August 2015

Hello Everyone,

August Meeting
Last month we got a spectacular tour of the Cattleyas of Brazil from Francisco Miranda of Miranda Orchids. This month we move a bit north with our very own WNCOS member Steven Frowine who will introduce us to the world of Mexican orchid species. Steven is the author of a number of orchid books including Orchids for Dummies, Fragrant Orchids, Gardening Basics for Dummies, Miniature Orchids, Moth Orchids, and the Complete Guide to Phalaenopsis. He will also have copies of his books for sale at the meeting. Steven is relatively new to WNCOS and to the Asheville area so this will be a great opportunity to get to know him better!

About this Month’s Native Orchid Feature
This month’s native orchid feature is the stunning Platanthera ciliaris, or Yellow-Fringed orchid. This orchid is one of the most showy and impressive of our native orchid species…easily rivaling the most impressive tropical species we’re more familiar with. Typically 15-20 inches high with the bloom heads easily reaching 8-10 inches tall held on a strong stem above the plant. They are often spotted along roadsides and in meadows. Look for this orchid in open sunlight and in areas where at least the plants roots remain damp to wet, but not in standing water. It can often be harder to spot than you think as it blends in quite readily with other plants of the same height.

(The above information was excerpted from my favorite book on local orchids, Stanley L. Bentley’s Native Orchids of the Southern Appalachian Mountains)

Asheville Orchid Festival Planning Updates
April 14-17, 2016

While a great deal of work is going on behind the scenes to make the upcoming Asheville Orchid Festival a success, the activity this month has been rather mundane (unless you get really excited about shuttle bus schedules and catering arrangements). As such, there is not much to report to you except to say that Mike and I have been busy crossing T’s and dotting I’s with the Arboretum, Graham has been hitting the pavement looking for sponsors, Bob has been researching registration and e-commerce options, and plans keep coming together…the only question remaining is whether we’ll make it to the event in one piece or if we’ll keel over from exhaustion first!

Plans for the event are moving fast…But I suggest planning now to take time off work, tell family you are out of contact, and make sure you are available for every second of the week’s activities.

A reminder that the board for this event consists of:
Brett Hopkins, Chair of the board
Mike Mims, Vendors and Speakers
Graham Ramsey, Fundraising and Promotions
Ralph Coffey, Hospitality and Transportation
Bob Hydzik, Registration
Stan Hutto, AOS Judging
Frank Smith, AOS Liaison
Beth Johnson, NC Arboretum Liaison

If you have have any questions about the event or if you wish to get involved (believe me there is PLENTY of opportunity) and help out get in touch with one of the board members listed above. Also, we’re actively seeking sponsors to help make this event a success so let us know if you know someone who wishes to support this event in any way!

I hope to see all of you the Meeting!

Brett Hopkins
WNCOS President