|The Arizona Orchidist January 2001 January Program
"The Culture of the Rupiculous Laelias of Brazil"
Biographical Sketch by our Speaker, DR. THELMA (DEL)
"I began growing orchids over 25 years ago. I was inquisitive
about where and how orchids grow in their native habitats, so I went on
collecting trips with experienced collectors. I was consumed with the idea
that if orchids grow outdoors in nature, I needed to visit natural habitats
to see where and how orchids grow. I wanted to grow my orchids outdoors,
so I needed to visit natural habitats and learn how to replicate orchid
environments. This is how I became involved with species and growing them
outdoors. I spent at least 20 years learning which orchids would grow well
in my 40 degree to 100 degree Fahrenheit environment. Subsequently I developed
my business, PACESETTERS UNLIMITED. In 1985, I retired from my "day job"
as Occupational Psychologist and expanded my "hobby" business into a pot
nursery, DESERT TO JUNGLE NURSERY, which is an eclectic nursery which incorporates
plants from both desert and jungle environments. I have been several times
President of my home orchid society, San Fernando Orchid Society, am a
member of the American Orchid Society, past Advertising Manager of the
ORCHID DIGEST, and last but not least, am a member of OSA!"
NOTE TO OSA MEMBERS AND GUESTS: Del will be bringing some
special orchids for our JANUARY 4 SILENT AUCTION!
We are now beginning fresh with a brand new year - 2001!
I find it difficult to believe that the year 2000 is over but it is. I
hope your holidays were filled with family and friends and all the things
that make the traditions special. I, for one, have made some New Year’s
resolutions that I hope I can live up to - time will tell!
I wish to thank all our members for the generous additions
to our food table at the December’s meeting and auction. Everything I had
the opportunity to taste was wonderful! December’s meeting was a lot of
fun, and hopefully everyone left with something they really wanted! I left
with much more than I really needed - but I enjoyed the “friendly competition”
and seeing the wonderful turnout for our annual auction event. Appropriately,
a big “thank you” goes out to our two auctioneers, Doug Baldwin and Joe
Freasier. They did a great job, as usual. Unfortunately Joe Civello, who
was to have assisted in the auctioneering, took ill the day of our auction
and was unable to participate. Joe, you were missed, but we hope you have
fully recovered from that nasty flu.
There are several of our members, or their family members,
who are facing some serious illnesses. I am sure, that along with me, you’ll
join me in keeping them in your thoughts and prayers. The auction can be
considered a success! Not only were we financially successful during this
fundraiser, we also sold all the plants that had been ordered or donated
by businesses for the auction. A big thank you for all our members who
donated items to be auctioned during the night. All donations make a big
difference as it safeguards the treasury from putting cash out for the
purchase of items for the auction.
Start thinking about OSA’s 2001 orchid show. “Tentatively”
it is scheduled for November 10th and 11th. This date should be confirmed
before the next newsletter is published. We do, however, have the theme
of the annual show. The show’s title will be “Orchids in Toyland.” This
theme will give us a lot of possibilities for the decoration of the display
area. Please start thinking about any toys you may have that can be used
in our presentation. OSA is also going to be working with the annual toy
drive “Toys for Tots” which is sponsored by the US Marine Corp. OSA will
be donating many of the toys from our show display to the Toys for Tots
toy drive at the conclusion of our show. This toy drive really benefits
those children in the Phoenix area who are not as fortunate as most other
children, and allow them to celebrate the holiday too.
January is the month all OSA membership renewals are due.
Included in the December newsletter was the renewal application form, which
should be filled out and returned to the Treasurer, Wilella Stimmell, at
the January meeting. If you chose, you may also mail it to her. It is important
to complete the form and return it with your payment for the 2001 membership
dues to remain current and in good standings with OSA and continue receiving
the Arizona Orchidist newsletter on a monthly basis.
At the January meeting, we will be passing around a refreshment
sign-up sheet for the 2001 meeting schedule. PLEASE take a moment and sign
up for bringing beverages and/or edibles for one of the meetings throughout
the year. There are only 10 months that are available as January has been
taken care of, and December is always our “refreshment buffet” which is
combined with our annual December Live Auction meeting. Your generosity
I am maybe prematurely announcing our program for February,
but I would like to give our members plenty of time to acquire the necessary
items needed should you decide to participate in the hands-on program.
We will be deflasking Vanda sanderiana seedlings and the seedlings will
be available for adoption by our members. Should we have more members wishing
to adopt a seedling than we have seedlings, we will simply draw numbers
from a hat to determine who will be able to take one home. What you will
need to bring from home, if you chose to participate, will be a reasonably
tall plastic container. OSA will provide all the other items needed for
the project. This will be a fun program and the seedlings look VERY healthy!
