Peter Lin “12 Months of Orchids” talk at the SFVOS

12 Months of Orchids – Building a collection with blooms every month of the year.

At our next regular meeting at the San Fernando Valley Orchid Society, on January 7th at 7:00 pm,  Peter Lin will be presenting his newest talk on “12 Months of Orchids”.  This fast paced PowerPoint presentation will show you how to build an orchid collection to have blooming plants for each month of the year.

Peter started growing orchids over 30 years ago, but then stopped due to school and starting a career.  It wasn’t until about 11 years ago that the orchid “bug” came back and he is now heavily involved once again.  He is an accredited judge with the American Orchid Society and a hybridizer of mini-catts.  He enjoys meeting with other orchid enthusiasts, and can often be found at various orchid shows and societies around the country.  He also has hundreds of photos of his orchids that he maintains on Flickr.  You can view them by typing this address into the internet: http://www.flickr.com/photos/minicatt/collections/

Due to limited growing space, Peter likes to specialize in miniature orchids, both species and hybrids, and has received numerous AOS awards.  His other interests in orchids include Dendrobiums, Angraecoids, and Neofinetias.  He maintains a collection of a thousand or more orchids at his home in Southern California in 3 small greenhouses, as well as an offsite greenhouse.

Don’t forget to bring a notepad and a pen.  You just might want to take notes.

Have a safe and Happy New Year!

 

 

 

James Rose on “The Laelias of Mexico” – November 5, 2014

We are very fortunate to have James Rose of Cal-Orchid, Santa Barbara. Mr. Rose will give us a talk on the ‘Laelias of Mexico’. . James lecture will deal mostly with the variability of the many flowers and the habitats and conditions from which they grow. Hopefully, we can all share some knowledge in the wonderful world of Orchids. Cal-Orchid also will provide plants for our Plant Opportunity Table (POT)

James attended University of California, Santa Barbara as an anthropology major.  In 1971 he began working at Santa Barbara Orchid Estate. After 16 years there, and becoming manager, he left to establish his own nursery with his wife, Lauris.  In 1987 they purchased Orchids By Rowe, a 2 acre cymbidium nursery 2 blocks from the Pacific Ocean in 1987, and totally redesigned the former cymbidium cut flower range to what is now a world re-known orchid nursery providing one of the largest varieties of orchid species and hybrids in the U.S.

Cal-Orchid maintains an active breeding program and stud collection built upon decades of international travel.  James is very well known for having a distinctively selective ‘eye’ for the new unusual plant, and Cal-Orchid’s new and long-time customers enjoy reaping the benefits. The nursery’s inventory features the Cattleya, Cymbidium, Odontoglossum, Masdevallia,  Lycaste, Paphiopedilum alliances as well as a good assortment of African species. James and Lauris have become recognized for their superior ‘Pacific’ line of reedstem Epidendrums, which have evolved over 12 years of selective breeding and have garnered awards around the world.

James has published in the AOS, Orchid Digest, and CSA magazines, and is well respected for his vast knowledge as well as his distinctive sense of humor. He lectures all over the world at orchid shows and World Orchid Conferences. He is a Cymbidium Society of America Judge, former member of the AOS Conservation Committee, and active member of the Japan Grand Prix Organizing committee where he has judged every year at the world famous Tokyo Dome. Don’t miss this opportunity to learn about Laelias and hear this excellent speaker.

Dr. Daniel L. Geiger, Ph.D. to speak at the SFVOS on October 1st

Oberonia under the microscope

Please join us Wednesday, October 1st at the Sepulveda Garden center to hear Dr. Geiger’s talk and watch his PowerPoint presentation on this interesting subject.
Oberonia is a literally and figuratively overlooked genus of orchids with minute flowers. Daniel has become interested in this genus with some 150-300 species. An overview of the genus is provided, including many never seen before images taken with light and scanning electron microscopes. Most specimens available in the trade are misidentified; the process of checking the identification of a plant is detailed. Approaches to experimental culture of oddball orchids rounds out the presentation. This may be particularly interesting to growers who want to expand into under-appreciated orchids, or may be tempted with small research projects.

