The Arizona Orchidist Newsletter 

published by
The Orchid Society Of Arizona, Inc.
Founding Editor Clarence S. Lindsten, 1966 

 
Newsletter

 

  

THE GROWER ON CALL FOR SEPTEMBER IS ED GAMARANO 878-

6962(Growers with internet access are encouraged to use the Questions and Answers link 
on OSA's web site. The URL for our web site is: http://welcome.to/orchidsocietyaz
 

NEXT OSA BOARD MEETING
Sunday, August 30, at the home of Marga Lemaire, 14601 N. 63rd Place, Scottsdale, at 1 p.m. The nearest major cross streets are Acoma, north of Thunderbird, and 64th Street.NEXT OSA SOCIETY 

MEETING
The next regular society monthly meeting will be Thursday, September 3, 1998, held at the Valley Garden Center, 1809 N. 15th Avenue, Phoenix, Arizona, (phone 252-2120). The meeting, open to
all plant enthusiasts, will start at 7:00p.m. 

 

FIELD TRIP UPDATE -- ARE YOU READY?

We have 40 members participating in our field trip to San Diego this year. We will meet at the America West ticket counter, Terminal 4 no later than 6:30 A.M. on Saturday, September 26 for our 7:53 A.M. departure. On arrival in San Diego we will be taken by bus to Quail Botanical Gardens to spend approximately 2-½ hours visiting their orchid sale. From Quail Gardens we will reboard our bus for the short journey to the San Diego Zoo where we will enjoy a guided tour of orchid sites on the grounds and the newly refurbished orchid house. Our return flight departs San Diego at 6:04 P.M.Last year there were food vendors at Quail Gardens offering hot dogs and drinks. There are numerous 
fast food locations at the San Diego Zoo and while we do not have a formal mealtime set aside, there should be ample time to grab a snack. Don't forget your shopping bags and packing materials.
Keith Mead

SEPTEMBER SPEAKER

Dennis OlivasDennis grew up on Kauai in Hawaii in the late 1950s and stayed through the 1970s. He has raised orchids since he was 12 years old. He left Hawaii and about 8,000 orchids in 1980 to work  for Tauck Tours, which conducted tours in Arizona. Two years later he went to work for an oil  company in the San Francisco Bay area. Prior to the 3,000 sq. ft. greenhouse, he raised 6,000 orchids  in his home. He will soon be a fully accredited, certified American Orchid Society Judge. He has served as President for the San Francisco Orchid Society, the Santa Cruz Orchid Society, and the Peninsula Orchid Society. He is currently serving another term as President for the Peninsula Orchid 
Society. He is a member of the AOS, Orchid Society of California, the Malihini Orchid Society, the Diablo View Orchid Society, and the Napa Valley Orchid Society. His presentation will be interactive with a lot of question and answer time followed by a quick slide show. The plant table will be an array of Paphiopedilums, Phragmepidiums, Cattleyas, and other genera. Plants will be from seedlings to blooming size.

Cheers, 
Norma Kafer

FROM THE PRESIDENT'S DESK

Wilella Stimmell

 

Members and guests at our August 6 program worked side-by-side potting seedlings from two flasks and seemed to enjoy another hands-on experience. Lou Ann Remeikis, our in-house Program Director, tried to answer as many questions as possible at the "work station," but if anyone wanted to ask her a question and did not have an opportunity to do so, you are welcome to telephone her at 892-0263 or send her an e-mail at lou_remeikis@tempe.gov. 

 

An excellent assortment of plants and orchid-related items was donated for our August  raffle table. DONATIONS were received from an anonymous non-member, the late Pat Isbell, the family of Bernice Ehrlich, OSA, Julie Rathbun, and me. Thanks to all donors and ticket buyers for continuing to support our raffle.SPECIAL THANKS is due Leith Plunkett for once again "riding to the rescue" and transporting OSA plants (he arrived ready for duty just 30 minutes after he received the surprise call for help) and to Phillip Liu and Shirley Engberg for assisting with the unwrapping of the plants for the August 6 silent auction/Low Desert Conference plant sale. Shirley had been an OSA member for just five months at the time she became duly "initiated" as a working member of our family. She tended and housed the plants destined for our silent auction table in her home, NOT a greenhouse. Every time she watered the plants, she removed them from their crates and carried them one by one outside to perform the watering ritual. Thanks, Shirley, for the tender loving care of our plants. Bob Engberg, a non-orchid grower, was very thankful that the plants in the five crates had NOT been purchased by his wife! 
 

