Concepcion Boyd, co-owner of The Orchid Connection in San Diego, will
present a slide program on Mexican orchid species.
Concepcion (Connie) and Jerry Boyd opened their orchid nursery in 1982
at Fortin de las Flores, Veracruz, Mexico. In 1985 they established
an orchid laboratory. Connie readily acknowledges that much of her
storehouse of knowledge on orchid germination was gleaned from studying
Dr. Joseph Arditti’s books on orchid biology.
Connie was Vice President of the Botanical Garden Toxpan in Cordoba,
Veracruz, Mexico, and supervised the construction of the garden.
In 1997, Connie and Jerry opened their nursery, The Orchid Connection,
in San Diego. They have been exhibitors and vendors at several international
orchid shows, including the Japan Grand Prix in the Tokyo Dome.
Connie neglected to note in the biographical information she sent to
us that she created and maintains The Orchid Connection’s website.
Check out their plant list at: http://www.orchidconnection.com
Our May 3rd meeting is Connie’s first speaking engagement in Phoenix.
Let’s give her a warm OSA welcome!
NOTE: During our meeting, there will be a silent auction of orchids
from The Orchid Connection.
21st Annual Santa Barbara International Orchid Fair
It’s time to mark your calendars for our annual trip to Santa Barbara.
Held on the grounds of the Santa Barbara Orchid Estate, the Fair features
growers from around the world. The Fair is host to over 50 different
with thousands of plants for sale. We encourage all OSA members
to participate in this annual event.
So mark your calendars for Saturday, July 21st
and look for more details to come!
From the President’s Desk
Lou Ann Remeikis
How observant are you? In this newsletter publication, you should
notice something different. If you can’t figure out what has changed,
I will tell you at the end of this writing.
I certainly hope everyone enjoyed Doug’s photography presentation as
much as I did. I had, in a past life, been married to a professional
photographer and I was quite surprised that I remembered so much!
I do have to say I was very impressed with some of the simple and inexpensive
accessories Doug brought that can improve photographic results by people
like you and me. I believe a lot of us will be using some of his
suggestions the next time we try to capture the beauty of our blooming
orchids on film! Thank you, Doug, for taking the time to make the
presentation and in doing such a great job in helping us understand the
mechanics behind taking a good photo!
It was very nice to see so many of our members donate to the raffle
table at last month’s meeting! Donations REALLY assist in keeping
expenses down for the Society, and assist with the accrual of funds to
our treasury. It is a win-win situation. Keep the donations
coming! Remember, donations don’t always have to be plants.
There are a lot of other items members could use that are welcomed at the
raffle table, too!
Good-bye to Jennifer Busch! Jennifer is moving to Hawaii in May,
lucky gal! We will truly miss you and I hope you keep in touch with
us. Let us know what it’s like to grow orchids in paradise!
It has been recently revealed that OUR Webmaster, Jim Johnson, also
developed the website for Bob Gordon, a good friend of OSA’s.
Jim does great work! Check out Bob’s new website at http://phalbooks.com.
It’s a great resource for books written by Bob.
In accordance with meeting our 501 (c) (3) requirements, OSA has made
a donation of $1000 to the Orchid Identification Center in Sarasota,
Florida. This critically needed donation is earmarked for explicit
use by the OIC and Dr. John Atwood for DNA studies of Panamanian maxillaries.
Have you figured out what is different about this newsletter?
If not, this is the time to announce OSA’s new Editor – Ainsley LaCour.
Ainsley has volunteered to do her magic in putting together our newsletter
beginning with this issue. Let me welcome Ainsley to this “prestigious
non-paying position” and thank her for contributing her talents in keeping
OSA’s members informed of Society news.
I also want to express my thanks to Jennifer Hall for all the work she
has done as Editor of The Arizona Orchidist over the last year and a half.
Jennifer has done an excellent job as our Editor and has added some great
features to our newsletter that I am sure will be continued with Ainsley
as Editor. Jennifer, I am still counting on you for future OSA needs!!!
Be safe during the Memorial Day holiday, and Happy Growing…
Lou Ann Remeikis
Welcome to our new
Ross and Silke Babcock
Our May OSA meeting is your last opportunity to purchase raffle tickets
for the Butterfly Quilt!
Please support this worthy fundraiser project for the Arizona Federation
of Garden Clubs
See Lou Ann Remeikis for tickets Drawing is June 3rd!
($1 each or 6 for $5)
For your Information: OSA member, Dr. John T. Atwood, Jr., has
been nominated as Research Associate of Harvard University and has also
been contracted to serve as Curator of Orchids for the Missouri Botanical
Gardens. These titles are in addition to John’s duties as Senior
Scientist for Marie Selby Botanical Gardens
John is one of the world-renowned scientists scheduled to speak at the
May 23-26, 2nd Annual MesoAmerican Conference on Orchidology and Conservation
in Costa Rica.
