Category Archives: Messages to the Society

General Meeting: Sunday February 18, 2024

Alina Furtak will be our speaker at the February meeting and the topic as noted above is “Phalaenopsis stuartiana and its influence in hybridizing.” Alina’s passion for orchids goes back many years. At an early age she was exposed to the world of flowers by her grandmother, who cultivated plants for the local flower market and subscribed to many botanical magazines. Alina is an active SOOS member, where she currently serves as Vice-President and often contributes by putting together displays at Orchid Shows. She is also an AOS member, serving as an associate judge at the Toronto Judging Centre, and as a proofreader for the Orchids magazine. Alina is an amateur orchid grower for over 15 years and is also an artist. Her favourite subjects are–you guessed it–flowers!

in addition to Alina’s presentation, Ben Boers, Show Director, will discuss the arrangements for our Orchid Show, coming up on February 24-25, 2024. There are changes to the usual format that members need to be aware of.

The formal meeting begins at 2 pm but you are invited to arrive as early as 1:30 to socialize and interact with vendors. The location is RBG Headquarters, 680 Plains Rd. W. Burlington, ON, probably in rooms 3 & 4. Please bring your beautiful orchids in bloom for the Show Table and any orchids or orchid-related items that you may have for the raffle. Members and guests welcome. Masking (or not) in accordance to personal preference.

General Meeting: Sunday January 21, 2024

Ctt. Chocolate Drop ‘Kodama’

How did a bit of an ugly ducking, from two very diverse parents, become one of the most successful parents of all time in the Cattleya alliance?

“Cattlianthe Chocolate Drop and its Stunning Hybrids” is the topic for our January meeting. Jean Allen-Ikeson will give an illustrated talk about the development and culture of this beauty. We can expect to see lots of red! Jean Allen-Ikeson is well-known to OSRBG members, having addressed our group on several occasions. A judge in the Toronto Judging Centre, she was once OSRBG newsletter editor (in the late 1990s). Jean has written numerous articles for Orchids magazine and given webinars for the AOS besides being National Education Coordinator for AOS Judges and Chair of the Editorial Board of the AOS. She grows in a greenhouse and sunroom ‘up the escarpment’ from Dundas. 

The meeting will take place at Royal Botanical Gardens Headquarters, Rooms 3 & 4, 680 Plains Rd. W., Burlington, Ontario. The formal meeting begins at 2 pm but you are invited to arrive as early as 1:30 to socialize and interact with vendors. Please bring your beautiful orchids in bloom for the show table and any orchids or orchid-related items you may have for the raffle. Masking (or not) according to personal preferences. Members and guests welcome.

Auction and Holiday Social, Sunday December 17, 2023

Our annual orchid auction and holiday social will take the place of the usual meeting format on Sunday December 17, 2023. Members are asked to bring orchids and orchid-related items to be auctioned, finger foods to be enjoyed…and of course, cash to fund your auction wins! (Cheques and e-transfers also accepted.) This is always a good opportunity to pick up something new for your collection, or possibly a gift for someone on your list. Note that there will be no show table at this event but there will be a raffle for those who prefer to try another route for possibly adding an orchid to their collection. The auction takes place in Room 5,  Royal Botanical Gardens, 680 Plains Rd. W., Burlington, Ontario. It starts at 2 pm, but you are invited to arrive any time after 1 pm to socialize and interact with vendors. Members and guests welcome. Masking (or not) depending on personal preferences.

General Meeting: Sunday November 26, 2023

Note change of date!

Our speaker for the November 26th meeting is Joe Di Ciommo. Joe has been a member of OSRBG from the outset. He recounts that he attended the first ever Orchid show at RBG 40 years ago with his wife, Patricia, and her mother, Marie. When he heard that an Orchid society was being organized by Dr. Brasch and others, he decided to join. Over the years he served as President, Show Director, and was a member of various committees. His own orchid collection started under lights in the basement, then moved to a 250 sq. ft. greenhouse, then a 1,000 sq. ft. greenhouse. He started selling orchids 30 years ago, “to pay for the expenses”, he says. Joe has done his own hybidizing and has made hundreds of crosses such as “Di Ciommo Patricia, the orchid in the centre of the photo below. These days he works with his friend and colleague, Joe Barnes, who does the flasking, but in the past Joe also did this part of the process of orchid growing. He has won many AOS awards such as the CCM (Certificate of Cultural Merit) for the plant shown in the photo above. He will give us some tips on how to perhaps achieve a CCM for one of your orchids.

