Grower on Call for April is Bev Tall, 816-4772.
NEXT OSA BOARD MEETING
The next Board Meeting is on Sunday, March 28th, at 1:00 pm. It will be
hosted by Keith Mead. Phone: 496-5762 Keith's address is 12054 S. Appaloosa, Phoenix, AZ (Ahwatukee). Take I-8
to Elliot. Go west on Elliot to Equestrian. West on Equestrian to
Appaloosa. South on Appaloosa to Keith's house. As a favor to Keith, any regular members planning on attending, please let
him know so appropriate seating and refreshments can be ready.
REMEMBER: Board meetings are always open to the full membership, so please
know you are invited.
NEXT OSA SOCIETY MEETING
The next regular society monthly meeting will be Thursday, April 1, 1999, at
the Valley Garden Center, 1809 N. 15th Avenue, Phoenix, Arizona, (phone
252-2120). The meeting, open to all plant enthusiasts, will start at
If any plants are left from the Gardener's World Garden Party they will be
brought to the April meeting for liquidation.
FROM THE PRESIDENT'S DESK
Lou Ann Remeikis
Yes, you read right! I have assumed the role of President of the Orchid
Society of Arizona. It is our misfortune that Cathy Nelson resigned her
post effective March 12th. As many of you are aware, Cathy's employment
with the County Assessor's Office has been flooded with protests on property
valuations. This has caused Cathy to make a difficult decision to resign in
order to meet the needs of her job - lots of mandatory overtime. I respect
her decision, as she felt she would not be able to devote enough time to our
Presidential position, thereby creating a hardship for our Society. I wish
to thank Cathy for all she has done in the few short months of her tenure.
I hope once her life settles down a bit she will be able to participate in
our activities - we still consider her a "worker." I know she loves OSA and
I am also sure it was a hard decision for her to make!
With that said, I want all members to know I will do my best to keep OSA
running smoothly. I also love this society and wish to see it do well. If
I call on individuals to help, I hope I will have your cooperation. As many
of you know, I work two jobs (that I get paid for) and many other things
occupy my life. By the way, my second paying job is not as President of
OSA. It will be necessary for me to delegate - something I'm not used to
doing. OSA's Board Members are so good to "volunteer" for many of our
projects but I am counting on YOU, as members, to also help as much as you
can.There have been a few other changes I need to mention. The Editor of The
Arizona Orchidist is now Nancy Burnett. Should anyone wish to contribute to
our newsletter, please get the information to Nancy by the 15th of each
month - the deadline to be included in the following month's newsletter. I
wish to thank Ken Gettys for all of his efforts while serving as the Editor
for the past year. Ken jumped in and volunteered to put it together for us
and did a fine job. Nancy has now done the same, volunteering her wizardry
to make all the contributions to the newsletter look good! Thank you both!
When news got out that I was the new President, I had three people volunteer
to handle the raffle. Obviously I won't be able to do that any longer. I
wish to thank Julie Rathbun, Jane Heckel, and Peggy Stejskal for stepping
forward to help. I am delegating ALL of them to work with the raffle
tickets just in case one of them can't attend a meeting. Thank you ladies!
Raffle donations for the March meeting were: Catherine Nelson, the family
of Bernice Ehrlich, Willie Stimmell, Gerda Gallob, Joe Civello, and OSA.
Please don't forget to contribute to the raffle table if you are able. We
only have great raffle if there are items on the table!
On March 26th, Willie, Nelda Caldwell, and Candy Pelz will be attending the
Arizona Federation of Garden Clubs' West Central District meeting. They
will be participating in the meeting and luncheon to follow. Willie - bless
her heart - will be filling in for Cathy/me as I am unable to attend. Candy
has volunteered to put together a table centerpiece - something that says
"orchids." All of the garden clubs have been asked to furnish a centerpiece
for the meeting/luncheon, and we are lucky to have someone with such
I have been told that Gerda's group, The Keiki Club, met again this month.
Their group has 10 members. During the meeting, they pollinated a vanilla
flower! Gerda has a culture sheet on the vanilla orchid and has forwarded
copies to OSA. If you are interested in obtaining a copy, they shall be
available at the next meeting!
Coming in August is a field trip to the VAMC greenhouse (Veteran's Affair).