An accomplished church organist, John has officially signed on with
two churches in Vermont, to present his Rain Forest Recitals. He
will donate his fees to preserve a critical corridor of forest in Monteverde,
Costa Rica. He said, “My scheme is to get as many churches involved
as possible, then those doing the fund-raising can show donations from
these churches and follow suit. In talking to clergy, (I discovered)
churches are poised to protect tropical forest, so perhaps I can be a catalyst.”
Thank you, Jennifer Busch, for the donation of soda
to the Arizona Veteran’s Home
OSA 2001 Membership Rosters
New Membership rosters were distributed (one roster per household) at
our April meeting. A page insert containing corrections and additions
to the roster will be available at our May 3rd meeting. The page
will be placed on our raffle ticket sales table. If there are corrections
to be made to the roster you received at the April meeting, send me an
e-mail: <firstname.lastname@example.org> or phone me at (480) 947-8479.
You could also fax any changes to me at (480) 947-0998.
Please notify me of any corrections before April 23rd.
Thank you for your donations
to the April raffle table
Mary Alice Baumberger, Joe Freasier, Alan Ladd, Rosemary Lort, Lou Ann
Remeikis, Judy and Ken Vincent, Ainsley and Bryan LaCour, Wilella Stimmell,
D&D Flowers (Dennis Olivas), Siam Orchids (Sam Promarag), and OSA
Community Service Report
by Wilella Stimmell, CSP Coordinator
On March 20, NORMA KAFER, GARY KOOISTRA, JAY MUNN, and I presented our
hands-on orchid program for Kindergarten students at Spirit of Hope Montessori
School, 14403 N. 7th St., Peoria. The children were well-mannered
and very quiet compared to same-age children we have encountered at other
schools. The small class size, the large classroom, and the presence
of two teachers were probably factors which contributed to the tranquility
that prevailed during the program. This was one of those rare occasions
when the number of OSA program team members was sufficient to work one-on-one
with each student.
Programs scheduled for MAY:
1) On Friday, May 11, we will present 3 orchid programs for 70
students at WASHINGTON ELEMENTARY SCHOOL, 8033 N. 27th Ave., Phoenix.
These are the first programs we have been asked to present for classes
of English Second Language students. Lee Kaplan, 2nd grade teacher
at Washington Elementary, reports that many of her students came to the
US from Croatia, Bosnia, and Afghanistan, and they are thankful for any
special attention they receive. Our first program is scheduled for
9:35 a.m. (2nd grade); the second program begins at 10:40 (3rd-6th grade);
and the last program begins at 12:30 p.m. (1st grade).
2) Meline Iglesias, Program Manager of the Asian and Pacific Islander
Special Emphasis Program, VA MEDICAL CENTER, 650 E. Indian School Rd.,
Phoenix, requested OSA’s participation in the May 17 ASIAN AND PACIFIC
ISLANDER CELEBRATION at the VAMC. From 10 a.m. until 3 p.m., we will
have a display of blooming plants on the first floor of the hospital, and
at 11 a.m., we will present a hands-on program in the Conference Room.
Since embarking on our Community Service Agenda in 1995, this will
be the first time we will be working with the VA in Phoenix. Meline
stated that she hopes we will continue to provide assistance.
Friday, May 11:
Hands-on Orchid Program
Washington Elementary School
8033 N. 27th Ave., Phoenix
9:35 a.m., 10:40 a.m., 12:30 p.m.
Thursday, May 17:
Asian and Pacific Islander
VA Medical Center
650 E. Indian School Rd., Phoenix
10:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m.
DONATIONS/ ITEMS NEEDED
Blooming display plants for:
May 11 hands-on orchid program
May 17 Asian and Pacific Islander Celebration
We also need to replenish our lava rock supply, (used in the bottom
of the milk jug greenhouses)!! The last time we stocked up on lava
rocks, Shirley Engberg’s husband, John, (a non-member who volunteered to
lend a hand), wielded a shovel and filled as many buckets of rocks as my
vehicle would hold!
Propagation of Restrepiella ophiocephala
Several months ago, Willie brought in a plant of Restrepiella ophiocephala.
A recent import, the plant presented both old growths from its years in
the wild, as well as several more from growing in cultivation. Along
with a number of flowers, the plant also held a little treasure– a small
seed capsule, about the size of an almond. Willie noted that the
plant had arrived with it, and was kind enough to save it and notify me
when it had split.
