The Cape Orchid Society Archive 

News Archive

Growing hints


MARCH 2003

TUESDAY 25 MARCH  2003 starting promptly at 19h45 at Athenaeum, Newlands


Annual General Meeting

followed by
Great Cattleyas from the USA

by Mike Byren

Mike will present a selection of Cattleya alliance plants that have received awards in USA in recent years. Many of these plants, or their progeny were imported by Stellenkloof Orchids from Orchids by Hausermann in Chicago. Mike has a wealth of knowledge and experience which he has agreed to share with us. An additional bonus is that he has access to many of their award slides, so we will definitely be treated to excellent photography that will show off the blooms to their best advantage.

The 2 plants supplied by the Society for the raffle will be Dendrobium alexanderae x johnsoniae from Caro-Lin Orchids in Port Elizabeth and Paphiopedilum delenatii ‘Rosy Wing’ x delenatii ‘Rosy Caprice’ which is from Bloomfields Nursery in New York.
All additional plant donations for the raffle will be gratefully accepted.

There is again the opportunity to sell plants as long as you agree to donate 10% of your takings to the Society.

As you see, the AGM is upon us and this is a call for nominations for ALL the positions on Committee. If you are willing to serve on Committee, please make it known and make sure you are nominated for the appropriate portfolio. Remember we are looking, in particular, for assistance in the Treasury department. Can you help? Nomination forms accompany this newsletter so please make every effort to ensure that we have a full committee of President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer, Librarian, Show Chairman, Newsletter Editor and 3 Members (no specific portfolio).
Nominations should be returned by post or fax to the Secretary Carol Potgieter by no later than 14 March 2003. See the nomination form for details.

Our condolences to Sophia Quint and her family on the passing of her husband Frank. Although they have not been Members for a number of years, I am sure many Members will remember their quiet, poised and loyal attendance at meetings and Shows.
Welcome to new members Percy and Susan Olfsen and Thomas and Marianna Ellis all from Somerset West. We hope you are hooked into this wonderful world of plants and friends.
March birthday greetings go to Karsten Wodrich (17), Anne Dietrich (21), Mike Gallagher (23), Louis Vogelpoel (26) and Ashley Braver (28). Have a happy day!
Last month we reported that Hugh Rogers was ill and managed to add an addendum to those who received their letter by electronic mail that he had in fact died. Hugh was the dedicated Editor of the South African Orchid Council Journal for many years. He lived and grew his orchids in Pietermaritzburg where he made a tremendous contribution to the local Society and had many orchid friends. He will be sadly missed. We extend our condolences to his family and all his friends.

Volkmar Schmidt gave us a real insight into the botanic gardens in Singapore and Borneo.The term “growing in full sun” takes on a new meaning and probably refers simply to the fact that the plants do not grow in the shade of the trees but out in the open. The almost constantly overcast weather and seldom-seen blue sky, certainly cannot be equated to our interpretation of “full sun”. The lush vegetation of palms and ferns provide a wonderful backdrop for many of the epiphytic orchids. Volkmar saw a number of Dendrobiums, Dendrochilums, Coelogynes and huge examples of I. Thank you very much for sharing your trip with us.
Thank you to Volkmar Schmidt, Alan Bowley and Jenny Kavarana for donation to the plant raffle. The lucky winners this month were: Rachael Braver, Jacques Jefthas, Jenny Kavarana, Susan Olfsen and Gerry Walden

Please contact Volkmar Schmidt if you are interested in joining us for a weekend away (Tel no. 976 3946). The intention is to have a get together as well as an “orchid” outing.
If you are aware of areas that have recently been burnt, especially over December/January, please notify one of the Committee members so that they can investigate its potential for a good spring display of orchids.

Any outstanding subscriptions should be paid to our Treasurer Jacques Jefthas or the Secretary Carol Potgieter as soon as possible. Their contact details are available at the end of this letter should you need them.

The next Judging group meetings are as follows:

Date : Saturday 15 March 2003

Time : 14h30 – 17h00      

Topic: Phragmipediums   

Host :  Hendrik van der Hoven 

Venue: 35 Nooitgedacht Drive,
Hout Bay 790 2433 (a/h) 


Date: Saturday 12 April 2003

Time: 14h30 – 17h00

Topic: to be announced

Host: Mike Byren

Venue: 44 Rushmere, Doordrift Rd,


Tel. no: 794 6439


Please remember to notify the host in advance if you will be attending.

The dates for our Show at Kirstenbosch are: 7 – 11 May 2003.
7 May - Plant acceptance
8 May - Judging & Show building
9 –11 May – Show open to public
11 May at 5pm – Break down and workers’ party.

