Orchid Society displays its special blooms in Winchester

LATE BLOOMERS Colder temperatures have arrived, but if you want to revisit the sights and smells of blooming flowers, you’re in luck.

The annual show of the Massachusetts Orchid Society is Friday through Sunday, Nov. 6-8, at Mahoney’s Garden Center in Winchester.

The 10,000-square-foot greenhouse contains exotic displays of blooming orchids from around the world to showcase this year’s “World of Orchids” theme.

“We are thrilled for this new and convenient location,” said Sasha Crotty, director of the society. “The space is gigantic and will be filled with thousands of rare and unusual orchids, all nestled among a world of green. It will truly be a sight to see.”

The show includes hourly tours of the displays; plant raffles; seminars and educational events; vendors of specialty orchids and growing supplies; orchid art; lessons on how judges award ribbons; and an opportunity to pick up a magnifying glass to study an orchid the size of your thumbnail.

“We are thrilled to introduce our prized plants to the public, and we hope to kindle some new interest into the amazing world of orchids,” said Crotty.

Founded in 1952, the Massachusetts Orchid Society is an educational nonprofit with members whose interests range from simple appreciation of orchids to technical involvement in orchid breeding and taxonomy.

Most are active growers who produce flowers under conditions ranging from window sills to artificial light gardens to automated greenhouses.

The society holds meetings the second Tuesday of each month at the Sons of Italy, 117 Swanton St., Winchester.

The show at Mahoney’s, 242 Cambridge St., runs 1 to 5 p.m. Friday; 9 to 5 p.m. Saturday; and 9 to 4 p.m. Sunday.

Admission is $10, free to ages 8 and younger and society members. Visit massorchid.org and mahoneysgarden.com.

WAX ON An exhibition of new works by encaustic painter Nancy Tobey is at downtown Lowell’sMandarin Asian Bistro Monday, Nov. 2 through Jan. 2.

Originally a fused-glass artist, Tobey has recently turned to mixed-media painting and works with found objects, beeswax, wax-based paint, oil, ink, and graphite.

“I am energized by colors and marks made on the surface of the wax,” she said. “I let my mind drift through those colors and marks, and then I let that energy move through to my work.”

Tobey has taught glass bead making throughout New England, New York, and in Ireland and has works in permanent collections at the Sandwich Glass Museum in Massachusetts and the Kobe Lampwork Glass Museum n Japan. She works out of Western Avenue Studios in Lowell.

An opening reception with the artist is 4 to 6 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 8, at 24 Market St. Visit mandarinasianbistro.com.

NOTES OF HOPEPennies for Poverty hosts its third annual Music for Change on Saturday, Nov. 7, in Newburyport.

The event features EJ Ouellette & Crazy Maggy, a fiddle-driven, hybrid roots dance band that plays original rock, Americana, and Celtic, Acadian, and Cajun-infused tunes.

Thomas Machine Works Band and Liz Frame each perform opening sets.

Music for Change is the biggest fund-raiser of the year for Pennies for Poverty, a volunteer-run nonprofit that strives to help individuals and families in Newburyport and surrounding areas.

Local restaurants will provide a buffet of small plates, and a silent auction includes items from businesses, artists, craftspeople, and sports organizations.

The event begins at 6:30 p.m. at the Elks Lodge, 25 Low St.

Tickets are $25 in advance and available at Dyno Records, 1 Middle St., Newburyport, or at musicforchange.yapsody.com. Tickets at the door are $30. All proceeds go directly to Pennies for Poverty.

*Source: Boston Globe

Get an orchid of your own

Want an orchid named after you? Yes, you can have one – for a price.

Head to local nurseries which offer hybrids for naming. Orchid breeders here say more people are shelling out from a few thousand dollars to north of $30,000 for an orchid named after them.

However, Mr Teo Woon Cheng, 43, of Woon Leng Nursery, says it is still very much a “niche market”, even after a decade of offering this service. The nursery has named about 10 orchids after clients so far this year, including one as an engagement gift.

Meanwhile, Toh Garden, a tropical orchid grower in Lorong Pasu, created the Papilionanda Chua Chu Kang for the constituency – a first in Singapore. The purple flower, which has curled petals, is related to Singapore’s national flower, Vanda Miss Joaquim. It was commissioned for SG50.

Toh Garden’s manager, Mr Zhuo Hongyi, 31, says the nursery sees more corporations, such as hotels, which want personalised orchids as part of their branding collateral. It has also had requests from overseas clients, such as a professor from London who wanted an orchid for his wife’s 60th birthday.