The genus Restrepiella was proposed in 1966, splitting its members
off from Pleurothallis. A few species have been added and subtracted
over the years, and the genus is now monotypic– this is to say, one species
in the entire genus, Restrepiella ophiocephala. Known from tropical
lowland forests from Mexico to Costa Rica, I do not have any record of
this species having been propagated. (i.e., grown from seed), but these
things are always tough to determine. Some lab in Guatemala might
have germinated it years ago, but based on what we know, thanks to the
seeds provided by Willie, we are pleased to announce that we have successfully
propagated this species for the first time.
Late in March, the seeds germinated, and are growing well in the lab.
It’s wonderful to get unusual species in the lab, and even better when
genetic material from a wild-pollinated capsule proves viable. Thanks,
Willie! Other growers are encouraged to help propagate species orchids.
Feel free to ask me how.
Aaron J. Hicks
The Orchid Seedbank
For all of the amateur OSA photographers that were inspired by our April
program, here are some additional tips from photographer Greg Allikas.
You can't take beautiful photos of mediocre flowers. Look at the blooms,
select only fully opened, flawless flowers.
Tie distracting elements out of the picture, using masking tape or twist
tie. Remove stakes or cut them short enough that they're out of the picture
Lighting is a main ingredient of all good photography. Look for either
window light of good quality, bright open shade such as the shady side
of a building, or modified flash. Avoid dense shade, such as under a tree.
Try modifying the light output by diffusion. A white handkerchief used
to cover the flash lens with a rubberband can substantially improve light
quality. A piece of white foamcore can be easily fashioned into a bounce
reflector, or you can buy one ready-made. Even a white file card and rubber
band can be used for bounce flash.
If shooting outdoors, find a sheltered location, out of wind, to avoid
Use a plain background of neutral color (poster board or mat board is
good). Muted earth tones set off the flowers well without being distracting.
Try colors like charcoal, olive green, brown, dull blue and of course,
black. If using flash, place background at least 2 ft. behind flowers to
If you have designs on producing studio-quality flower pictures but
can't quite justify the cost of studio lights, there's a great way to do
it using a couple of card tables and a white bed sheet.
If using auto-exposure and you have the choice; select aperature priority
and use a small f.-stop (aperture setting) for maximum depth of field.
The larger the f. number, the smaller the aperture. Keep in mind that as
you decrease the aperture you will increase the exposure time. Unless you
have very steady hands always use a tripod for exposures longer than 125th
sec. If your camera has a self-timer, use it to fire the shutter when using
a tripod to avoid shake.
If using an auto focus camera, visually check focus before shooting
and correct if necessary.
When shooting color print film keep in mind that the lab technicians
don't know what color your orchids are. It often helps to include a familiar
object in the first frame of a sequence of pictures shot under the same
light...film boxes work well.
Close-up lenses are an inexpensive way to focus closer. They come in
various strengths, +1 to +4 and screw into a lens just like a filter does.
Everybody loves a black background for flower pictures...well almost
everybody. It’s a great way to make a background for isolating a single
Visit www.orchidworks.com for additional photo tips as well as beautiful
orchid photographs and fun regular features.
May/June Orchid Checklist
? Cattleya The last of the spring-flowering types — those that flower
from a ripened hard pseudobulb — will be finishing, while the first summer-blooming
types will be showing buds on their rapidly growing, soft pseudobulbs.
Both may need potting, as signaled by deteriorating mix, this month. The
spring bloomers present no problems, as you will be dealing with fully
ripe, well-hardened pseudobulbs. They will be ready to root on the mature
front pseudobulb and will establish quickly. The summer bloomers, will
be brittle and may be in bud. Nonetheless, experienced growers know that
unless potted now, they may not root later, as this type tends to be seasonal
in its rooting behavior. Stake the lead growth to avoid breakage.
May can still present some changing light conditions that can lead
to burning of the foliage if the plants have not been properly acclimatized.
Allow them to build up their tolerance to higher light gradually. Changing
light and temperatures can also be the source of some frustration when
trying to determine when plants need watering. While cattleyas will be
entering into a period of rapid growth starting this month, they have still
not built up sufficient momentum to be significantly slowed by your missing
a day or two of watering owing to dark weather. As always, it is safer
to err on the dry side than on the wet. It is important, though, especially
to the summer bloomers. Too much shade will cause rapidly developing inflorescences
to droop unattractively.
? Paphiopedilum The Paphiopedilum Maudiae types will be well into their
season now, so a careful eye should be used toward staking. Do not be too
anxious to stake, however. Many of this type, if staked too soon, will
develop nodding flowers that do not face the observer. It is better to
allow the flowers to ripen naturally, then support the spike right below
the ovary for best display. This is especially common in Paphiopedilum
fairrieanum—derived hybrids. If you have to do something when you first
see the emerging spikes, just put the stake in the pot next to the spiking
growth. Not only will this help you, but you will be able to see where
the spikes are, so you can continue to pay attention to their development.