We are inviting any and all of our members to join us in a caravan to
Prescott to see the greenhouse. For those unaware, the greenhouse exists
due to the efforts of former members of OSA. Our society has maintained a
liaison with VAMC, providing them with orchids, supplies, and support. VAMC
has always felt as if they have been adopted by OSA and we will continue to
enrich the lives of those who live there. The residents really do love
company and companionship, and we provide both with our visits to Prescott.
Please mark it on your calendar for August 7th (a Saturday).
Did anyone see the article in the Tribune on Orchids and OSA? In addition
to several quotes from our members, there were photos of Joe Freasier and
Scott Emerson. The article appeared in the Saturday, March 13, edition of
the Tribune. Cathy Nelson helped arrange for this article to be published,
and our hats are off to her for the exposure!
Members are invited to attend the celebration of the development of the
Heritage Rose Garden. This event will be held May 1, Saturday, from 10:00
a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the Maricopa County Extension Office, 4341 E. Broadway
Road. This garden is dedicated to the preservation, culture and study of
Heritage Roses - roses originating in the 19th century or earlier. The
Heritage Rose Garden has 79 varieties of roses. It should also be noted
that if you would like to see the Heritage Rose Garden and May 1 does not
meet with your schedule, the Heritage Rose Garden is open to the public at
all times. If you have further questions about this event, you may call
John or Mary Rich, 380-6840, or Floyd Evans, 944-2198.
Also mark on your calendars to stop by Home Base at 9890 N. 90th Street,
Scottsdale, on April 2 and 3. OSA will be providing culture sheets and
conversation (education) about orchids to interested customers. We will not
be selling plants, but will be there as a support group for the customers of
Home Base who have purchased or will be purchasing orchids from them. We
are always appreciative of whomever could help. Really, it is painless.
Again, I wish to thank everyone who has sent me their words of encouragement
and stated their beliefs in my abilities to complete Cathy's Presidential
term. I will try to live up to your expectations for the benefit of our
society. I will work as hard as I can and, hopefully, can expect YOU to do
RECAP OF MARCH PROGRAM
Those members present at the March meeting met a very enthusiastic guest
speaker, William Rhodehamel. Mr. Rhodehamel is the owner of Hoosier Orchids
- a wonderful source of orchids (available via FedEx by the way). Mr.
Rhodehamel spoke on warm growing species, which are appropriate for growing
in Arizona. He also brought lots of plants for us to auction off via the
silent bid process. I sure hope everyone managed to get a plant or two. He
did bring some nice ones and was very knowledgeable when asked about a
specific plant's color, growth habit, and culture.
Mr. Rhodehamel presented a beautiful slide presentation and narrated very
interesting facts on the various orchids. One item I particularly found
interesting was that he expanded the elements necessary to grow orchids from
the traditional water, air, temperature and humidity. Mr. Rhodehamel
indicated that the elements needed to create a growing climate for your
orchids include nine items. They are: 1) the growing space; 2) light;
3) temperature control; 4) humidity AND air movement; 5) potting
practice AND water supply; 6) nutrient supply; 7) hygiene AND problem
(pests) control; 8) consistency of treatment; and 9) observation. This
list is logically more correct and should one follow this growing strategy,
it would make sense that your orchids could be very happy. Of course,
remember what Mr. Rhodehamel said, don't change everything at once. Take an
idea and integrate it into your routine. Make sure it works for you before
adding another element. His recommendation of "consistency of treatment"
and "observation" are, in my opinion, his best practices.
For those of you wishing to order a catalog (and orchids) from Mr.
Rhodehamel's company, please correspond to: Hoosier Orchid Company, 8440
West 82nd Street, Indianapolis, IN 46278, or phone toll-free (888)
291-6269, e-mail: HYPERLINK mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com
Thank you, Norma Kafer, for obtaining him as a speaker. From what I heard
from our members, everyone seemed to enjoy him!
Lou Ann Remeikis
Special thanks to Ron Norman for providing transportation for our March
speaker, William Rhodehamel.
SPEAKER FOR APRIL Carl A. Olson>/P>
I received my B.S. in Zoology in 1969 from Miami University and an M.S. in
Biology from Marshall University in 1972. I have been at the University of
Arizona since 1975 as Associate Curator of the research collection,
Assistant in Extension, and Lecturer. I have taught aquatic entomology, a
beginning course for non-majors entitled Insects & Society and have
co-taught with several faculty in various labs. I also work through the
Extended University teaching a beginning course in Entomology.
