New Additions

BurrBusy orchid weekend, and very satisfying. I dropped by John’s
greenhouse on Saturday, an impossible place to leave empty-handed.
Among my purchases was this lovely Burr. Nelly Isler. Burrageara is a
hybrid mix of Cochlioda x Miltonia x Odontoglossum x Oncidium. I find
the star shape of the flowers very attractive – they remind me of the
warm-growing miltonia’s.

Sunday I attended the SOOS (Southern Ontario Orchid Society)
Christmas party at the botanical gardens. I had to talk myself into
going, because I was sure I wouldn’t know anyone. It turned out to be a
lot of fun, my "coming out" so to speak. I ran into Wendy and her Mom,
and had a great chat. During the orchid auction (an annual fundraiser),
I learned that the woman sitting beside me was none other than Inge
Poot, and I had a chance to thank her in person for identifying my
stanhopea. And I finally met Jocelyn Bertrand of Beaver Valley Orchids,
a wonderfully funny and charming guy who, as it turns out, lives in my
neighbourhood. I have a feeling we’re going to be fast friends.

By the way, Beaver Valley Orchids has a new website address:

now on I won’t be shy about going to the monthly orchid society
meetings. The January meeting should be interesting; the speaker is
Eric Christenson, one of the principal characters in the Phrag.
Kovachii drama.

Onc_equit1_1More of my recent acquisitions, all from John Marcotte with the exception of the big oncidium, which I picked up at the meeting:


Two oncidium equitants: The pink, ‘Voraratbelle’, and the yellow, Midas ‘Willow Pond’ AM/AOS Equitants are small, compact plants with fan shape leaves — easy to squeeze into a brightly lit spot among my plants. Here’s a good link to information on equitants and other types of oncidiums.

Onc1This is a beauty I picked up at the show: Onc. ‘Golden Sunset’ x Onc.
onustum. Unlike the equitants, this is a big plant, with pseudobulbs
and a very tall spike. The skirt on this plant is very striking.

Phrag_sed_1And finally, a picture of my phragmipedium Sedenii ‘Blush’. It’s
been in bloom for a while now, but I never get tired of it – it’s such
a pretty sight in my grow room.

Today marked the tail
end of my weekend orchid adventures. I picked up an orchid for a friend
at the meeting, a truly spectular Oncidium Aloha Iwanagara ‘Golden
Showers’ in full bloom. Because I was to meet my friend right after
work, I took the orchid into the office today, ensuring an admiring
visit from every single person who passed my door. It took me a while
to realize that people thought I was responsible for all the blooms —
no no, I bought it that way!! Too late. Now I have a workplace
reputation for being some kind of super duper orchid expert. I’m more
of a duper, not so much super.

I was an even bigger hit on the
subway — dozens of people stared and admired, and one dear lady
overcame her shyness to ask me how to fertilize her orchids, just as
the doors were opening at my stop. I gave her some quick advice over my
shoulder as I exited the train, then was escorted to the escalator by a
short fellow in a construction helmet and vest, who wondered why the
roots were hanging out of the pot. He seemed very interested in my
explanation, and gave me a big smile as he said, "Thanks! I learned
something new today".

So now I know what to do if I’m ever in
need of being the centre of attention… ride the subway all day with a
big orchid on my lap.