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April 9, 2018
of Washington Center for Urban Horticulture
This month's session will be presented by Mike Cory. His topic is the "Internet Orchid Species Photo Encyclopedia". Starts promptly at 7 p.m.
Brenda has just revised her presentation on Angraecoid Orchids. It begins with conservation and includes many images of species not readily available in cultivation that are critically endangered in nature. She will then give expert cultural advice so that we can be successful in growing angraecoids.
Brenda travels and gives talks about Angraecoids. Botanica Ltd. is owned and operated by Bill Nerison (architect) and Brenda Oviatt (former graphic designer). They began growing orchids in 1983 and over time their growing has evolved from a hobby into a two part business. One half of the business involves growing and selling orchids (primarily species) to other interested growers. The other half of the business is focused on the ex-situ propagation of endangered angraecoids and the education of hobbyists and growers concerned with the plight of many species of plants and animals from Africa and Madagascar.
There will be Preorders with a 10% discount if they are placed no later than April 3. Go to their website http://botanicaltd.com/. The plant lists may not be complete so please inquire about species and other plants you may be interested in acquiring that may not be on the website by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Brenda will also bring a “mini orchid show” and have additional sales at the meeting.
Bring your blooming Orchids so everyone can enjoy them.
The raffle will be held as usual. Win a new orchid for your collection while supporting the Scholarship Fund.
If you'd like to check out a book or tape from our Library, please contact our Librarian Joe Grienauer a minimum of 2 weeks before the next meeting. Besides email, you can give Joe your request at any meeting. For a list of library items Click on the Library link at the top left of this page or click HERE.
The Spokane Orchid Show and Sale is being held
this weekend, April 7-8, at the Spokane Community College, Student Lair. We are collecting plants Thursday to take for setup on Friday. Anything you can send will be appreciated and can be returned at the meeting on Monday. This will be a judged show and sales will include Bill and Brenda from Botanica as well as several other vendors. I don't have many of my own plants in bloom at present so please consider sending whatever you can. If you are unable to bring orchids to my house please call or email to make special arrangements.
If you plan on sending plants to the show, here are the
orchid registration forms to use for pre-registration. If you have the
PDF copy, do not use it for electronic registration. It can still be used
for delivery by other means.
details, see my comments in last months newsletter (http://newsletter.nwos.org/archives/index.htm)
and the Oregon Orchid Society website (http://oregonorchidsociety.org/).
Nominations are needed for the coveted annual
award for service to the NWOS during the past year. Nominations are invited
from all members. Names are to be submitted to me as 2nd Vice President.
Please submit your nominations to me by email no later than May 7th or at
the April meeting on Monday. It is suggested but not required that you
include some brief notes on the contributions made by the person or persons
& Garden Festival Notes
AOS Pacific NW Judging
Unless you joined since July 1, it's time to renew your membership. The NWOS membership year now goes by calendar year. During this transition year it will go from July 1, 2017 through December 31, 2018 (18 months). You can pay at most meetings by cash, check, or debit/credit card. You can mail a check (payable to NWOS) to PO Box 51021, Seattle, WA 98115-1021. You can also pay online using Paypal on our Membership page at http://newsletter.nwos.org/membership. New members should complete the Membership Form.
Dues are $30 for one
person or $40 for two people at the same address. We also have a Youth
membership of $15 for one person aged 22 or under. Dues are kept low
to encourage membership but they cover only a small portion of the society's
Please contact Mike Cory for questions about your dues.
Originally published in the April 2013 issue of Orchids Magazine
Prepared by the AOS Education Committee with Photographs by Greg Allikas
The Basics of Choosing a Fertilizer and Application
IF THEIR OTHER REQUIREMENTS are met, orchids will grow and flower for fairly long periods without fertilizer. Witness the people in tropical areas such as South Florida who grow them mounted on trees and let nature do the rest. Indeed, that is how epiphytic orchids grow in nature. But hobbyists generally try to give their orchids more than the bare minimum so that the plants flower at or above their potential.
There are many different points of view on how to fertilize orchids and what fertilizer to use. Everyone has a favorite fertilizer or supplement. There are so many variables that how and when you fertilize depends on what kinds of orchids you grow and how and where you grow them. This article will offer a brief explanation and general guidelines on fertilizing orchids. For more specific application, join your local orchid society and ask someone there who grows the same kind of orchids as you. It is unlikely that you will kill any orchids with orchid fertilizer so following the recommendations here will provide your plants needed nutrition.
If you are a gardener you are probably familiar with the N-P-K listings on fertilizer bags. Orchid fertilizers have them too. Let’s go over these three elements and see how they affect plant growth. Nitrogen (N) helps make plants green and helps them grow faster. It is the element responsible for vegetative growth (the leafy parts). Phosphorus (P) is good for root growth, disease resistance, seed and fruit growth, and especially for blooming and flowering. Potassium (K) helps with increasing root growth, drought resistance and disease resistance.
OPTIONS There are three main types of fertilizers used for orchids: balanced, high nitrogen and bloom booster.
◊ Balanced fertilizers have been traditionally recommended for use with orchids potted in inorganic potting media such as lava rock and Aliflor, and tree fern (which has fallen out of favor due to conservation concerns). Plants mounted on cork bark or other substrates also benefit from using a balanced fertilizer. An example of a balanced fertilizer would be represented by the numbers 20-20-20.
◊ High-nitrogen fertilizers have long been recommended for use with orchids potted in fir bark or fir bark mixes. The reason for extra nitrogen is that the bacteria that cause the bark to decay use up much of the available nitrogen, thus depleting the orchid. This practice has recently come into question. Nonetheless, using a high-nitrogen fertilizer, especially in spring at the beginning of the growing season, can promote strong vegetative growth under ideal conditions. An example of high-nitrogen fertilizer would be 30-10-10.
