July 2020 - Volume 69 Number 7
Leafless Orchids and their Culture
by Speaker Mary Mancini
We will host Mary Mancini, as well as have our virtual “Show & Tell” session and opportunity table.
Dr. Mary Mancini is a thoracic surgeon and an avid orchid grower from Shreveport, Louisiana.
She has served as president of the Southwest Region Orchid Growers Association, as well as chairwoman for its Orchid Show.
She grows thousands of greenhouse orchids and has a special interest in leafless orchids - which is what she will speak to us about.
San Francisco Orchid Society
A California non-profit 501(c)(3) Corporation
There will be NO in-person meeting on July 7th, 2020.
AOS regional judging is on hold until further notice.
There will be a virtual meeting through 'Zoom'.
Please find details and ways to participate/join on pages 2 & 3.
For over 65 years the SFOS mission has been to foster the culture and conservation of orchids and to promote education of its members and the public about orchids. Our goals include: an exchange of information from exhibitions, publications, and the Internet, maintenance of a reference library, and participation in worldwide activities.
From the President
Defusing the Hate Bomb
Even before the unfortunate incident at our June 2nd SFOS meeting, I had heard about people “bombing” or crashing Zoom videocalls – but assumed these were mostly prankster kids trying to be clowns and interrupt school classes on Zoom – I thought “who would want to crash an orchid meeting?”
For those not at the meeting, it started off great (and ended well) – with a superb show and tell session – which we only got half way through when several individuals bombed us – first verbally interrupting with profanity and talking over us, then taking over the screen sharing, flooding the chat room with very directed hate messages and posting pornographic videos.We were recording the session to post to our YouTube Channel (which does now have the edited clean version) – and I was able to shut things down after only a few minutes – but it seemed like an eternity to many people present.I did write up and send a report of this event to Zoom – which has done little other than acknowledge it and recommend actions we should take to increase security/control to avoid these unwanted interruptions in the future – starting with requiring a password and RSVP for meeting entry - which we will implement.
It is a sad situation – though I guess not that unexpected given all the social and political tension and disrespect these days. We obviously value the diversity of our membership and broader community, and will support each other, rise above this and push forward.
On a positive note we were able to restart the Zoom call quickly and hosted one of our best attended speakers – Jason Fischer demonstrating his approach to growing orchids on constructed “jungle logs” – we had over 50 people attending even after the interruption – so if you were not there – you should check out the recording on our YouTube Channel (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p1q-xOoANiA&t=111s).
Please RSVP by email or via our website (www.orchidsanfrancisco.org) for the July 7th meeting – you will not want to miss the talk on “Leafless Orchids” by Dr. Mary Mancini.
We can all make a positive impact on our community and the world by not giving in to hate and negativity. The stresses and increased isolation brought on by the pandemic make this even more important. When you are lonely or down, it is easy to think no one cares. Go one step further – reach out to someone you have not seen or spoken to in a while – and check on them.
It only takes a few minutes, but the thought and effort can have a big impact.
By doing something seemingly as simple as coming together, sharing our photos and experiences about growing beautiful orchids, or calling someone to say you care, we can bring joy to others while showing our support and appreciation of each other.
Make the first move – you will be glad you did.
Examples of different AOS awarded leafless species from their archives (below and previous page, right)
Tips for the upcoming
For those who are unfamiliar with Zoom, it is a video chat application you can download and set up ahead of time, or just follow the link below at the time of the meeting.
Rather than just calling in, everyone is encouraged to either use the weblink or download the Zoom app ahead of the meeting to be able to better see and share the video content.
We will ask people to do “show and tell” - so plan to have either your plants nearby to share live pics or take/send pics ahead of time to share.
the specific meeting link is:
Password is 665944
The following devices all will work: Desktop computer, PC or Mac, Tablets, Cell Phones. If the device has a camera and a microphone you can use it.
Sometimes your PC may not have a microphone and in that case you can still use the computer and monitor and call in on the phone with the phone number. If you do this make sure to turn off the computer speakers to avoid feedback.
Cynorkis gibbosa - Chris Neitro
Dendrobium Kaila Quintal x polysema
Phalaenopsis hygrochila - Chris Neitro
We will raffle off some $20 online gift credits redeemable for plants to attendees, so please join the meeting and be sure your dues are paid up to be eligible to win.
Design by Samuel Wantman & Photos by Ron Parsons
Memberplanet helps us better maintain our membership roster and gives you complete control over your personal information. Even if you are a Lifetime Member, we would like you to sign up.
Joining provides a convenient online process to pay your annual dues.
Joining via MemberPlanet
Join us as a member via MemberPlanet (http://mp.gg/ja905)
If you want help with this process we can assist you.