He explains: “The orchid is symbolic of Singapore and people connect it with us. When they come to visit, they want an orchid that is made here. It’s like a signature – having your own makes it iconic.”

Getting your own hybrid named is fast. Mr Teo says that if an unnamed hybrid is available, it takes just one to two days to register it with the Britain-based Royal Horticultural Society.

The Orchid Society of South-east Asia, which is based here, can also help facilitate orchid-naming procedures. The society has access to local breeders and can help with the process of registering a new hybrid under the name you want. Go to www.ossea.org.sg to contact the society.

*Source: The Straits Times

Singapore launches new coins featuring its national flower orchid

SINGAPORE, Oct. 23 (Xinhua) — The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) announced that it has launched the 2015 Native Orchids of Singapore Coins on Friday.

The coins are the fifth and last in a series that celebrates the beauty of Singapore’s national flower.

The 2015 Native Orchids of Singapore Coins feature two native orchids, Dendrobium leonis and and Dendrobium secundum. The Dendrobium leonis has creamy yellow petals with a tinge of red, and a protruding broad lip, while the Dendrobium secundum is characterised by its flower sprays, comprising densely packed purplish pink flowers with a contrasting orange lip. The latter is also commonly known as the “Toothbrush Orchid”, MAS explained.

A portion of the circumference of each coin is semi-rimless, which is a unique feature of the coins in the series, MAS said, adding that the coins will be issued on Nov. 13.

*Source: Shanghai Daily

Colourful orchids are now at their finest

WITH lovely warm days, and surprising amounts of water in the rain gauge over the past few weeks, it’s no wonder so many plants are flowering so prolifically.

There’s also the exceptionally good fertilisers old and tried, as well as new garden-care products being released to protect our plants, ensuring they’re being well-supplied with their needs.

Orchids of all kinds have been flowering beautifully, and we’re very fortunate that we have friends across the road who have a wonderful collection of that incredible family of plants.

One of those on display in the front garden is Guarianthe aurantiaca: a big name for a small flower, as most would agree, but that’s the name of the exquisite form of orchid they have growing in a large basket, which has been flowering for months now.

According to our information, it is a Cattlya form, and if you have a particular yen to add one to your garden, we trust you will find some available here in one of our excellent garden centres or an orchid show.

What a wonderful Christmas or birthday gift it would make for some lucky recipient.

Anyone for cherry pie?

MOST people will recognise the delightful Heliotrope arborescens more easily remembered as Cherry Pie, which is a fast-growing shrub easily kept to about 80-90cm tall and wide with a good pruning following the flowering season.

These plants will thrive in most areas apart from heavy frost spots (thank goodness we don’t need to worry about that). Their flowering period is generally speaking from spring through to autumn, and the lavender/purple flowers have an enjoyable delicate perfume I’m told is similar to cooked cherries.

But whatever it reminds you of, it is just lovely.

These grow easily in well-drained soil in a sunny situation, and suit shrubberies, rockeries and low dividers.

They can be trained well in a central situation surrounded by white Dianthus, with perhaps some of the recently arrived sun-loving lavenders interspersed, and the host of gorgeous petunias available such as petunia Picasso in Pink, and/or the wonderful mixed Dianthus that flower for such long periods.

Don’t forget to use the Yates Thrive all-purpose pods to give them all plenty of nutrients to grow strong and flower well.

Great meeting spots

THE friends of Noosa Botanic Gardens work in their gardens on Lake Macdonald Drive, Cooroy, every Thursday from 8am.

These industrious folk all wearing their yellow shirts, work in the gardens, then gather at 9.30am for a break, and that’s where you can catch up with them.

They have get-togethers quarterly, organise arts, music, sporting and community events, and visit other beautiful gardens here, interstate and nationally.

For more information, phone 5474 3502, contact secretary@fnbg.com.au or go to www.noosabotanicgardens

*Source: Sunshine Coast Daily


Orchids from ‘best growers’ to be sold at Kansas club’s show

If you attended the old Wichita Garden Show, you remember the tables of colorful orchids that the Kansas Orchid Society used to have for sale at Century II.

The sale will return in a new forum this year, at the fall orchid show next weekend at Botanica. At past shows, vendors from other places used to come in and sell orchids. But now, “we’re going to have our own sales, with lots of different things that you won’t find available in the box stores, where people go a lot of times,” the society’s president, Karlene Sanborn, said. Proceeds from the sale will support the orchid society, which supports Botanica and orchid-conservation efforts.