My extension work includes handling the Insect Identification Laboratory,
IPM Specialist for Pima County (and many others), running workshops for
Master Gardener Programs in Arizona, providing the media (TV, radio and
newspapers) with information about new bug problems and other related
topics. I also work with the public schools, FFA, 4-H and many local
organizations giving lectures. I have been involved with many segments of
KUAT's program The Desert Speaks, most recently talking about the many
positive sides of having spiders in an urban setting and dispelling the
myths about these wonderful animals.
I have co-authored a book (1994) with my former colleague and mentor Floyd
G. Werner entitled Learning About and Living with Insects of the Southwest
published by Fisher books and available at most bookstores. It has received
many favorable comments from people throughout Arizona and other states
throughout the southwest. Also, I have authored or co-authored papers on
many different insects in the southwest, from cockroaches to palm borer
beetles, scorpions to stoneflies, insects in packrat middens to ticks & Lyme
disease. I was a consultant for the Biosphere when it was an interesting,
novel place to look at the big picture of Ecology.
I enjoy volleyball, bicycle riding, hiking and the Arizona sunsets in my
backyard. My passion is changing people's attitudes towards insects, hoping
they will someday realize that without this microfauna, the rest of the
world will not exist.
Carl A. Olson, Associate Curator, Dept. of Entomology,
http://deadbugs.agforbes.arizona.edu/, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ
85721 FAX (520) 621-1150 Office (520) 621-5925
ANYONE FOR A VANDA SANDWICH?
Willie, Keith, Jim, and Norma traveled to the San Francisco Orchid Expo the
last weekend in February. This is a chronicle of their journey.
The weather forecast predicted rain, but all that happened was a hair
curling drizzle. We arrived in SF just before noon on Saturday. We met in
the lobby of the hotel and walked over to the show. Willie distributed
vendor badges that Del Pace had thoughtfully left. Willie and Keith were
Del's helpers and Jim and Norma were Dennis Olivas's (remember his
presentation last year?).
We were like kids in a candy store. Keith was a steady and careful buyer.
He'd scope out a plant, go back and look at it many times before he bought
it. He had on his shopping list a "small pink orchid" for his daughter,
Kaitlyn. Many times we'd hold up a small pink orchid asking "Is this it?"
only for Keith to shake his head. Jim was a totally impulsive buyer
(vendors loved him). He saw a couple of vandas and bought without thinking
how they would get home. They were LARGE. Willie kept her nose to the
ground sniffing out bargains or half-off sales. She was so well known for
her bargaining ability that vendors reduced their prices immediately when
she walked into their booth. One just shook his head and lowered his
prices. Another said, "Just take what you want." Willie, of course, was in
We scooped up the plants that were resting at the "plant hotel" (we really
needed a cart) and waited for our ride back to the real hotel. And we
waited and we waited. Keith was holding a box of plants like a waiter in
one hand and in his other hand he had a bunch of vandas. Norma had vandas
and another box. And we waited. Willie had more plants. We finally
hitched a ride with Dennis, our plants and persons folded up on the floor in
the back of his van.
At the hotel we met Del and all went out to dinner with Dennis, our host for
the evening. We went to a small Chinese place where our first dish was
fried shrimp, then soup, then other dishes came to our table with great
regularity. So many that nobody could remember them all. Del loved the
sweet chicken dish, Jim liked the Mongolian beef, Norma liked the noodles,
Celine, an associate of Dennis, liked the veggie platter. During this Jim
asked if Willie might not be feeling well as she was unusually quiet. She
quickly got her second wind after eating and was in her best form again.
Sunday we went to Mel's diner for breakfast and took the scenic walk to the
show. Sales and people were slow when we got there, but after a while it
picked up to a frenzied pitch the closer it got to closing time. Word
spread like wild fire of a 50% off box. Willie was swallowed into the
crowd, then Keith disappeared. Norma kept to the safety of Del's booth.
Keith and Willie reappeared with boxes of plants and smiles on their faces.