If you cannot use the online process, you can mail a
check with your contact information to:
PO Box 27145
SF, CA 94127-0145
$25: Standard Membership (includes opportunity table access and email newsletters to one person)
$40: Household membership (2 or more people)
$75: Supporting Membership (includes 2 POE weekend passes, opportunity table access plus email newsletters)
$150: SFOS Patron Membership (includes 4 POE weekend passes, opportunity table access, email newsletters, one signed copy of A Bay Area Guide to Orchids and their Culture)
$500: SFOS Benefactor Membership (includes a mention in one of the newsletters, as well as all items in the Patron level - donation value of $350
$1,000: SFOS Orchid Circle (includes everything in the Benefactor level as well as a donation towards SFOS conservation and education funds with a donation value of $850
June 2020 - Volume 69 Number 6
Have you joined SFOS's MemberPlanet
During the active Shelter-In-Place and while future in-person meetings of the SFOS are suspended, we will do a virtual Show & Tell each month.
If you would like to participate you may either present your blooming plants or growspaces live online or send pictures/videos ahead of time.
Oncidium (ex. Odontoglossum) naevium
Show & Tell Table
Members took pictures of their in-bloom Plants & Growspaces
Burrageara Sunkissed 'Buttercup'
Aliceara Stellar Hoku
B BrThe Boomers
Catasetum Susan Fuchs
Schoenorchis manipurensis 'Vistamont'
Masdevallia ignea 'Crestwood'
Cattleya (no ID)
Maxillaria tenuifolia 'Yamada'
Phragmipedium Nitidissimum 'Rayber' HCC/AOS
Wilsonara Tiger Brew
Vanda Fuchs Delight x Meechai Blue
Cymbidium Devon Gala 'New Horizon'
Lycaste Abou Ritts
Renanthera Scarlett Yuka
Cymbidium (no ID)
Cymbidium Dorothy Stockstill 'Desert Cascade'
LC Canhamiana var. coerulea
Ascofinetia Petite Bouquet
Phalaenopsis (no ID)
Phragmipedium Frank Smith
Iwanagaara Apple Blossom 'Golden Beauty'
Epidendrum Diurna x fucata
Stellamitzutaara Kelly 'Lea'
Burrageara Nelly Isler 'Swiss Beauty'
Phalaenopsis Ox Queen
Vanda merrillii var. rotori x tessellata 'Mary Motes'
Cattleya intermedia var. orlata
Phalaenopsis speciosa fma. purple
You can help...
The San Francisco Orchid Society joins other orchid societies and businesses participating in the 1% FOC campaign by committing to budget 1%or more of our net revenue towards in situ orchid conservation projects. For more information:
Upcoming Orchids in the Wild® trips
Please refer to the OCA Website for updates!
For more information, see the OCA website
SFOS Board Meeting Minutes
June 8, 2020
Invitees (all in attendance): Jeff Harris, Erik Sayle, Faye Rabino, John Russell McCallen, Dave Hermeyer, Debra Vails-Qualters, Christian Neitro, Lynne Murrell, Stuart Menaker, Lauren Iverson, and guest - webmaster John Rushworth
Zoom Board meeting called to order: (7:14 pm)
President's update: Jeff
Welcome new webmaster John Rushworth - quick intro / Q&A
Feedback on Weebly (by Square) website at orchidsanfrancisco.org (it’s live!)
About us/Mission statement could be more prominent on the landing page: for example at the top.
Should we have a members only area? What should be there?
Embezzlement Case Update: received another payment this month; next hearing date was moved out from June 10, 2020 to July 28, 2020.
See new business items re: new Membership Chair - Lauren Iversen
Key needs - given no live plant sale events to raise money:
Content creation / curation for web/social media vs “private” value for members?
Online Sales? (Books, T-shirts, …?)
Treasurer’s report: Faye
Faye presented the monthly (May 2020) finance report - Lynne moved to endorse the monthly finance report and Lauren seconded the motion which passed unanimously by verbal vote.
2020-2021 Revised Budget review and approval: many items have been reduced or eliminated, overall expenditures outpace projected income for the year.
Board moves to endorse the budget with the condition that a journal entry / line item be added noting the funds from savings required to balance the budget - Motion seconded by Lynne, passed by unanimous verbal vote
VP’s update: Erik
July - Mary Mancini - Leafless Orchids
Aug - Tom Mirenda - topic TBD
Jason Miller - SFOS 2019 research grant recipient: Genetic diversity of Cypripedium arietinum within Wisconsin to be rescheduled
Sept - Oct - TBD
Nov - Alan Koch - Gold Country Orchids?
Dec - Holiday party - alternative plans?