◊ Bloom or blossom-booster formulas are high in phosphorus. Typically, high-phosphorus fertilizers are applied every other week for four to six applications the season before expected bloom. For winter–spring blooming orchids, bloom booster is usually applied in the autumn. Vandaceous hybrids and other orchids that bloom throughout the year can be given bloom booster every third or fourth fertilizing. An example of a bloom booster would be 10-30-20. Fertilizers used on orchids should contain little or no urea. This is because soil organisms must first convert the nitrogen in urea to a form useable by plants, and since orchids do not grow in soil, this conversion does not occur efficiently.
There are requirements specific to certain orchids. For instance, do not fertilize nobile-type dendrobiums after early autumn. This rule actually applies to all orchids that have decided rest periods and all deciduous orchids. Fertilizing them while in their rest period keeps them in continual growth instead of resting before producing flowers. In other words, you may get a lot of growth and no flowers.
During this meeting a new slate of Executive Officers was installed, so make sure to read the message from our new AOS president, Susan Wedegaertner, in the April edition of Orchids magazine. We will be looking for host societies to carry on the tradition of our great spring and fall meetings. If your society would like any information about hosting an AOS meeting please send inquiries to: Affiliated_Societies@aos.org. We are here for your support and will work with you to make an event that is a success for all.
THE APRIL ISSUE - ORCHIDS MAGAZINE
Our annual Judging Issue will feature great articles and beautiful pictures on:
• Orchids Illustrated - Lorenz Oken
ALSO FEATURED IN ORCHIDS MAGAZINE!
Denise Lucero, Vice-Chair, AOS Membership and Affiliated Societies
Report from the March Auction & Potting Clinic
Mike Cory gave a very informative Orchid Basics discussion about how to safely bring new plants into your collection, a very timely topic given all the plants we would be taking home from the evening's auction.
Our President, Abigail Chang, opened the
meeting by welcoming new members and visitors who introduced themselves.
She reminded us about the Potting Clinic next week. George
Grantham asked us all to send him nominations for the Gary Baker Service
Award. He also thanked those that helped and contributed to shows
at other orchid societies. Abby made announcements about the
website. She then invited us to participate in the final Seattle
AOS Judging on Saturday.
Our members and their guests enjoyed a lovely wine and cheese party hosted by Peter and Kelly Maunsell. It was very nice to spend time socializing with our orchid friends.
Our auction kicked in with Auctioneers Joe Grienauer and Mike Pearson doing formidable jobs with the many plants brought in by our members. Abigail also helped out as auctioneer later in the evening. They were ably assisted by plant runners Al Kaas and Ellen Macomber. Pat Gossler and Erika Dyer recorded the bids and tallied our our totals while Chris Peterson processed our charges. It was a fun evening. We had some great refreshments, we made a little money, we spent a little money and we got some great new additions to our orchid collections. What could be better?
- Photos: Diane Drisch
Mike Cory began our session by demonstrating on an overgrown cymbidium. Showing each step along the way he took it out of the pot so we could check out the roots and old potting medium. He explained the 2 parts of a healthy root, how to trim off the old dead roots, why it's bad to have old medium. He also told us many things about how to repot including whether to divide it into several smaller plants or leave it as one large specimen plant. Then: what size pot, bulb placement in the pot, where are the new growths, and allowance for 1-2 year's growth without over-potting.
It's important to clean your tools in between each plant so you don't transmit disease like virus. You can get a small flame or use a gas stove. Or use new tools like a one-sided razor blade that you throw away after each plant.
He then discussed various potting media, small, medium or large. You choose depending on the roots and how much water retention is necessary. Since the current mix had Coconut husk, it needs to be rinsed well in hot water because of the salts it contains. We then got to see how to hold the plant in the pot, add media and press it into place.
Next up, Mike showed us how to deal with a phalaenopsis with wild roots. You re-pot when not in bloom and when new roots are starting to form. Sometimes you have to soak the roots to make them more flexible and able to fit into a pot.
Experienced NWOS members then partnered up with attendees to repot their plants. Advice was freely given and discussed amongst everyone if there were special questions. By first demonstrating, and then with hands-on action, we learned all about how to repot our orchids. They looked so much happier and healthier at the end of the evening.
April 7-8, 2018: Spokane Orchid Society Show and Sale, Spokane, WA (see article above)
April 9, 2018 - NWOS meeting - Speaker: Brenda Oviatt (Botanica Ltd), "Angraecoid Orchids - Keeping a Piece of Nature Alive"
April 14-15, 2018 - Treasure Valley orchid Society Show, Boise, ID
April 21-22, 2018 - Oregon Orchid Society Show and Sale, Portland, OR (see article above)
May 14, 2018 - NWOS meeting - Speaker: Wally Orchard, "Growing South African Disa"
June 11, 2018 - NWOS meeting - Annual Meeting, Gary Baker Service Award and Potluck Dinner
The schedule of Board Meetings for this membership year is: 5/8/18, 7/ ?? /18, 9/4/18, 11/6/18. Meet at 7 p.m. at Mike & Sheila Cory's house unless notified that it's been moved elsewhere.
If you go to http://smile.amazon.com and sign in to your account, you'll be given information about supporting various non-profits. You can type in "Northwest Orchid Society" and it will then send .5% of your purchase price to the organization.
It's really easy, but you have to remember to go in through the 'smile' subdomain when you place the order, otherwise it will go through as a regular order.
No Special Announcements this month. ©2018 Northwest Orchid Society