“We go out and buy all the plants from some of the best growers in the United States,” said Sanborn, who herself owns Prairie Orchids in El Dorado.

“We’ll have phalaenopsis, paphiopedilums – the slipper orchids, angraecum – those particular plants originate in Africa, and one of them is called the Darwin orchid, pollinated by the large moths that fly around at night. We also will have onsidiums, and cattleyas that will be coming in from California. A lot of them will be mini cattleyas that will be wonderful to grow on your windowsill.”

Johnson’s Garden Center will be selling potting supplies, and an 85-year-old member of the society who is from Austria, Marlen McIntosh, will have items that she’s woven of wool or linen for sale.

You won’t have to spend any money to be enthralled, though. The show will feature orchids that will be judged by American Orchid Society judges.

“They’ll see between 200 and 300 blooming orchids that will be exhibited by the members and anyone else who shows up who wants to exhibit,” Sanborn said. From the winners will be chosen a separate group that will receive American Orchid Society awards.

The show and sale will be from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 31 and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Nov. 1 at Botanica. Admission to the show is free.

“Members are all knowledgeable and can answer questions and will have printed material. They’re always glad to talk about orchids.”

Sanborn has advice for anyone buying an orchid: Make sure you know the genus and the species. “Those things are important, because if you go and buy something and it just says ‘cattleya’ on it and nothing else, you’re not sure what you’re getting. They come from different parts of South America and growing conditions from the Andes to the ocean, with different rainfall and humidity, and our growers can discuss those elements of growing.

“Also it has to do with exhibiting orchids. If you have the full name and you know what its history and parentage is, you could win an AOS award if it makes all the criteria.”

Let us celebrate our cultural diversity, First Lady tell Kenyans

First Lady Margaret Kenyatta has urged Kenyans to choose to weave the country’s diverse cultures into a national tapestry of harmonious co-existence among the various ethnic communities.

The First Lady described the nation as an interdependent, inter-linked and colourful society that has a lot to learn from each other and take pride of the diverse languages, dress, diet and sports to socialize children among other important issues.

“The unique relationship and partnership between specific flowers, birds and insects for purposes of pollination is a good metaphor for Kenya,” she said.

The First Lady spoke during the official opening of the 2015 Kenya Orchid Society annual show at Sarit Centre, Westlands in Nairobi County.

She said the country’s diverse cultures were an asset in forging a strong national identity of a united nation, Kenya.

She said humankind has a lot to learn from the relationship between flowers, birds and insects as none of them can survive without the support of the other.

The First Lady congratulated the Kenya Orchid Society for developing an art competition for schools with the ultimate goal of increasing awareness of the special plants and flowers especially orchids, encourages campaigns against the destruction of forests.

She added, “I am deeply passionate about education and child welfare and feel encouraged that in the competition, the schools including those catering for underprivileged children are provided with art supplies to draw different species of orchids.”

The First Lady encouraged the Kenya Orchid Society to use all possible means including social media to raise awareness, promote conservation and re-introduce orchids in the wild.

The First Lady said, “Orchids are accessible to everyone and their beauty and diversity makes them an excellent ‘passport to the world’.”

“The diversity of these orchids is a cause for marvel.  There are 283 naturally occurring species in Kenya. Globally there are 30,000 naturally occurring species and 150,000 man-made species. ” the First Lady said.

She described orchids as amongst the most beautiful flowers of the entire plant kingdom, combining exotic looks with a diverse set of unique characteristics.

“As a great believer in the power of beauty, what I have witnessed here today is enough testimony that we are surrounded by natural beauty,” the First Lady said.

During the occasion, Kenya Orchid Society chairman Mr. Anand Savani donated sh. 500,000 to Wildlife-direct organization in support of “Hands off our Elephants” campaign.

The First Lady, who is a patron of the “Hand Off Our Elephants” campaign, thanked the organization for its generous contribution and assured that the funds will go a long way in saving elephants for posterity.

Environment and Natural Resources Cabinet Secretary Prof Judy Wakhungu also addressed the gathering.

*Source: KBC

Orchids in full bloom for Windsor show

Everything’s coming up orchids in Windsor-Essex this season.

The Windsor Orchid Society hosts its third annual show on Oct. 24 and 25 at the Columbus Centre where orchid enthusiasts from all over the province will show off more than one thousand of their best specimens.