Chris Mende/Tony Wells from Tiny Jungle & Lets Talk Plants will continue providing $20 gift credits in lieu of an opportunity table - still working out some logistics but it is working ok
Show and Tell - We’re lucky we have so much to share, but could do with a little curating - it’s suggested that we request members submit images/video of their three best plants/blooms to share, to keep runtime manageable
POE 2021 - show committee met and unanimously recommended that we postpone POE 2021 from February to July when we would typically do OITP, and postpone show committee meetings until July or Aug 2020)
Membership update: (Debra/John)
New members in June (Rebecca Fox, Jenny Lumb, Coleen Kivlahan (gift from Stuart), Cori Majewski, Jen Poulakos); June 2nd meeting headcount (50+ on Zoom per Jeff’s count).
Newsletter editor update: (Christian) - reminder to submit contributions including classified ads by the 15th of the month for target e-distribution of newsletter on the 20th of the month.
Website costs/coverage updates
Membership Chair - Debra Vails-Qualters has resigned - asked Lauren Iversen to take over and she agreed - per section 9 of Article XI - Elections
Lynne moves that the board officially selects Lauren as the membership chair. Seconded (by Faye) and passed by unanimous verbal vote
Apology and acknowledgement regarding the zoom bombing to be posted on the site and in the newsletter, as well as a statement of our values and the steps we’re taking to prevent such attacks in the future.
“Per SFOS Bylaws (Dated 03/11/12)
Section 9 of ARTICLE XI - ELECTIONS: “Vacancies occurring in any Office or Directorship shall be filled for the unexpired term through appointment by the Board of Directors.”
Section 5 of ARTICLE IX - DUTIES OF OFFICERS: “Membership Chairperson. The Membership Chairperson shall keep, or cause to be kept, at such place as determined by resolution of the Board of Directors, a record of the corporation’s members, showing the names of all members, their addresses, and the class of membership held by each.”
Discussed updates to membership benefit language given POE/OITP delay/cancellation, and any other changes.
Next Board Meeting: Monday July 13 - Zoom Meeting to be scheduled to start at 7PM
Meeting adjourned at 8:33pm.
John Russell McCallen
Special Pricing $60.00 for SFOS Members!
Written by Phillip Cribb and Christopher Purver, this 282 page book covers the tropical American species of three genera of slipper orchids, Selenipedium, Mexipedium and Phragmipedium. Beautifully illustrated throughout with color botanical paintings by Carol Woodin, as well as black and white line drawings, color photographs and maps.
To purchase your copy please contact Jeff Harris: firstname.lastname@example.org
Get your copy of “The Bay Area Guide to Orchids and Their Culture”, featuring many of the members of the San Francisco Orchid Society and our neighboring orchid societies. Cost is $21.69 ($19.99 plus sales tax ($1.70). Contact Mary Gerritsen for purchasing arrangements: email@example.com
We want to especially thank our Premier Sponsor:
Current SFOS Contacts
President: Jeff Harris
Vice President: Erik Sayle
Secretary: John McCallen
Treasurer (CFO): Faye Rabino
John Russell McCallen
Past President: Dave Hermeyer
Membership Chair: Lauren Iverson
Newsletter Editor: Christian Neitro
AOS Representative: Japheth Ko
Orchid Digest Representative:
Librarian/Historian: Lauren Iverson
Vacant - please apply!
Webmaster: John Rushworth
Do you subscribe? If not, you might want to consider doing so. Orchid Digest is published quarterly with over 200 pages of amazing photos and excellent articles.
1 year subscription (4 issues) $39.00
2 year subscription ( 8 issues) $75.00
The Bloom Room
Mail order plants
During the current Pandemic all Orchid-shows and open Greenhouses are cancelled, but that does not mean that one can not get their Orchid-fix.
Many Orchid vendors offer appealing discounts and deals during these times,. So why should we not take advantage of that?
Ordering online from vendors' webshops, Facebook sales groups and the like has its upsides and downfalls.
For one, one can search and find very special plants that are usually not readily available at local shows. This includes species that are hard to find or clones and divisions of awarded plants that are uncommon as well as flasks and seedlings.
But how do you choose a good vendor or a well grown plant through just your computer screen?
Let me share some tips that might be of relevance.
Picking the right vendor
There are great vendors and there are not so great vendors around. How to determine which is which may be difficult, especially if you order from them for the first time.
The first tip is to listen to first hand experiences friends and fellow growers have to share about a specific vendor. That can help you to determine if it's worth your time and money.
Another great resource is reading reviews. Etsy and Ebay have those integrated already, and you can also google most vendors and find good reviews on all kinds of forums.
