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October 2017
Volume 71, Issue 3


About the October Meeting

October 9, 2017            7:00 p.m.

University of Washington Center for Urban Horticulture
3501 NE 41st Street
Seattle, WA 98105


Speaker:  Sam Tsui,  "Growing the group Brachypetalum"

Join the NWOS in welcoming Sam Tsui owner and operator of Orchid Inn (www.orchidinnusa.com) where he is considered the foremost breeder of Paphiopedilums in North America. Sam will be sharing his secrets and tips on growing the group Brachypetalum with us. Sam will also have some of his wonderful plants for sale.  

Orchid Inn, Ltd is owned and operated by Sam Tsui and his wife Jeanie. They started growing orchids in the early 1980's and it has always been their passion! Sam started breeding/hybridizing in the early 1990's and eventually started the home-commercial business "Orchid Inn" in their basement and greenhouses attached to the house. As the business grew, they purchased a six acre property and built their first commercial 6,000 square greenhouse in 2004. Currently they make over 300 crosses, produce 4,000 to 5,000 flasks or approximately 100.000 seedlings annually.

In the past 25 years, Sam has been very active in the orchid world by traveling to shows, promoting sales, and lecturing. Sam currently fills orders from around the world and attends over 20 orchid shows/conferences a year. He also does approximately 25 Paphiopedilum programs/lectures to orchid conferences, societies and groups annually in the USA, Canada, Japan, Australia and Europe. Over the past 24 years, he has judged at the Japan Grand Prix, the world's largest orchid show.

Hybridizing is Sam's passion. He emphasizes Paphiopedilum species, Brachypetalum, Parvisepalum and Multifloral hybrids. He only selects the best, most vigorous parent plants in his collection for breeding/hybridizing. He continues to improve his breeding stock by selecting plants or flasks from his fellow orchid growers that he believes are outstanding examples of their type.

As a result of Sam's breeding program, his orchids have been honored with approximately two hundred and Seventy five awards (as of May 6, 2017) from the American Orchid Society, Cymbidium Society of America and European Orchid Congress. His most prestigious awards include Fifteen First Class Certificate (FCC/AOS) awards; four Cultural awards including a 93 points Certificate of Cultural Excellence (CCE/AOS) award; and seven breeder Award of Quality (AQ/AOS) awards. All these awards are from American Orchid Society. Last but not the least, one of their recent Paphiopedilum rothschildianum sibling cross have been awarded with two GM/DOG and also the Grand Champion at the 2017 Dresden International Orchid Show in Germany.


Display Table:

Bring your blooming Orchids so everyone can enjoy them.


Sales Table:
Members may bring up to 10 plants to sell.  Include an extra tag with your name and the price in the plant.


The raffle will be held as usual.  Win a new orchid for your collection while supporting the Scholarship Fund.


NWOS Library: 

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.  For a list of library items Click on the Library link at the top left of this page or click HERE.

NWOS Fall Show and Sale Nov. 4th & 5th

The Fall Orchid Show at Swansons Nursery (9701 15th Ave NW, Seattle), is fast approaching.  This AOS-judged show will be open to the public on Saturday from 9-5 and on Sunday from 10-4.

Volunteer and Show Information
Our Show is coming in just one month, and we still need volunteers to help out with pretty much all tasks.  Signup sheets will be at the meeting, but if you are not able to come, please send an email to ShowRegistration@nwos.org with your preferred task and shift time.  Choose from

Saturday: 9am-1pm                Sunday: 10am-2pm
               1pm-5pm                             2pm-6pm
Go to http://newsletter.nwos.org/Show2017 for Pre-registration forms, downloadable posters, and other general information about the show.

Even though we'll have sign-up sheets at the meeting, here's a rundown of some of the opportunities to help out.

Setup on Friday, November 3rd, noon to 6pm
Move benches into place. There will be the display area, sales booths, and the Society sales area. George Grantham is in charge.

Once the benches are in place, the Society will be putting our display together. Members should plan on bringing their plants around 2pm, getting them registered, labeled and in place. Cylvia Grantham (and George, of course) will be in charge.

Vendors will need help setting up their sales areas, and their displays. I'm sure they will all welcome assistance with moving plants, getting their displays ready, entering plants, etc.