THE LOW DESERT CONFERENCE at the Wigwam Resort, Litchfield Park, on August 7 & 8 gave OSA an opportunity to make contacts for future programs in public schools, as well as to reaffirm with Michele Schulze, Information Specialist at Boyce Thompson Arboretum, and Louisa Ballard, Volunteer Program Coordinator for the Arboretum at ASU, OSA's intention to continue to work with BTA and ASU. Our sale plants were greatly admired by the Master Gardeners, and we discovered that quite a few MGs are orchid growers! OSA members who assisted at the conference were: Norma Kafer, Phillip Liu, Keith Mead, Lou Remeikis, and me. Special thanks is due Diane Nowlin, a Master Gardener, who volunteered to help arrange our sale plants on our table! As a  reward for her assistance, we gave Diane an "IOU" with no expiration date for a free orchid consultation and/or house call.

 

OSA Members Travel to SedonaOn August 1, 13 members and 2 guests motored to Sedona to see Gerda Gallob's greenhouse and to conduct an abbreviated board meeting. Gerda has a spectacular view from her greenhouse! (The view from every window in her home is equally spectacular. Perhaps that's why she lives there?) We were impressed with the spotless condition of Gerda's greenhouse, and we filed away for future reference a few notes regarding features her greenhouse incorporates that we might also want to include in a greenhouse. Thanks, Gerda, for your warm hospitality.

 

Members information changes

 

Please change Alan Ladd's e-mail address to: ClipperAL@home.com. Also note by Harry Tolen's name in our roster (or save as a Bookmark), the new URL for his web site: http://members.home.net/htolen6066/htolen6066aug.html. In the e-mail wherein Harry notified us of his new web site location, he also offered to answer culture questions. As a "one-man show" (owner of Chula Orchids), Harry is a bit busy to agree to be "on the hook" to answer questions on other orchid web sites, but he will answer e-mail questions. 

 

September 26 Field Trip to the San Diego Orchid Fair Approaches!I mentioned at our August meeting that Greg Luetticke, one of the organizers of the SDOF, suggested that each OSA member bring a non-perishable food item to donate to a food bank that assists families whose loved ones are stricken with AIDS. Please don't forget to bring an item. It's the least we can do in exchange for FREE ADMISSION to the fair!

 

Letters from Wake Island(excerpts from e-mail messages from Chuck Zepp)"A word from Wake Island, way out here in the Pacific. This is an orchid paradise! The weather is ideal and no greenhouse is needed. This is where I got the orchid craze. I have about 20 plants here-most sent to me from Maui by my daughter. Most of the orchids that have been here for ages are the tall dendrobium type with purple blooms, so I have introduced a much shorter dendrobium grown by Bill Baleitz on Maui. The day temperature here is 90 degrees, with 60-80% humidity. I'll be back in time to enjoy the (Sept. through Nov.) meetings." Received on August 3, 1998."...(the information Chuck sent) might not be too interesting to many except some of the older guys who may have passed through here during World War II. I will try to send a picture of the island so they can remember back  to the good old days. It is raining now-one of those light, warm tropical rains that the orchids eat up. There's nothing like warm rain for moisture! My job here is to keep all the people on the island in good health, and if they have a breakdown, I try to find the part that is not working. As a Medical Officer here, I don't have too much to do, but there are occasional surprises, such as a submarine surfacing to discharge a sick man to us. That is a rarity. So long from Wake Island, where America's day begins." Received later on August 3, 1998."

 

The center bay here sits in the crater mouth and over the millennia, everything has corallized. It is a beautiful setting. The (U.S.) Army uses the island for refueling mostly and for an occasional missile launch into Kwadulaine about 750 miles south of here on the equator." Received on August 5, 1998.Thanks, Chuck, for broadening our horizons! 

Some other details about Wake Island that our readers might find interesting: The island is located halfway between Honolulu and Guam. Before it was known as Wake Island, its name was Halcyon Island. During World War II, the island was given the name Wake. The significance of the name is clear when you read the last sentence in Chuck's second letter. During the war, the island served as an aircraft refueling station. In October 1994, Wake Island Air Force Base was transferred to the Army and renamed Wake Island Missile Launch Facility.The land mass of the island constitutes about 3 square miles. The triangular atoll is an unincorporated territory of the U.S. and is made up of the 3 small coral islands of Wake, Peale, and Wilkes, built up on an underwater volcano. The central lagoon is the former crater. The islands are part of the rim. The average elevation is less than 12 feet from sea level. There are occasional typhoons in the area. Civilian weather service personnel (U.S. and Thai contractors) study the number of lightning strikes on the island by the month, day, and hour. However, not to worry. Chuck said that he had witnessed few thunderstorms, and last year he was on Wake for 6 months.