Dr. Daniel L. Geiger is Curator of Malacology (mollusks) at the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History, where he also oversees the electron microscopy facility. As a hobby orchid grower, he specializes in Oberonia and Hippeophyllum, which are grown in two terraria and a small greenhouse. Due to his botanical interest, he also holds an appointment as a Visiting Research Scholar at the Huntington Botanical Garden. He has written a number or articles for AOS Orchids and the Orchid Digest, and received an AOS exhibit award for a display on Oberonia. For further information please see www.vetigastropoda.com

Orchids of the Shan Plateau will be presented by Winn Winmaw 7/2/14

This month’s speaker is none other than Newport Orchid Society member Winn Winmaw.  Winn and his wife, Chitsaya, are on the Board of Directors for the NHOS.  Winn was born in Shan State, Eastern Burma, where Cymbidiums, Vandas, Dendrobiums and Paphiopedilums are found abundantly in the wild.  Winn began collecting orchids at the age of 7 and has been fascinated with them ever since.

As an undergraduate of physics at the University of Rangoon, Winn was a member of the Department of Botany’s Orchid Society.  Winn also lived in Japan for four years for further study and training.  He moved to the United States in 1998 and settled in Orange County.

Winn recently made several trips back to Burma to study orchids in their native habitat.  He made an expedition to the Shan Plateau, which will be the subject of his talk on Wednesday night.   Winn will talk about his adventurous and treacherous journey and bring us photographs of the orchids he encountered along the way.   Don’t miss this exciting presentation at the San Fernando Valley Orchid Society’s next regular meeting on July 2nd, 2014 at 7:00 pm.

June 4th SFVOS Meeting Topic “Preventing Orchid Pests and Disease”

Our next meeting for the San Fernando Valley Orchid Society will be on Wednesday,  June 4th, 2014 at 7:00 pm.   Our very own Pamela Aitchison will be our speaker for our June meeting.  Pam is a Certified Master Gardener from the University of California and has been for many years.  She is regular guest lecturer at California State University at Northridge (CSUN), and is also a mentor and trainer for the new class of Master Gardener interns each year.   She regularly teaches gardening classes at Garden Clubs, Community Centers and Schools and answers gardening questions in the Gardening Information booth at the LA County Fair every year.

Pam has served on our SFVOS Board of Directors for the last two years, is our (http://www.sfvos.com) webmaster and Co-Editor for our newsletter.  Pam lives in Northridge and has loved orchids most of her life. She has been growing orchid plants for many years and grows many types of orchids in her small greenhouse and outdoors.  Her favorites include Arpophyllum, Cattleyas,  Dendrobiums, Epidendrums, Oncidiums,  Miltonias, Vandas, Vanilla Orchids and Zygopedalums.

At our June meeting Pam will be sharing information about growing conditions that can lead to problems, pests such as insects, snails and spider-mites and she will discuss both fungal and bacterial diseases that can infect your beautiful plants and decimate your collection.   Pam will bring a PowerPoint presentation with many colorful photographs that demonstrate what to look for and how to deal with problems when they occur.   Please join us at our June meeting to learn about how to keep your orchids healthy and free of pests and disease

SFVOS Annual Orchid Auction April 2nd @ 7:00 pm

We are pleased to announce that the San Fernando Valley Orchid Society will be holding it’s annual Orchid Auction on Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014.  We were very lucky to get orchid expert, Doug Overstreet, to be our auctioneer again this year.  It will be held at our normal meeting place, the Sepulveda Garden Center.

Plan to arrive early as the doors will open at 6:45 pm so the bidders can take some time before the auction to preview the plants and mark down the  numbers of their favorites.  This is your chance to bid on good plants and raise money for the SFVOS. These funds pay for next years guest speakers and their amazing programs.