Data Entry
Help to register plants and print out tags for display plants. A computer with a spreadsheet program, like Excel or Open Office required. Thumb drives a plus.

Ribbon Judging (Saturday 9:00am)
Join the AOS judges, and your fellow society members to award ribbons throughout the show. It’s fun and easy. Don’t worry about being an “expert,” this is a great opportunity to learn, as well.

Cashiers - Friday (4-6pm), Saturday and Sunday all day
Run the Society sales through the cash register. We only have one register now, but it's helpful to have someone to prep the plants (pull tags, bag them up, etc). We need to have at least one person on this job at all times.

Welcome visitors to the show area. Direct them to the show, vendors, sales areas. Answer questions, shake the donation jar. The front table will have society information, applications, demonstration magazines, culture sheets, etc. There will also be an AOS display with AOS information and applications. These two may be combined.

These volunteers will also circulate through the show areas, talking to visitors, and providing some security for the displays.

Potting Service
Be available to repot plants for visitors. We will be asking for donation only, but a suggested amount will be posted ($xx for such and such size pot). You can do the repotting for people, or guide them through the process. There will be potting mix and maybe some old pots available, but let them know that Swanson's sells nice pots.

There may be some times or opportunities to have a group potting demonstration in the seminar space.

Seminar Presenter
Share your knowledge with others.  It's easy to talk in our informal setting to people who are truly interested in hearing about your experiences growing orchids.  We would like to have at least three or four talks each day. We currently have talks on greenhouses, Paph and Phrag culture, and mounting orchids.

Some other topics we've had in the past are windowsill growing, supplemental lights, and re-blooming grocery store orchids  Any other suggestions would be welcome.

Member Sales
Members can also sell their individual plants through the society.  Orchids for sale in the members' sale area must be marked with a removable tag bearing the price and the seller’s name.  This tag is in addition to any plant identifying tags and will be removed at the time of sale and used to calculate the seller’s total.  Vendors must price items clearly and legibly on this tag.  Each member selling must fill out the 'Member’s Sale Table Form' prior to placing items for sale.  All sales are subject to a 15% sales commission. NWOS members who wish to sell must have at least one high quality blooming plant in the NWOS display and work at least one show shift.

Breakdown (Sunday 4pm-6pm)
When the show’s over, we need to clean up, pack everything out, and get the greenhouse space back in order for the nursery. This is very important, so they’ll let us come back next year.

1. Break down the NWOS display, and organize the plants so they get back to the right owners.
2. Help vendors and visiting societies pack up and get their plants loaded into cars or vans. Some of them may be heading home, and need to get on the road as soon as possible.
3. Sweep the floors, pick up the trash, and make sure everything’s in order.

We're looking forward to another successful and enjoyable show this year.  I'd also like to send out a special thanks to all the Show Committee members.


Abigail Chang, President

Orchids and Volunteers Needed for Our Show Display

We are planning on a large area at our show for the NWOS display and we will need lots of plants to fill the space. It is especially important this year that we have a large display because we have fewer vendors and therefore fewer displays. Please bring your plants to Swanson's Nursery on Friday afternoon. If you are unable to bring your plants Friday afternoon you may arrange with me or another member to bring your plants. Please see elsewhere in the newsletter information on registering your plants. This information will also be available on the NWOS website before the show. If you are unable to register your plants in advance (preferred), you can register them on Friday when your bring them to Swanson's. 

Please make sure your plants are groomed, staked if needed, and insect free. If the plant is tipsy, it is very helpful and much safer for your plant it you place in a larger heavier pot for stability. Each plant should have your name on the pot or on a tag and you should bring a list of your plants with plant names written clearly and in full.

Feel free to contact me if you need help getting your plants to the show, and also I would like to hear from you if you would like to participate in planning and setting up our display.

George Grantham
, 2nd Vice President

Wanted:  Show Trophy Sponsors


Our 2017 Fall Orchid Show & Sale is an AOS judged show. In addition to any AOS awards, we hold a Ribbon Judging session where orchids in various categories are given first, second and third place awards.  Each year, a plethora of ribbons are awarded by our judges. Of all the First Place (blue) ribbons awarded, the "Best of" each plant category is determined and given a Trophy along with a cash prize of $25. The "Best of Show" is determined from all of the 1st Place ribbons and Trophies.