OSA has a great deal of activities planned for the coming
year. I sincerely hope the Board can count on YOU for your support and
assistance for these events. OSA only flourishes when the members do their
fair share. The OSA Board of Directors have been very fortunate in having
members who are WORKERS, and we hope we can continue to count on you during
January is the month that renewal membership dues are
THE OSA LIBRARY IS OPEN EVERY REGULAR MEETING! So remember
to check out that book, magazine, or video to answer your orchid questions.
COMMUNITY SERVICE REPORT
by Wilella Stimmell, CSP Coordinator
OSA begins a new year of community service on JANUARY
3rd, when we will present our "Orchid 101" program for members of the MANZANITAGARDEN
CLUB, in Globe, AZ. MGC meetings are usually held on the first Thursday
of the month, as are OSA's meetings. Because MGC club members REALLY wanted
to hear our program, they changed their meeting day to accommodate our
schedule. (They have patiently been "in line" for our program since May!
We do appreciate their patience!) The program will begin at 2:00 PM in
the Globe Public Library, 339 S. Broad St. We will need to leave Phoenix
by 12:30 PM. The estimated traveling time to Globe is approximately 90
minutes. Any OSA member who is interested in traveling to Globe on January
3rd, is welcome to attend our program, either as a spectator or as an active
presenter. Display plants are also always welcome, so if you have a few
that you would like to lend, please phone me (480-947-8479).
We need a blooming plant for use as a doorprize, and if
you have one that you are willing to donate for the program, let me know.
From school classrooms and senior centers, we are proudly extending our
helping hands! We are broadening our community service horizon by lending
a helping hand during the EQUESTRIAN SPECIAL OLYMPICS, on Saturday, JANUARY
20, Western Saddle Club Arena, 12425 N. 7th St., Phoenix. The event begins
at 9:00 AM. More details will be available at our January 4th meeting.
For those of you who might not know, our new 2nd VP (Outside
Speaker Program Chairwoman), Julie Rathbun, wears another (non-orchid)
"hat", President of the Western Saddle Club. Thanks to Fred Rathbun for
calling our attention to the Equestrian Special Olympics event. Those of
us who plan to act as "spotters" for the children, will wear our OSA t-shirts
and/or OSA name badges.
The site: National Gardening Association
The Address: http://www.garden.org/regionalreports/home.tml
An easy to navigate site diveded into the regions of the
US. Has all kinds of interesting information.
SCIENCE UPDATE: SEQUENCING OF ARABIDOPSIS thaliana GENOME
IS COMPLETE! by Wilella Stimmell In the September, 2000 issue of "The Arizona
Orchidist", I reported on the status of the sequencing of the A. thaliana
genome. On August 14, the website of the Arabidopsis Genome Initiative
revealed that the sequencing was 92.9% complete. In the December 14 issue
(Vol. 408, #6814) of NATURE, an international weekly journal of science,
published by Macmillan Publishers Ltd., England, the completion of the
sequencing of the remaining three chromosomes of A. thaliana was announced.
The genome sequence was completed four years ahead of schedule. Articles
plus supporting data AND an A. thaliana slide show are available free from
NATURE'S Genome Gateway, a portal to the latest in genome research, at
http://www.nature.com/genomics The genome of A. thaliana contains a complete
set of genes for controlling developmental patterns, metabolism, responses
to environmental cues (such as stress), and disease resistance - invaluable
information for understanding the evolution of flowering plants. Researchers
can use this information to manipulate light, soil, and nutrients and study
the effect of the manipulations on development, physiology, and seed production.
Researchers have worked nearly 30 years on A. thaliana. The International
Rice Genome Sequencing Project (IRGSP) was launched just two years ago,
and an optimistic projection for its completion is in the year 2004. (A
copy of 4 of the 10 "weed" articles from the Dec. 14 issue of NATURE, will
be available for viewing on the raffle ticket sales table at our January
4 meeting. Most pages were downloaded in PDF format. I "told" my printer
to magnify the downloaded pages to 100% to print, but... A magnifying glass
will be provided for easier reading.)
Growing Paphs in Windowsills: A Full Circle but with New
Perspective John T. Atwood, Senior Scientist for Marie Selby Botanical
Gardens As of this writing, I can hear the rain beating against the skylights
as it glazes our country roads with ice; weather which forecasters predict
will turn to snow for the next three days-not a landscape most 24-year
veterans to sunny Florida would look forward to. Returning to Vermont presents
new challenges, not to mention relearning how to negotiate snow and ice.