Anton Hofmann needs volunteers to help with the jobs and duties at the Show. Please contact him if you can help with any of the following:
- Advertising (contacting the local newspapers etc with the information on the Show and co-ordinating poster distribution )
- Catering ( co-ordinating the supply of tea/coffee/milk etc; the eats for the judges’ tea and organising a plate of sandwiches at lunch times on the days the Show is open)
- Plant entries – Wendy Gersie is co-ordinating but if you would like to be involved, call her at 712 8721.
- Plant sales – Ann Gray is co-ordinating but needs helpers and somebody willing to take over the co-ordination as from next year.

Duty rosters will be available at the March meeting so please fill in your name in the gaps.

Remember we need greenery and foliage plants and also offers to transport the “props and Show paraphernalia” on the Wednesday 7 May and again on Sunday 11 May.

26 – 28 September 2003

Keep the dates in mind and return your postcard from the Yearbook to keep up with the latest news and programme information.

Volkmar Schmidt’s Oncidium Aloha ‘Iwanaga’ makes regular appearances at the plant table and never ceases to impress. Congratulations on the stunning bright yellow flowers held on a strong, branched spike of about 1 metre long. Volkmar’s Catasetum luridum had very good substance and the flowers last for about 10 days. His plant carried only male flowers whereas Peter Hieke’s plant that is also in flower at the moment has only female flowers. In nature it appears that the female flowers are often on the plants that are higher up in the trees. The thoughts are that either the light intensity or temperature around the plant determines the sex of the flowers.
Frans and Bes Gous brought a really striking example of Encyclia vitellina growing well in a small pot. This is not the easiest species to grow. Do not be concerned if you too flower an Oncidium croesus. It is quite normal for the lateral sepals to be fused…it is not a deformity. Dendrochilum magnum with its spicy smell, seemed to be the lone fragrant contribution to the Table.

Stenoglottis longifilia  
from George Leyland is an easy to grow, hardy species from Natal. This plant was looking a little tired and was thought to be flowering a bit earlier than expected.
Miltonia spectabilis
var moreliana from the Gersies had a “whopping big flower” to quote Mike Byren. The colour was a lovely deep purple.
Manfred Waltner’s Paphiopedilum Shireen (P.glaucophyllum x philippinense) was typical of the cross in colour and nature, growing very happily with wonderful strong foliage.

Will the Members who are still owed a glass for winning the Plant of the Evening, please contact the Secretary, Carol Potgieter, so she can let you have it.

PLANT TABLE  - February  2002
Thank you to Mike Byren for his comments and everyone who brought their plants.

Eberhard & Wendy Gersie

Paphiopedilum Magic Lantern

Paphiopedilum Magic Lantern x malipoense

Paphiopedilum Armeni-White

Miltonia spectabilis var. moreliana


Frans & Bes Gous

Oncidium croesus

Dendrochilum magnum

Encyclia vitellina

Laeliocatonia Flying Colors ‘Mendenhall’


Eric Harley

Epidendrum porpax


 George Leyland

Stenoglottis longifolia


Volkmar Schmidt

Catasetum luridum

Oncidium Aloha ‘Iwanaga’

Ascocenda Phairat x Korbjal 4n


Manfred Waltner

Paphiopedilum Shireen


Plant of the Evening
1st  Oncidiium Aloha ‘Iwanaga’ from Volkmar Schmidt
2nd Encyclia vitellina from Frans & Bes Gous
3rd Miltonia spectabilis var.

Member’s Choice
Catasetum luridum
from Volkmar Schmidt and chosen by Wendy Gersie

(In case you were wondering, the Member who is chosen to nominate their choice for the evening, is he/she who happens to be sitting in the predetermined grid position in the hall, decided upon each month at the monthly Committee meeting.)

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P O Box 3347, Cape Town 8000, South Africa 
President: Peter Vurgarellis  Tel 021-6718166
Vice-President: Hendrik van der Hoven  Tel 021-7902443
Secretary: Carol Potgieter Tel
083 625 9170
Treasurer: Jacques Jefthas Tel 021-5114508
Librarian: Rachael Braver Tel 021-
Show Chairman: Anton Hoffman, Tel. 083 325 7832
Newsletter editor: Wendy Gersie Tel 021-7128721
Sylvia Byren, Tel. 794 6439
Volkmar Schmidt, Tel. 976 3946
Electr.newsletter distrib. & Webmaster:
Sysser Waspe Tel 021-7801758
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