Please consider sponsoring a Show Trophy. It is a fantastic reward to those who have cared for their orchids and grown them to perfection.  It's also a nice incentive for them to share their blooms at our show.  It allows both us and the public to see the very best our club has to offer.  For those that may not be able to volunteer at the show, it's an alternative way to support our society.

I am looking for people and/or companies to sponsor one or more Trophies. I can take cash or checks.  The cost is $25 per Trophy or, in the case of the "Best of Show", any amount will do. Please contact me at the October Meeting to reserve your spot.

Alba Dennis, Show Committee

Help us Publicize the Show the Easy Way


One of the best ways to help us publicize the show is to 'Like' us on our Facebook page.  Click the blue facebook icon in this article to check it out. 


Here's three easy things to do:

First - simply 'Like' our page

Second - look for our Upcoming Events, find the Show Event and click that you're going

Third - Share the event to your Timeline to get the word out to all your friends


Do one or all three, but Do it NOW!

Last Chance to Renew your Membership at the Old Rate


Last month we voted in the proposed changes to our dues structure.  The cost of the annual membership be increased from $25 to $30, and the cost of a joint membership be increased from $30 to $40.  This change will take effect on October 11, 2017.


We also changed the membership year to run from January 1 through December 31.  This change will take effect immediately, and the first membership year under this policy will run from July 1, 2017 through December 31, 2018 (18 months). So even though the rates are going up, you'll have the benefit of the extended membership period this year.


Unless you joined very recently, it's time to renew your membership.  You can still join at the old rate until Oct. 10th and have the benefit of it going until 12/31/18.  Click HERE to pay by PayPal on our Membership page.  You can also pay at most meetings by cash, check, or debit/credit card.  You can mail (payable to NWOS) to PO Box 51021, Seattle, WA 98115-1021.  New members should complete the Membership Form.


Please contact Mike Cory for questions about the status of your membership.

New AOS Judging Site


This is to announce a new AOS Judging site in Eastern Washington. The October meeting of the Washington (Seattle) group will be moved to:

Gaiser Conservatory
4 – W 21st Ave
Spokane, WA 99203

The date is also changed, to October 28th at 1:00pm.

We are hoping to have an informal get-together at the meeting site at noon, and will have some munchies. This is an opportunity to learn more about the AOS judging system, and to spend a pleasant afternoon with Orchids.

Everyone is encouraged to join us, and bring your blooming plants. They don’t have to be perfect, or spectacular. We enjoy small, interesting orchids, as well.

Abigail Chang, AOS Judge

News from the American Orchid Society


For all of you who found themselves in the path of Hurricane Irma, we hope this finds you safe and sound having survived the catastrophic event. We were fortunate at AOS Headquarters and the AOS Library and Archives, located in the Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden at Coral Gables, Florida, to suffer no major damage inside the buildings and are now back to business as usual. We are blessed to have a staff that truly cares about the well being of our organization and are grateful for their extraordinary efforts during this terrible event. Unfortunately, the Gardens suffered all the devastating effects of Irma and have a long path to the restoration of many felled trees, damaged collections and grounds.


Thanks for all the pics that you are sending in for the InstaGram feed. It’s really wonderful to see such a variety of everything orchid that’s enjoyed around the globe. Please continue to send your photos and short videos to: americanorchidsociety@gmail.com.  Be sure to send a short caption explaining your photo. Also, if you are bilingual and can include your caption in English plus your other language(s)—it will help with our universal outreach.

Don’t forget to check-in on our Facebook Group Page for Affiliated Societies of the American Orchid Society. Our administrator, Chad Brinkerhuff, monitors the feed and is a great resource for all that the AOS has to offer. Keep us up to date on what’s going on at your local society and let us know how we can help you. If he doesn’t have the answer you need, he will find it for you.