Remember the date:
Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014
Sepulveda Garden Center
16633 Magnolia Blvd.
Encino, CA 91316

Door open at 6:45 pm and the auction will begin at 7:00pm.

Refreshments will be served.

 

 

AOS Monthly Checklists Now Available

Please check out our new menu item featuring the AOS Monthly Checklists.  The current issue covers March and April.  These checklists are designed to help hobby growers learn how to care for their orchids in every season.   Each checklist features several types of orchids, and explains what is going on with them at this particular time of year, what we should be watching out for and what practices to adopt and/or avoid at this time.  There are six of these checklists a year.  I hope you find them as helpful as I do.  Enjoy.

Santa Barbara International Orchid Show 2014

Mark your calendar.   The Santa Barbara International Orchid Show is almost here.  It is always a great show with beautiful displays of every type of blooming orchid put together by Orchid Societies and Orchid Vendors. There are classes taught by experts and there is a huge room filled with vendors selling orchid plants and supplies.   If you haven’t already visited this show, it is definitely worth the short drive to Santa Barbara.

Additionally,  many of the Orchid growers that are in or near Santa Barbara hold Open Houses that same weekend so you can drop by the various greenhouses and see where the orchids are propagated and grown.   Mark your calendars.  You won’t want to miss these great events.

58th Annual Paphiopedilum Guild

Mark Your Calendars for this Special Event.

Expert Speaker Presentations

Slipper Orchid Displays • Orchid Sales
*New Location* Montecito Country Club *New Location*
902 Summit Road • Santa Barbara, CA

Saturday & Sunday, January 18-19, 2014

Featured Speakers:
Bill Goldner (Woodstream Orchids – Huntingtown, MD)
David Sorokowsky (Paph Paradise – Modesto, CA)
Dr. Harold Koopowitz (Editor Emeritus, Orchid Digest)
Chris Purver (Curator, Eric Young Orchid Foundation – Jersey, Channel Islands)
Plus a Presentation of the Latest
Paphiopedilum and Phragmipedium Awards by the American Orchid Society

Continental Breakfasts • Lunch • Dinner • Auction
Show & Sales setup at 7:30am Saturday
Lectures starting at 9:00am

Gift Certificates for Best Species and Best Hybrid

Full Event Registration: $95
(Guests of full registrants may accompany registrants to the BBQ & Auction(only) for $35 each)
Registration Closes January 12, 2014

This event is sponsored by Orchid Digest

Vandas

Vandas are impressive orchids that are relatively easy to grow.Vanda.in.cage

Vandas are monopodial, which means that the new leaves grow from the crown of the plant. This means the vanda is continually getting taller. Vanda flowers come in beautiful and superbly vibrant colors, including purples, blues, reds, oranges and yellows.  The flower spikes are very long and they usually have  8 to 10 blooms, which are located in a cluster at the end of the stem. The flower stem grow from the base of the leaves and can last for several weeks.   The long, heavy, flower laden stems can sometimes make the plants difficult to hang up and display at Orchid Shows or in your home, and may require additional support during blooming.

LIGHTING
Vandas need an abundance of light. They like either bright  morning  sun and/or  late afternoon sun, providing the sun exposure occurs gradually.  The plants need to adapt slowly to the any increase in lighting.  A good tip is to provide full morning sun whenever possible.  You don’t need a greenhouse to grow Vandas.   Any outside location with bright morning light will do, but  be careful while making the change to brighter light.  Try not to expose it to direct sun on the leaves,  just bright light.  Move it gradually, over the course of several weeks,  into brighter and brighter light and be careful to do it a little at at time.

I had my first Vanda for five years and it never bloomed.  I didn’t know what I was doing wrong.  It seemed healthy but wasn’t flowering.   I was fortunate that at one of our SFVOS meetings,  there was an expect who shared his knowledge about Vandas and explained to me that Vandas are happiest when they get very bright light.  The very next day, I moved my Vanda from the east side of my greenhouse to brighter west side of the greenhouse and I hung it up from the rafters at the top.      I am happy to report that since moving my Vanda to  brighter light, it has bloomed three times in the last year, and each bloom is more beautiful than the last.