The meeting will take place at RBG Headquarters, 680 Plains Rd. W. Burlington, Ontario, probably in rooms 3 and 4. The formal meeting begins at 2 pm but you are invited to arrive any time after 1:30 to socialize and interact with vendors. Please bring your beautiful orchids in bloom for the show table and any orchids or orchid-related items you may have for the raffle. Masking (or not) according to personal preferences.

General Meeting: Sunday October 22, 2023

For our October meeting we travel, in our imagination, to Costa Rica with Dan Doucette.

Even though Dan has been to Costa Rica 7 times, he still manages to find new and exciting orchids to photograph. In his talk, Wild Orchids of Costa Rica, Dan shares his experiences from dense rainforests on the Caribbean coast all the way south to the orchid rich, high altitude cloudforests on the border with Panama. 

Dan is a Seasonal Gardener and World Traveler.  He has been traveling for over 25 years and has photographed over 600 orchid species in the wild.

The meeting will take place at the Headquarters of Royal Botanical Gardens, 680 Plains Rd. W. Burlington, in rooms 3 and 4. The formal meeting starts at 2 pm but you are invited to arrive any time after 1:30 pm to socialize and interact with vendors. Please bring along your beautiful orchids in bloom for the Show Table, and any orchids or orchid-related items that you may have for the raffle. Masking (or not) according to personal preference. Members and guests welcome.

General Meeting: Sunday September 17, 2023

Panel from 2019 meeting: Drew Goddard, Chris Varady and Rob Vanderheyden

The September meeting will be a reprise of a favourite format: a question and answer session where you, the members, can bring your questions and concerns about your orchids to a panel of local growers including Ben Boers and Joe DiCiommo among others. Not a good idea to bring along plants that may be diseased or suffering from insect pests. Instead, you can send photos in advance to bmboers@hotmail.com. [You can also send photos if you think a picture is “worth a thousand words” in trying to describe an issue that you would like someone to comment on or if you just want to remain anonymous.] The meeting will be held in rooms 3 and 4, Royal Botanical Gardens Headquarters, 680 Plains Rd. W., Burlington, Ontario. The formal meeting will begin at 2 pm and you are invited to arrive any time after 1:30 to socialize and interact with vendors. You are also invited to bring your beautiful orchids for the Show Table and, as well, if you have any orchids or orchid-related items suitable for raffling off, such donations are always appreciated. Masking or not will depend on personal preferences. Members and guests welcome.

Annual Picnic: Sunday August 20, 2023

Members are advised to check their recent emails for updated information about the Society Picnic. Contrary to previous information the Barbeque WILL be held. This year it will be at Joe DiCiommo’s home. Rain or Shine! Joe will allow entrance to his greenhouse and will be selling plants. Ben will be at his usual post! Contact him if you have any dietary requirements: bmboers@hotmail.com

You should bring a chair, and it you wish to bring a salad or dessert, it will be appreciated. Further details are in the email that Linda Will has sent out.

Sunday June 25, 2023: AGM and Strawberry Social

The ever-popular Strawberry Social returns! First we have the AGM at which the Executive for the following two years will be elected. Also on the agenda is a proposed amendment to article 2.1 of our Constitution, adding to our Objects “to help preserve wild orchids in their native habitats, to encourage scientific inquiry into their unique structures and environmental requirements, and to educate people about them and their need for protection”. Following the AGM, Ben Boers will give an illustrated presentation on orchid culture as practised in his greenhouse. Then we indulge in whatever strawberry-themed goodies you, the members, provide (finger-food only, remember, as we have no kitchen facilities). Also bring any orchid-related donations for the raffle table and your wonderful blooming orchids for the Show Table. And be prepared to enjoy!

The formal meeting starts at 2 pm, but you are invited to arrive as early as 1:30 to get settled, socialize, and interact with vendors . The meeting takes place at the RBG headquarters, 680 Plains Rd. W., Burlington, probably in rooms 3 and 4 (check upon arrival). Masking or not will be according to personal preference. Members and guests welcome.