Pleurothallis ringens 'Bryon Rinke' CBR/AOS; Photographer: Bryon Rinke


Judging Pleurothallids with Esteban (Steven) Gonzales
Wednesday, October 4, 2017 @ 8:30 PM - 9:30 PM EDT Judging - Members only

Join Esteban (Steve) Gonzalez and review how to judge those beautiful and diminutive pleurothallids.   Register now using this link: https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/9119068349037565443

American Orchid Society: Greenhouse Chat with Ron McHatton
Tuesday, October 12, 2017@ 8:30 PM - 9:30 PM EDT Open to All

Please join Ron McHatton, American Orchid Society Director of Education and Science Officer, who will discuss a variety of topics on orchid culture based on question submitted by attendees. Please send your questions to stillilsch@cox.net by Sunday, October 10th.
Register now using this link: https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/4527748585663490051

Town Hall Meeting from Ecuador with George Hatfield
Wednesday, November 8, 2017 @ 8:30 PM - 9:30 PM EDT Open to All

Find out the exciting things happening with the AOS. Don’t miss the AOS Town Hall Meeting & Board Meeting from the WOC22, in Guayaquil Ecuador with George Hatfield, AOS President.
Register now using this link: https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/8409334692352712705

Note: After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

WHAT ARE WEBINARS? Webinars are an Internet conference where you can hear the speaker and view his presentation, ask questions, and hear interactions from other members of the audience. You can join either on your computer or by phone. You can join from anywhere, via your Mac, PC or even your mobile device. Audio is included, so attendees can phone in or use VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol). You will need a microphone for your computer to use VoIP.

WANT TO LEARN, BUT CAN’T MAKE THE DATE? The live webinars will be recorded and posted on the AOS website, where you will find a link allowing you to view the webinars at your convenience.

Paphiopedilum violascens 'Indian Spring' HCC/AOS; Photographer: James McCulloch

THE OCTOBER ISSUE OF ORCHIDS MAGAZINE will feature great articles and beautiful pictures on:
Our Annual Supplemental Issue - This year's topic; The Genus Phalaenopsis
• Orchids Illustrated – Pogonia
• For the Novice - Winter Dormant Orchids
• Genus of the Month – Gomesa
• Saving the Rare Young Palm Orchid
• Rainwater Harvesting
• Frederick Sander
• A Visit to Papua, New Guinea

Cattleya crispa 'Windy Hill's Curli-Q' HCC/AOS; Photographer: Melissa Garner

Let’s grow together,

Denise Lucero, Vice-Chair, AOS Membership and Affiliated Societies

When Good Orchid Buds Turn Bad

Here’s an article about “Bud Blast” by Susan Jones that appeared in Orchids magazine back in July 2003. It’s just a useful today as it was back then.

It can be heartbreaking to watch helplessly as long-awaited orchid buds brown, die and drop instead of becoming those much-anticipated flowers. Bud blast, when buds wither and fall from an otherwise healthy plant, may occur through any of a number of causes. Buds are the most sensitive part of an orchid, and are easily affected by unsuitable conditions in the growing environment. Cattleyas, phalaenopsis and dendrobiums seem particularly susceptible to this problem. The most frequent reasons for this are as follows:

WATER Under- or over-watering is a common cause of bud blast. If a plant becomes too dry, it may withdraw moisture from buds as a survival mechanism. Overwatering can damage the orchid’s root system, with the end result being a lack of water to the plant. As with under watering, when the plant is unable to absorb sufficient quantities of water, it will withdraw water from the buds, bringing about their demise. Budding Cattleyas are particularly sensitive to overwatering, which can cause buds to blacken and die while still in their sheath. Water that is allowed to sit on buds or in bud sheaths provides the perfect environment for fungi and bacterial growth, generating rots that will blast buds. Watering with cold water can shock a plant, causing bud drop.

TEMPERATURE Temperature extremes or rapid temperature changes are often a culprit in bud blast. If a budding orchid receives drafts from a window, an air conditioning or heating vent, or even a rush of air from a hot oven, it may drop buds. Similarly, buds may blast when exposed to temperature fluctuations that occur when taking a plant in from the car or outside during hot or cold weather, bringing plants back into a heated house after a summer outdoors, or temperature extremes caused by running heating or air conditioning for only part of the day.