“A lot of these orchids people wouldn’t see,” said Deborah Boersma, a member of the WOS in charge of promotions, whose collection of orchids has grown to more than 500 since she bought her first orchid plant about 20 years ago.

There are more than 25,000 different orchid species, according to Ed Cott, chair of the WOS, And there are four times as many hybrids.

Some of the dazzling orchid displays at the weekend show will go on to be crowned best in show by judges from the American Orchid Society, which is the official judging body on the orchid circuit in this part of the world.

“That’s unique for this area for sure,” said Cott, whose own orchid collection tops 1,000 plants. (He has to keep them in their own greenhouse.)

So what makes a winning orchid?

“Most of the time they’re solely looking at the flower,” Boersma said, adding that these plants are not purely from tropical regions. They grow in all kinds of climates, including Southwestern Ontario, where slipper orchids, a hardy orchid variety, can be spotted in the wild.

The plant has grown in popularity thanks in part to its affordability, Boersma said, and also to the plethora of information on the Internet.

But, Cott added, another thing that gets people hooked on orchids is the challenge.

You’ll start with the usual phalaenopsis (sometimes referred to as “the Costco orchid” because you can buy it pretty much anywhere) he said, and before you know it, you’re wondering if you can get a Dracula orchid — a notoriously difficult variety — to bloom in just the right conditions.

Vendors are coming from as far away as New York state, Ecuador and Taiwan this year.

Cott said photography enthusiasts have really taken to the special photographers-only session that runs on the Sunday morning of the show, where tripods are permitted.


The Windsor Orchid Society’s show runs Saturday, Oct. 24 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday, Oct. 25 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Columbus Centre, 2401 Columbus Dr. in Windsor. Sunday morning between 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. is the photographers-only session.

Admission is $6 for adults and free for children under 12. For details visit windsororchidsociety.ca or call 519-257-8009.

Source: Windsor Star

Sanibel Captiva Orchid Society kicked off season

The Sanibel Captiva Orchid Society started its 2015-16 season with the topic “Orchids at Home” on Monday, Oct. 19. The program was  presented by Marilyn Visussi of Marilyn’s Orchids in Fort Myers. The meeting took place at St. Michael & All Angels Episcopal Church on Sanibel.

Orchid novices were invited as the Fundamentals Session with  Bill Overton discussed “What’s in the Pot? Media for Where We Live.” He has been growing orchids for more than 40 years and is an accredited American Orchid Society judge.

Anyone with questions or an “ill orchid” that needed diagnosis were asked to bring their plants to the meeting during Show and Tell.

Ribbons were awarded for best hybrid and best species orchids. An orchid raffle was also held.

Colourful Orchids main attraction at an annual Iowa show

The Eastern Iowa Orchid Society held their fourth annual orchid show, bringing in eight competitors from six different states. White, yellow, pink, and nearly every shade of purple brightened the room of the Noelridge Greenhouse on Saturday.

Orchid Show Chair Andrew Coghill-Behrends was a member of the judging committee for the event.

Among the judges was the Orchid Show Chair Andrew Coghill-Behrends.

About eight societies participated by putting displays around the greenhouse with different kinds of orchids. More than 420 entries were judged in the show.

Coghill-Behrends said the Eastern Iowa Orchid Society spent months preparing.

“We had 10 members contribute plants to our society display,” he said. “We were here yesterday morning and we were here yesterday morning at 10 a.m. so we could have the display up and ready for the public today.”

People’s Choice Award has also been given to the best plant at the end of the day after everyone casted their ballots.

People not only viewed the orchids throughout the greenhouse, they also had the opportunity to buy their own.

It was Eastern Iowa Orchid Society who bagged the prize as the best one in the event.


Weekend Orchid Workshop for enthusiasts

Orchid hobbyists and orchid addicts unite!

Volcano Art Centre is holding a workshop on Oct. 17 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the Volcano Art Center’s Niaulani Campus.

Ben Oliveros, Larry Kuekes, and Shelby Smith from the Hilo Orchid Society will host the workshop.

Kuekes will discuss how to read orchid tags, while Oliveros will give hands on demonstrations for mounting, and Smith, a self-confirmed “orchid addict,” will be in line to answer any and all orchid related questions.

It is $25 workshop fee for the general public and $20 for VAC members. All participants will take home an orchid.

To register, call VAC at 967-8222 or visit the VAC website.