Sunday night after dinner, Del supervised the packing of the coffin boxes
that Norma had shamelessly begged from Siam Sam the vanda man. Willie had
brought packing material, so we thought we were in pretty good shape. We
put the big vandas in the box with lots of shredded paper, more plants, more
packing material, more plants... Willie asked if anyone wanted a vanda
sandwich to accompany the wine. We closed the last suitcase, Keith taped
the last box, and we struggled back to our rooms wondering what the maid
would think with all the shredded bits of paper on the floor.
We all arrived back in Phoenix safely with plants for the Gardener's World
Garden Party. Mission accomplished!
Big thanks go to OSA members Del Pace and Dennis Olivas for their
assistance. Among the many kindnesses they extended to the "plant hunters
from Arizona," Del also served as our plant-packing advisor, and Dennis
treated us to the finest Chinese meal we've ever eaten.
Special thanks to the following growers for giving OSA significant price
reductions on plants for sale at Gardener's World Garden Party
Bill Bergstrom, John Oka
OSA COMMUNITY SERVICE REPORT
by Wilella Stimmell, CSP Coordinator
On February 26, OSA participated in the Second Youth Gardening Conference -
"Get Growing" Track - which was held at The Farm Institute at South
Mountain, in Phoenix. Ann Cherny, Jane Heckel, Norma Kafer, Julie Rathbun,
Lou Remeikis, and I presented four programs for 70 educators who had come to
the conference to learn some tips on how to inspire children to WANT to grow
plants. It was very simple to slightly alter the programs we usually
present for school children. As we do in our school programs, we began
each "rotation" (program) with brief comments about the beautiful, blooming
display plants that we had placed on a table. When we began assisting the
"students" with the repotting of their phal seedlings, a funny thing
happened! They had every bit as much fun working with the plants as
children have! They readily saw how much their students would enjoy such a
hands-on program. Our programs are designed to stimulate an interest in
growing orchids, but the mini-greenhouses we fashion out of empty milk or
water jugs can be utilized for any other newly repotted seedlings. The use
of recycled items appealed to the educators.
After our program presentations, we received the following e-mail message
from Leslie Honaker, Conference Coordinator: "THANK YOU! I know people
were thrilled at what you offered, and I know some of your 'kernels' of
knowledge will be passed on to other schools." ( Participants from
Califomia, Colorado, New Mexico, and Arizona attended our programs. One
teacher from the Yuma area said that she couldn't wait to get home and
contact the Plant Inspection Station. She said she knew that artificial
lights are routinely confiscated at the station and that they would be
"perfect" to use in her classroom. We gave her a culture sheet on how to
grow plants under artificial lights.)
When we bring blooming orchids to schools, it is often the first time
students have ever seen orchids. However, many students have no doubt heard
about the destruction of rain forests and the need for conservation. It
seems logical that conservation and preservation will never be of REAL
concern to anyone unless he/she has had some meaningful contact with
something that is (or used to be) found in rain forests. Our school
programs are designed not only to bring joy and attention to the students,
but also to connect in the minds of the students, their personal experience
with potting a seedling, the memory of beautiful blooming plants, and the
subjects of conservation and preservation.
On March 9, we presented three programs at Morristown Elementary School, in
Morristown, for the entire student body of 97 students - pre-school through
8th grades. Nancy Burnett, Norma Kafer, Keith Mead, Julie Rathbun, Lou
Remeikis, Peggy Stejskal, and I thoroughly enjoyed working with the
enthusiastic students. We worked with the children in the school's
cafeteria, where there was a handy water supply. After the first group
returned to their classrooms with their freshly repotted seedlings and
greenhouses in hand, the lead teacher stood outside the cafeteria and rang a
brass hand bell to signal the beginning of the next period. At the sound of
the bell, the second group of children RACED with their empty milk jugs in
hand, to the cafeteria. In this group of students there was a familiar
face! It was OSA member, Niki Hamilton, who proudly wore her OSA name badge
and smiled from ear to ear. Niki and her classmates had made a banner for
"Thank You Orchid Society of Arizona, Inc. For Coming to Our School!"
She and all her classmates had signed their names in the margins. One of
the boys in this group of students asked us if he could keep his orchid
"forever." He couldn't believe that the orchid he repotted was his to keep
and care for! All the students were genuinely enthusiastic throughout the
programs, whether they were sniffing our fragrant display plants or
repotting their very own seedlings. Because we had seven members assisting
in the programs, we could give the students individualized attention. Each
teacher at the school was presented with a phal culture book (courtesy of
Bob Gordon!) for his/her classroom.