 

Nature Conservancy Happenings

 

"The Arizona Water Protection Fund, a program of the state's Department of Water Resources, awarded the chapter two grants to restore 900 acres of riparian and flood terrace communities at Bingham Cienega and Buehman Canyon Preserve in the San Pedro River ecosystem. Restoration work began this spring at Bingham with the help of Americorps and other volunteers." "Landmarks." Nature Conservancy, September/October, 1998, page 7. Rescheduled Date of San Pedro River Preserve Dedication:The original date set for the dedication was April 4. If you were registered for the April dedication and requested that your $20 fee be allocated to the rescheduled date, you need not take further action. You will receive a registration form in the mail. However, if you were not registered for the original dedication, there is still time to do so. The new registration deadline is October 2, 1998. The rescheduled dedication is set for Saturday, October 24, 1998, 10:30 a.m.-12 noon. Registration forms will be available at our September meeting.Possible Field Trip to Ramsey Canyon: Several OSA members have expressed an interest in a field trip to Ramsey Canyon in southeastern Arizona, near the town of Hereford. The main object of such a trip is to see the native orchids on the 
preserve, in full bloom . The new naturalist and restoration ecologist at Ramsey, Mark Pretti, is compiling data that will help us plan a successful trip. The tentative time for the trip is the latter part of June, 1999. Please notify any OSA board member if you are interested in participating in a trip to Ramsey. Meantime, some of you may be aware that Ramsey will be closing the preserve this fall to rehabilitate habitats and facilities. It seems that Ramsey has been a victim of its success. When asked to speculate on the possible reason why the native orchid populations have recovered 300% in the Canelo Hills Preserve while the orchid populations at Ramsey had declined, Mark stated that he was "not surprised because there is less 'traffic' at Canelo". The latter is not as accessible or as "inviting" (no cabins or other accommodations nearby) to people as is Ramsey and the land was more recently made into a preserve. Ramsey was the nation's first National Natural Landmark and all serious "birders" know of and/or have visited the preserve. Located in the Huachuca Mountains, Ramsey is frequented by more than 170 species of birds, including 14 species of hummingbirds. To undertake the rehabilitation of Ramsey, the efforts of many conservancy volunteers are needed for data entry, trail work, riparian 
restoration, exotic weed control, and other areas. See our October newsletter for more details about participating in the restoration work scheduled for Ramsey.The Awakening of the Conscience of Growers to the Need for Conservation and Habitat Preservation"...Many of the [orchid] collectors...added to our knowledge of orchids and went through many dangers and difficulties in search of them. Some fell victims to pestilential climates and fatigue and were martyrs for the cause of horticulture; such men as the brothers Lobb, Hartweg, J.G.Veitch, Col. Benson, O'Reilly Pearce, Bowman, Wallis, Linden, Skinner, Hugh Low, Warscewicz, and others had in view the advancement 
of science. It is much to be regretted that collectors who followed them cared little about plants. Their one aim was to enrich their own pockets and they seemed determined to exterminate the race of orchids in their natural localities. Vast quantities were uprooted and arrived in a decayed condition, carelessly packed and crowded together only to perish. Many of those who purchased them knew nothing about their native surroundings or habits of growth. B.S. Williams and Dr. Lindley at Kew in the Royal Horticultural Society worked hard to discover their successful cultivation. It was hoped that when this was established the wretched work of destruction would cease and hybrids would be raised among the species already collected, but for some time it gave a fresh impulse to take still more from their native forests. Then a lull in the work of destruction was felt and we had hopes that the cruel work by ruthless men would cease. I was therefore horrified to find that such was not the case, for my attention was drawn to a book entitled The Odyssey of an Orchid Collector. He states that he came upon a large tract of the most beautiful orchids in the Philippines and he dispatched 47,000 plants in his first consignment to Manila; they got away with 500 loads-the largest number ever shipped from the Islands. He goes on to write, 'It seemed like desecrating the loveliest garden the Lord ever made and I was to root it up, tear it down, parcel it and sell it off. It seemed like blood money to me while I was waiting for payment, but I am bound to confess that a big fat wad of notes-of a fatness undreamed of-entirely altered my views. I still remember what my friend the orchid buyer said about the way the consignment was packed.' The orchids in question, he states, were found near the coast of Northern Luzon. Of the last species named [Phalaenopsis rosea] he reports that he only found about...[twenty plants]. He learned Zamboanga was already depleted and that Daxao was no better. He started on a fresh trail 
and took a steamer to Colabato for what he terms the upper district. The hunt was a success, although the first 200 plants were lost by the capsizing of a boat, but he brought us, he tells us, a magnificent lot to Zamboanga and thence to Singapore, where they were shipped to England.Around Zamboanga itself Japanese collectors had cleared the district and another locality where they grew formerly in plenty was cleaned out. No lover of orchids can read such a shameless, unblushing account as this without feeling indignant. It is high time that the protection of orchids should be more rigorously enforced in all parts of the world and greater efforts made to preserve what we have left to us." The date this article, "Orchid Destruction," appeared in publication was not sometime within the past 20 years, which many orchidists believe represents the awakening of our conscience to habitat preservation. The date was September, 1936! It appeared on page 33 of the September 1936 issue of The American Orchid Society Bulletin. Culture Corner