TEMPERATURE
Vandas prefer to be kept on the warm side.  Vandas do best when when the nighttime temp is between 55 to 70°F and when daytime temperatures range between 65 to 95°F.vanda.multi.colors.

WATERING
The general “Rule of Thumb” for watering Vanda should be:  Hot temps = more water, and cooler temps = less water.

My Vanda is growing in a wooden cage with the roots all flowing out.  Some of the roots are 24 inches long. I have very little potting media in the cage, and most of the roots are loose and free, but many of them have attached themselves to the wooden cage itself.   I generally water mine about once a week, but when the temperatures are over  95 degrees and the humidity is low,  I give it a daily shower.

Remember that Vandas grown in baskets, without potting media, require more frequent watering.  In baskets, they may need to be watered daily during the summer. Always allow your Vanda to dry out between waterings. Try to water the plant early in the day, so that the foliage will be dry by nightfall.   If you are growing your Vanda in a greenhouse, and the humidity is constantly high you can use Physan 20 once a month (add it to your water) to prevent bacterial and fungal disease.

HUMIDITY
Although Vandas generally prefer 60% to 80% humidity, I can report that my greenhouse almost never has humidity this high.  If you can increase the humidity during the growing season, from early spring through late fall, your Vanda will thank you for it.  During the summer, watering should be supplemented with daily misting of the leaves. Humidity trays may be needed if your Vandas are growing indoors.

FERTILIZER
Vandas are heavy feeders. They must be fertilized on a regular basis! For best results, use nutrients every week. The experts recommend that you water the plants first with plain water, and then water the plant with a 1/4 strength nutrient solution.  Once a month water only with plain water to flush out any excess fertilizer.vanda_orchid_plant.in.pot

POTTING
Vandas may be grown in a medium to large sized Orchid Bark Mixture or you can grow them in wire or wooden baskets, which can then be  suspended (hung up) by a wire hanger attached to the cage.  Plants grown in baskets do not need to be repotted often as those in pots. Vandas grown in regular potting mix in pots should be repotted once every two years.  Repotting should be done in the spring.

It is almost impossible to extract a vanda from a “basket” or  “cage” once it has become attached to it.  When my vandas outgrow their smaller “baskets” I generally leave them in that basket and just place the entire small basket inside a larger basket.  I carefully thread the roots through the holes of the new basket and try not to damage the roots as much as possible.  One of my Vandas which is currently in an 8″ square wooden (redwood) cage has three smaller “cages” inside the basket from prior stages of  its life.   It does no harm to leave the old basket(s) there if they are in good shape and not starting to rot.

If your Vanda’s home “Basket or cage” begins to rot (which may also mean that you are overwatering) then you must re-pot for the health of the plant.  You will need to extract the roots as carefully as possible before re-potting it in its new home.  Soaking the roots for a couple of hours before attempting this will soften the plants roots and make it easier for you to handle them and try to get it out of its old pot.  Take your time, and save as many roots as possible.    Even if you lose a few roots, the plant should rebound and adapt to it’s new home in no time.

SELECTING YOUR VANDA

Vandas are becoming more available to hobby growers and can usually be found for sale at Orchid Shows and they are also available for purchase from many Orchid Growers websites.    You will probably want to start with a smaller specimen, as they are much easier to transport and would be much less expensive.   Your Vanda may need to get a bit bigger before it will bloom.   Your patience will be rewarded with a spectacular show of flowers.

 

PESTS  Common pests associated with Vandas are scale and spider mites.  Check your plant often to make sure it is pest free. Check our section on pest control if you notice any “freeloaders” hanging around your plant.  Vandas hung up from the rafters and/or suspended  are much less likely to get pests.  Best of luck with your Vandas and enjoy the spectacular blooms.