Still, the winter wonderland is apparent everywhere, and some days are
even sunny! In this setting, orchidists really appreciate growing orchids!
We are growing just three paphiopedilums as house plants. How do paphs
respond to home conditions? The three paphs we have to start with are:
Paphiopedilum Maudiae ‘The Queen’, P. venustum, and P. St. Swithin. I have
seen Paphiopedilum Maudiae grown under normal fluorescent lights in Michigan
with some success, therefore this hybrid seems a good choice. Paphiopedilum
venustum forms a full circle for me having been my first orchid acquired
in 1959 (different clone). The most interesting plant for this modest experiment
is Paphiopedilum St. Swithin. Although a hybrid, both parents (P. rothschildianum
and P. philippinense) thrive in the wild in bright and sometimes full sun.
Can a coryopedilum paph thrive as a house plant? Potting materials for
the P. Maudiae and P. venustum consist of locally collected live sphagnum,
but I used limestone chat with about 5% compost for the P. St. Swithin.
One of the notable differences I note in all three plants compared with
growing in Florida is the turgidity of the leaves, which I attribute to
water quality. Bending a leaf, especially of P. Maudiae, can easily result
in breakage. I could never acquire such turgid leaves in Sarasota. All
three plants are in active growth producing broader leaves. Specific results
follow. Paphiopedilum Maudiae has a flower spanning a full 13.5 cm vertically
supported on a scape 42 cm long including the ovary which I failed to stake.
The plant has four new growths, and a fifth has appeared from the old rhizome.
Paphiopedilum venustum responded to the heat of Sarasota with weak growths
sporting dull leaves, but the recent growth is more robust with pronounced
patterning on its waxy leaves. It has a single flower on a short scape.
It has six new shoots developing, and time will determine if our growing
conditions will repeat the success of years ago. The biggest surprise is
the vigor of P. St. Swithin now sporting four buds. I would have expected
at most two buds at this latitude. Is this light-lover producing one last
gasp before expiring? The new growth with broadened leaves suggests a plant
in perfect health. Perhaps there is basis for optimism from the habitats.
In the wild both parents of P. St. Swithin are usually exposed to bright
light during midday unlike their mottled leaved forest floor relatives.
Is it possible that the drier home atmosphere is close to nature? What
about light? Many of our days are overcast, yet windows are quite sunny
on bright days, and there is supplemental light during the evening from
an adjacent lamp. Maybe different aspects of our growing conditions mimic
the natural habitat. The sun of a southerly window comes in at a low angle
making rooms bright during midday. The maximum angle of the sun with the
earth at our latitude is 23 degrees on December 21 compared with 40 degrees
in Sarasota, Florida. Although the days are short, the sun hits the same
window at sun-up as well as sundown. There may be another clue from the
habitat. Paphiopedilum rothschildianum and P. philippinense usually grow
on the sides of cliffs receiving light from an oblique angle, suggesting
that the south window in our latitude may be optimal for these orchids.
The only negative aspect of these plants as house plants is their sheer
size, but perhaps a more compact clone of Paphiopedilum philippinense could
be used as a parent. Orchid growing has come a long way since Veitch proclaimed,
“Cypripedium philippinense has its home in one of the hottest regions of
the world, growing in the blaze of a tropical sun and exposed to the force
of the monsoon storms, climatic conditions that are simply impossible in
the glass structures of Europe” (Manual of Orchidaceous Plants, part 4,
1889). What would Veitch think of growing its hybrid in a sunny window?
Most orchidists would have difficulty restricting themselves to three plants,
yet a limited and carefully selected collection allows for more detailed
observation. If vigorous growth over the next year confirms my surprise
with P. St. Swithin, I will encourage growing coryopedilum paphs as house
plants! The Orchid Society of Arizona gratefully acknowledges the generous
donations received from businesses for our December fund-raising auction.
Several of the business owners annually donate items for our auction, and
we thank them for their continued support of our community service agenda.
Listed in alphabetical order, donations were received from:
CHEM LAB SUPPLY
2810 S. 24th St. Suite 110
Phoenix, AZ 85034
1367 Horsemill Road
El Cajon, CA 92021
DONALD HAHN NATURAL HISTORY BOOKS
P.O. Box 1004
Cottonwood, AZ 86326
THE ORCHID HOUSE
1699 Sage Ave.
Los Osos, CA 93402
THE ORCHID SEEDBANK PROJECT
P. O. Box 7042
Chandler, AZ 85246
WHITE RIVER ORCHIDS
P. O. Box 1682
Buckley, WA 98321
Whenever possible, please demonstrate your support of
these businesses for their generous donations by making purchases from
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