The multifloral types will be entering their most active growth phase,
so lots of light, water and fertilizer are called for to mature their large
growths. Many will be spiking in the next couple of months, so be on the
lookout for the emerging inflorescences. These may benefit from earlier
staking than most, as the inflorescences grow so quickly in some cases
that they can be quite soft. Again, best support is right below the ovary
of the first flower. This will allow the most natural presentation of the
? Phalaenopsis Except for the latest—spiking plants, all phalaenopsis
should be ready for potting or already potted. Because phalaenopsis are
tropical plants, they tend to be seasonal in their rooting behavior. The
critical point for potting is when new roots emerge from the base of the
plant. This is absolutely the best time to repot a phalaenopsis. The summer-flowering
types, based on Doritis background, have ideally already been potted and
are becoming freshly established, ready to support their soon-to-emerge
spikes for the summer season.
Phalaenopsis potted at the right point in their growth cycle will reestablish
almost immediately, with fresh roots growing into the new medium nearly
uninterrupted. As soon as the flush of new root growth is seen, begin regular
watering and fertilizing to make maximum use of the major growing season.
Do not get over-exuberant with your watering, though, allowing water to
splash between plants. This can be a source of infection for both water-borne
pathogens and viral contamination. Phalaenopsis are much more susceptible
to virus than was previously thought. Take extra care to keep your collection
free of bacterial and viral problems, which you can accomplish by maintaining
a clean growing area.
Prepared by Ned Nash, AOS Director of Conservation
Reprinted from AOS website, http://www.theaos.org/orchids/todo/mayjune.html
Q & A ORCHID QUESTIONS & ANSWERS
Q. Rooting Orchids
What is the best way to re-root orchids that have lost their roots
for one reason or another? Specifically I’d like to know about re-rooting
phals and plants in the Cattleya Alliance.
-Mary Lou Hoskins, Hampden, Maine
Traditional wisdom dictates that plants can be encouraged to root by
providing a moist atmosphere while keeping the medium on the dry side.
This enables the plant to remain turgid (not wilted) until the roots naturally
come to support the foliage. In practice, this can be done by repotting
the plants into the smallest container that will accept the root mass and
encasing the entire product in a plastic bag. The bag can be supported
off the foliage by making a wire loop and inserting the ends of the wire
into the pot. The plant should be watered into the medium, covered
with the bag and left in a shady spot until root growth is evident.
Depending on the season, this may take days or weeks. As days shorten
after late September until January, it will take longer than in spring
and summer as days lengthen.
Orchids– The Magazine of the American Orchid Society,
Q&A February 1999
Q. Meristemming Monopodials
Can a monopodial (vandaceous) orchid be meristemmed? If so, does
it destroy the main lead? How do they perform the process for a prized
or awarded vanda or renanthera with only one main stem?
-Randy Peterson, Mountain View, California
Monopodial orchids are more difficult to meristem than sympodial ones
and your chances of success are limited. You are correct that you
would need the actively growing apical bud and, in most cases using vanda
or renanthera, there is only one. If you remove the bud, there will
be no new growth from the area. However, vigorously growing vandas
and renantheras will often produce one or more keikis on the lower part
of the stem. In six months or so, the keikis are usually large enough
to remove and pot up. This is no different from taking an old, tall
vanda and cutting the top 18 to 24 inches and potting it up. The
remaining basal portion if left undisturbed in the original container will
often produce keikis. This is an important way of propagating important
-Tom Sheehan, PhD.
Orchids– The Magazine of the American Orchid Society,
Q&A May 2000
Q. Keikis or Flowers
I grow orchids, mostly phalaenopsis, under lights and regulate day
length and temperature to ensure reasonable success with growth and flowering.
I have been attempting to propagate some of my plants using KeikiGrow,
but have been getting branches with flowers rather than keikis. Can
-Bruce Guenther, Ft. Wayne, Indiana
About 20 years ago, we did an experiment at Armacost & Royston
where we tried the active ingredient of KeikiGrow in lanolin to induce
branching of flower spikes. In other words, we tried to get the same
results you are having. As I recall, we were more successful getting
the spikes to branch under shorter-day conditions, where longer days (the
plants are actually responding to night length) tended to favor keiki production.
Perhaps if you try giving the plants a few (two to four) additional hours
of light, it may induce keikis.
Orchids– The Magazine of the American Orchid Society,
Q&A May 1999
I have survived my first newsletter! I hope everyone enjoys it.
After perusing the past OSA newsletters for inspiration, I realized that
I have big shoes to fill in the editing department. The first newsletter
was published in July & August of 1967, a month before I was
born! It looks like I have a lot of reading to do. Unlike Clarence
Lindsten, I will not be entertaining you with my poetry, (you are lucky!).
However, I do look forward to keeping you informed, educated, and inspired
to volunteer in our community. I look forward to hearing your ideas
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