ATMOSPHERE Orchid buds are sensitive to fumes from paint, natural gas leaks and other chemicals. Once pollinated, flowers generate methane gas, causing them to collapse and saving energy for seed production. Methane or ethylene gas from other sources may also trigger bud or flower collapse. Ethylene gas given off by ripening fruit; gas leaks; inefficient burning of gas stoves or heaters; engine exhaust; cigarette, cigar or pipe smoke; open fires; smog or air pollution can also cause bud blast and age and distort open flowers.

LIGHT If lighting available to its developing buds is inadequate, an orchid won’t flower properly. Low lighting can cause buds to abort. Too much lighting may also cause trouble; direct sunlight on developing buds can overheat and desiccate them, leading to bud blast.

CHEMICAL DAMAGE Fertilizer, fungicide or pesticide applied at dosages above a plant’s tolerance or in a manner inconsistent with manufacturer’s instructions may damage buds, causing them to drop.

HUMIDITY Developing buds need high humidity. If their environment is too dry, or the ambient humidity fluctuates a great deal, buds may be adversely affected and drop.

INSECTS Aphids and thrips can cause bud blast. These insects feed on flowers and flower buds, sucking the plant juices. The buds of infested plants fail to develop properly, dropping from the plant or opening to damaged and disfigured flowers. Thrips can be controlled using Diazinon or Malathion. Aphid control often involves not only eliminating the aphids themselves, but also the ants that farm them. Insecticidal sprays and sugar-based ant baits are recommended. For a few aphids, dab with a cotton swab soaked in rubbing alcohol. Other means of control include insecticidal soaps, horticultural oils (Neem or Sunspray), growth regulators and chitin inhibitors (Enstar II), Pyrethrum-based insecticidal sprays, stronger insecticides (Malathion), and systemic insecticides (Orthene, Shield). Repeat any treatment method twice after the initial application at seven- to 10-day intervals to kill successive generations. Test new controls on a small population of plants before widespread use. When using insecticides, check labels to be certain the insecticide works against the particular pest and that it is approved for use on orchids. Always use any chemical in strict accordance with manufacturer's instructions.

GENETICS Occasionally, even under perfect cultural conditions, an orchid will continually abort buds. There may be a genetic mutation responsible for its inability to produce viable blooms, in which case the plant should be discarded.

Susan Jones was the assistant editor of Orchids and editor of the Awards Quarterly during the late 1990s and early 2000s.  (Please note that the AOS does not endorse the use of any specific chemical agents. If you choose to follow recommendations given by a contributor make sure to adhere to all local, state and federal laws in the use of these agents. Take the time to learn how to use them safely and follow manufacturers usage instructions.)

Report from the September Meeting

Joe Grienauer receives his AOS Certificate
of Appreciation for Outstanding Service
and Commitment to the NWOS


Abigail Chang opened our meeting with a call to vote on the proposed bylaws.  She asked for people to renew their memberships and get a paper ballot from Mike Cory.  George Grantham talked about upcoming shows: WA State Fair in Puyallup & the Tri Cities Orchid Society Show.  Abby made suggestions on how we could help with our own  upcoming show and asked us to sign up on the sheets.


At the June meeting, Mike Pearson announced a new Award: the AOS Certificate of Appreciation for Outstanding Service & Commitment to the NWOS. Two of these certificates were presented for the special work done for the NW Flower & Garden Show, one to Allan Kaas and the other to Joe Grienauer.  Joe was not present to receive his award so Mike and Abigail presented it to him at the September meeting.


Agigail spoke about the new AOS judging center in Spokane which will meet on Oct. 28th.  See article above.


In order to vote on the Bylaws which were recommended by the Board we needed 50 members present.  But only 32 members were in attendance so we suspended the bylaws.  We were then able to vote on the bylaws changes by a majority of members present.  The Bylaws changes were approved.  At the end of the meeting we re-instated the bylaws.  Mike Cory explained the new membership dues structure and timing.


Ellen Macomber asked for volunteers to take some raffle plants home and care for them until next month's meeting.  She conducted a huge raffle at the end of the meeting.


