at the Smithsonian Institution tending to their orchids, and for years for the United States National Arboretum, collecting rare plants and documenting cultivated species and hybrids for their herbarium. In short, I really like plants. For your meeting, I’ll be sharing a presentation on Maudiae-type Paphs. These plants are easy to grow and flower, are vigorous, and have low demands on light and fertilizer, and as such are wonderful plants! Tremendous advancements in breeding Maudiae-type Paphs have been made recently, and I will share some of these with you, as well as help identify some of the important species in the backgrounds of historically important and modern Maudiae-type Paphs. By the end of this presentation, you will have a new appreciation of what goes into breeding trends for these types of plants, as well as an appreciation of their beautiful flowers and ease-of-growth. I will be providing a plant table of the newest, modern, cutting-edge Maudiae-Paph-style breeding, with both blooming and un-bloomed plants.


Photograph Right: Maudiae ‘Gen X’ AM-AOS