Following our programs at Morristown School, we received the following
e-mail message from Lucy Thompson, lead teacher: "Greetings from Morristown
School! The students really enjoyed learning about and becoming caretakers
of orchids We are detecting a lot of green-thumb enthusiasm on campus! The
whole orchid experience is sure to be a memorable one for each child. I
certainly appreciate the energy and generosity of the members of OSA.
Thanks again! "
On March 12, Norma Kafer and I presented a program for the Washington Garden
Club monthly meeting which was held at the Valley Garden Center. Our
display plants were greatly admired! In fact, the ladies were so impressed
at the sight of Norma's Dendrobium Spring Dream 'Apollon' that they passed
around the plant tag and wrote down the name. The blooming doorprize plant
was a paphiopedilum donated by Phillip Liu. Thank you, Phillip! At the
conclusion of the program, we were presented with a small token of WGC's
appreciation. Since we do not accept gratuities, this item will be placed
on our April raffle table. (Washington Garden Club also works with school
children. They furnish "Grow Labs" for various schools in the Phoenix metro
New Addition to OSA's Community Service Schedule: On May 18, we will
present a program at Squaw Peak School, 4601 N. 34th St., Phoenix. There
will be 28 first and second grade students participating in the program
which is scheduled for 12:30 p.m.
(During our programs at the Youth Gardening Conference, we mentioned that we
had ONE date left for a program - in May - before the end of the school year
We also said that we operate on a "first come, first serve" basis. The
teacher from Squaw Peak School obviously made a mental note of that.)
Our next community service program is scheduled for April 6 for the
Hassayampa 4-H group that meets at the Wickenburg High School Library. This
is our first evening program (7:30 p.m.), and there will be 35 children with
empty milk jugs in hand eager to repot orchid seedlings. Any OSA member is
welcome to participate in this and/or any of our "outreach" programs.
(A report on the program for the 4-H group and the program for the John C
Lincoln Adult Day Care Center on April 13, will appear in our May
1999 Fall Show and Orchid Sale
At the January Board Meeting some discussion was had and decisions made
regarding the 1999 Fall Orchid Show and Sale. Peggy Stejskal and Keith Mead
agreed to be the co-chairpersons. I volunteered to do the PR and
advertising, and Candy Pelz was unanimously elected (in abstentia) to be the
A southwestern theme was agreed upon, but it took 2-1/2 months to come up
with a title. This year's show will forever be known as Southwest Orchid
Sunset. The dates of the show are November 13 and 14 with November 12 as
the setup date.
The first planning meeting was held on March 14 at Peggy's house (Thank you
Peggy!) and the following members attended: Willie Stimmell, Keith Mead,
Candy Pelz, Jane Heckel, Norma Kafer, Gail Jessell, Ralph Tanner, Peggy
Stejskal, Bob McCleod, Lou Ann Remeikis, and myself, Nancy Burnett.
Candy Pelz once again came up with some great vignettes for displaying the
orchids. Of these she will select 4 or 5 as the vignettes to be erected for
the show. She is going to make a list of items and materials needed to
construct them (so don't throw out anything southwestern until you see the
list). After much discussion about flyers, I agreed to design 3 or 4 and
let the group decide which one(s) to use.
The next Fall Show planning meeting will be May 23 at Peggy's house. As
with the Board meetings, you're invited to attend.
Overheard at the Planning Meeting:
"I wanted to shred some fir bark to get smaller pieces and I used my
Cuisonart. It didn't work too well!"
1 - OSA Meeting, 7 pm
2&3- Home Base
9890 N. 90th Street, Scottsdale
6 - Hassayampa 4-H, 7:30 pm
Wickenburg High School Library
13 - John C. Lincoln Adult Day Care
Center, 10:30 am
303 E. Eva (just North of Dunlap)
1 - Heritage Rose Garden, 10am-3pm
4341 E. Broadway
2 - OSA Board Meeting
4 - Prince of Peace School, 1 pm
3641 N. 56th Street
6 - OSA Meeting, 7 pm
18 - Squaw Peak School, 12:30 pm
4601 N. 34th Street
23 - Fall Show Planning Meeting and
OSA Board Meeting