Our speaker was Alexey Tretyakov on Orchid Nutrition.  He discussed water management, CO2 management, improving photosynthesis by temperature management, water uptake and transpiration.  He also informed us on improving nutrient uptake by fertilizer management, Calcium enrichment and seasonal fertilizer rotation.  Lots of great information.  He also gave out a nice handout so we could reference it later.


Andy Wright reviewed the plant table.                                               Photos: Diane Drisch

Alexey Tretyakov, September speaker

We had some wonderful plants on the Sept plant table.  But it was a bit sparse
 and Andy asked us to bring in more blooming plants at the next meeting
Bulbophyllum phalaenopsis, Andy Wright

The inflorescence looks like rotting
meat with maggots to attract the pollinators (flies)





Bulbophyllum maximum, Joe Grienauer

Bulbophyllum contortisepalum
Age CBR/AOS, Andy Wright

Bulbo. guttalatum 'Ed Erickson' CHM/AOS,
Steve Dorsey (photo: Steve Dorsey)

Angraecum moandense, Steve Dorsey
(photo: Steve Dorsey)

Bulbophyllum saronae,
Andy Wright

Darwinara Charm 'Blue Star',
George & Cylvia Grantham

Neofinetia falcata,
Joe Grienauer

Vanda hybrid,
George & Cylvia Grantham

Vanda Thailand Beauty 'Carmela',
George & Cylvia Grantham

Vanda Brighton Pink,
George & Cylvia Grantham

Maxillaria striata, Andy Wright

Schoenorchis tixieri, Joe Grienauer

Phal. NoID, Barb Roberts

Phal. Chia E Yenlin 'Horng Lin', Barb Roberts

Phal NoID, Barb Roberts

Phal. Caribbean Sunset, Barb Roberts

Dendrobium forbesii,
Andy Wright

Eria merapiensis,
Andy Wright

Cattleya White Reception 'NN', Barb Roberts

Eplc. Volcano Trick 'Orange Fire',
George & Cylvia Grantham

Vuylstekeara Plum Fancy 'The Best',
Erika Dyer

Prosthecia (Encyclia) cochleata 'H&R' x cochleata 'Spy Hill', George & Cylvia Grantham

Joe's display

Gongora galeata,
Joe Grienauer

Miltassia Estrellita 'Sweet
 Senorita', Joe Grienauer

Thuan V Nguyen's display
He deflasked his seedlings into larger vessels to
maintain a humid environment for the young plants

P. Victoria Regina

P. glaucophyllum

Paph. Wallula Glenn
(P. Betty Glenn 'Disco Queen'
x P. liemianum 'Glenn'),
Joe Grienauer

Paph. Mamie Wilson
(P. lowii 'Dragon's Flight' HCC/AOS x P.
primulinum var. purpuracsens 'Tall 50'),
Joe Grienauer

Paph. Tom Fujiwara
(Delrosi 'Coral Curl'
x delenatii 'Pink Puff'),
Thuan V Nguyen

Schedule of Upcoming Events


October 9, 2017 - NWOS meeting - Speaker:  Sam Tsui, "Growing the group Brachypetalum"

October 28, 2017 - AOS Judging Center, monthly judging, 12:00 noon, moved to a new date and location (Spokane) this month.  See the article above.


November 4th and 5th - NWOS Show and Sale at Swansons Nursery, setup on 11/3

November 13, 2017 - NWOS meeting - Speaker:  Eve Rickenbaker, "UW Hyde Herbarium"


November 18, 2017 - AOS Judging Center, monthly judging, 12:30 pm, back in Seattle at the Phinney Neighborhood Center


December 11, 2017 - NWOS meeting - Potluck dinner, Christmas Plant giveaway, Schoenfeld and Northen Trophy contests


December 16, 2017 - AOS Judging Center, monthly judging, 12:30 pm


Jan. 21, 2017 - AOS Judging Center, monthly judging, 12:30 pm

Reminder for Officers & Board Members


The schedule of Board Meetings for this fiscal year is: 11/7/17, 1/2/18, 3/6/18, 5/8/18.  Meet at 7 p.m. at Mike & Sheila Cory's house unless notified that it's been moved elsewhere.

Shopping on Amazon?  Use this link to Earn $$ for NWOS


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.

Special Announcements


No Special Announcements this month.