Those who purchased  plants of Beallara Tahoma Glacier at our August 6th meeting or at our June 4th meeting might want to know about the culture of this orchid with the huge, spectacular, rather star- shaped, white blooms with red centers.The genetic pool in Beallara combines the genera: Brassia x Cochlioda x Miltonia x Odontoglossom. The first Beallara Oncidiinae intergeneric hybrid, Beallara Vashon, was registered in 1970 by the Beall Co. of Washington (state). However, Beallara was named by W.W. Goodale Moir and May A. Moir of Honolulu, Hawaii, in honor of Ferguson Beall, a friend and fellow hybridizer. The Moirs hybridized Beallara Tahoma Glacier and were amazed by the unusually large size of the flowers and the floriferousness (number of flowers) of the hybrid. The female or pod parent, the dominant genetic influence (more inherited characteristics appear in the 
offspring), was Miltassa Cartagena. The pod parent of Mtssa. Cartagena was Brassia verrucosa (the "grandmother" of Bllra.Tahoma Glacier). The pollen parent of Mtssa. Cartagena was Milt. Anne Warne, which was hybridized by using two warm-growing miltonias-bluntii x spectabilis.

 

The cultural tips for the cultivation of Brassia Edvah Loo that appeared in our August newsletter are valid for the successful culture of Bllra. Tahoma Glacier: ample air circulation and humidity of a minimum of 40% around the plant, grow with cattleyas or a mixed collection of intermediate to warm growers, weakly fertilize while the plant is in  active growth, cut back on watering after the new growths have matured, and after new flower spikes appear, resume liberal watering. Because there is a dominant brassia influence in the parentage of Bllra. Tahoma Glacier, resist the urge to repot the plant unless the medium has decomposed and/or there is no room for the roots of the new growth in the pot. Remember that brassia roots should be disturbed as little as possible. (For further reading about Oncidiinae intergenerics, see Creating Oncidiinae Intergenerics, by W.W. Goodale Moir and May A. Moir, published by the University Press of Hawaii, 1982.)

 

For Your InformationSeveral of our members and guests who noted the picture on the flask of  Dendrobium Joseph Teresi seedlings used at our August meeting, commented on the similarity of the flower shape to that of Phalaenopsis (the genus) blooms. There is a species of Dendrobium which some growers still refer to as phalaenopsis. The "phalaenopsis shape" was contributed to the genetic pool of D. Joseph Teresi from Dendrobium bigibbum (synonym Dendrobium phalaenopsis). Without delving into the taxonomic controversy of whether a Dendrobium hybrid contains D. bigibbum or D. bigibbum variety phalaenopsis, it appears that many veteran orchid growers still refer to any Dendrobium hybrid that has the shape of a "phalaenopsis" flower as having D. phalaenopsis in its parentage. Dendrobium phalaenopsis (the species) hybrids can be grown under Phalaenopsis (the genus) conditions and will tolerate less light than various other Dendrobium species and hybrids.

 

OSA WEBSITE

By now you know that we have a web site (unless you spend all your time with your orchids). And the web site could use your help. Don't have internet access? No excuse. If you have internet service then invite a member over to see the site. There are several ways all members can help. We are in need of orchid photos (with the names of both the plant and the photographer). Also I would like to start a member's corner. I'm looking for articles about a variety of subjects-first orchid, first blooming orchid, how you got started in orchids, a show you attended, your secrets on growing orchids, a trip you took, etc. 

Here is your chance for your 15 minutes of fame, which will last for years on the web.When I volunteered to do the web site, I was thinking along the lines of something simple that included OSA meeting information and a few e-mail contacts. As so often happens, the site just grew, kind of like buying only one orchid plant. The website now contains our newsletters, culture sheets, photo gallery, information about OSA, question-and-answer page, upcoming events, and a guest book. You can even send an orchid postcard to your friends with notification of when the postcard was picked up.

 

If you can think of an area we've missed or an idea you would like to see added to our website, send me an email. I'm working on updating the website now with some new stuff. Unlike a greenhouse, we have all the space we can ever use. 

 

For those of you that like statistics: The web site has about 18 visitors a day. That's over 800 visitors since July 1, 1998. We have had visitors from France, Australia, Canada, China, Finland, and England. The preferred browser is Netscape 4 (76%). And the operating system is Windows 95 (90%). We have had only one visitor using Windows 98. The website has been recognized with 25 awards, some of which I have posted on the site.When you visit our website be sure to VOTE for the (snin's top 100 sites). The higher our ranking the more surfers visit our site. You may VOTE every time you visit the site.The web site address is http://welcome.to/orchidsocietyaz. Check it out. You can email me at: jimni-5@usa.net or jimcj@ix.netcom.com.---Jim Johnson