Read descriptions carefully! Vendors upload all kinds of information on their sales posts. Important, to me, is the size of the plant I am planning to buy. We all know the keys BS (bloom size), NBS (near bloom size, S (seedling), but some do not know what that means exactly.
Seedling describes very young plants, that may just have been deflasked, while NBS describes a plant that has (usually) been deflasked about 1 year ago and may or may not bloom in 2-3 years, while BS plants are adult plants that can bloom in the coming blooming season. Although this is not a strict rule of thumb, it is more often true than not. If you are not sure about one plant, then you can always send an email asking about the specific plant you are planning to buy. A good vendor will gladly reply and explain, and maybe even send you some pictures of the desired plant.
Also, If you buy from a Seller on Facebook, Ebay, Etsy and the like, always ask for a tracking number (if not automatically provided).
Please try to avoid foreign vendors on Ebay, Etsy, Facebook. If you are not a broker who can legally import plant material into the USA you may be engaging in illegal activity, which can result in substantial fines and confiscation of said plant material.
Another thing that sets a great vendor apart from a bad one is in how they treat complaints. A great vendor will immediately refund your money or resend a new plant if something is not right. Please make sure to immediately contact the vendor and document any problems with your order photographically as well.
I can highly recommend the exclusive use of Paypal for all kinds of online payments! There are two main reasons why I am making such a statement:
1. Your payment/card details remain safe. I have learned that the hard way, and since will not buy ANYTHING online if Paypal is not offered as a payment method. The only time I will consider sending a check is if I know that seller from multiple previous transactions.
2. If you end up with someone who is fraudulent and do not receive the order you placed, then you can request a refund/contest your payment on Paypal. It is rare, but it does happen. Also, I strongly recommend to always send payments through the business option, and not the 'Friends & Family' option Paypal offers. The latter saves the seller fees (which are minute) but when you use that function you forfeit any kind of Buyers' insurance.
How to unpack and treat new plants
Whenever I receive plants in the mail I follow a strict protocol, to save my current collection, money and a lot of headache:
As soon as I unpack my plants I thoroughly check them for evident pests and diseases. I unpack all orders in a separate room, away from my other plants. After that I water all plants very well with a systemic pesticide solution. I use 'Tree & Shrub - Protect & Feed' from Bayer (0.74% Imidacloprid) at a ratio of 1 tsp (5ml) per Gallon of water. This will take care of several kinds of mites and other bugs that may hide in the potting medium. I leave those plants overnight, so the roots can absorb the pesticide. I also treat mounted or bareroot plants like that as well.
Fungus or bacterial problems that you think may be present can be treated by spraying at this point as well. I usually use Physan 20 or Dithane M-45 at the recommended ratio.
You can test for Virus at this stage as well.
The following day I repot said plants. Even if they are in spike! Especially if they are potted in moss. This will get rid of snails and slugs that may hide in the mix (moss), since they are mostly not affected by the pesticide. I also repot immediately so I can: a) have a good look at the roots and b) pot the plants in a medium and container that fits my growing conditions.
Before repotting I like to use a rooting stimulant. KelpMax (1Tbsp/gallon, K-L-N from Dyna-Gro (1/2 tsp/gallon) and Rapid-Start from GH (1/4 tsp/gallon) all have worked really well for me in the past. I use luke warm water and let the whole plant soak in that solution (after cleaning the roots) for 1-2 hours, before potting/mounting.
Please do not forget that plants which come from a different environment (tropical climate like Florida or Hawaii for example) need time to adjust to their new home before they start growing again. Some can take quite some time.
The only plants I will not repot immediately are plants that are currently blooming. Those will get repotted as soon as the flowers fade. But I do treat them with forementioned pesticide and keep them isolated from my other plants. It also help treating them for slugs and snails in the following manner: I dissolve several capsules of caffeine in water, your goal concentrations is 1200mg of caffeine per gallon of water. Then you generously water the plant/s in question with that solution. This will kill about 96% of all snails present. (https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1744-7348.2003.tb00233.x)
Even if this article will have helped you make the decision to try online ordering plants, please remember to support your local greenhouses/growers as well, or maybe even take advantage of our classifieds section.
Good Growing, Chris Neitro
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Send items by the 15th of the month by email to:
Events & Announcments
Due to the current Situation no new Events
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San Francisco Orchid Society Newsletter
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I am searching for Tree
Fern Pots & Spheres,
Larger Sizes preferred
Please send offers to: firstname.lastname@example.org
I have several Cymbidium Divisions available for
safe curbside pick-up (near Mission Dolores), or drop-off within SF.
Email Ron Norris for a list with photos and prices.
On a personal note:
I am no longer accepting the things I cannot change. I am changing the things I cannot accept.
Angela Y. Davis