2013 Archived Messages

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January 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-31 February 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-28
March 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-31 April 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-30
May 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-31 June 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-30
July 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-31 August 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-31
September 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-30 October 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-31
November 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-30 December 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-31

June 1—7

From: Horace Hands
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Hard done by...
Date: Tue, 04 Jun 2013 14:20

Dendrobium amethystoglossum. I may have shown you this plant before when in bud , since it had a lot of spikes, some 13 or 14, and I doubted if many would be open at once , so it might then have been at its best ( with 2 or 3 spikes open) . But no, more and more opened , and I waited until all were open, and just one had started to drop its flowers − and here it is with 13 spikes, maybe 400 flowers.

I showed this on the plant table of my Society a couple of days ago , also showed Dend moniliforme which I know I have shown − but it continued to open more and more flowers, having a total of 74 flowers when I put it on the competitive table. .( The same clone -Phyllis − was awarded in USA with 29 flowers smaller than mine ! ).

Neither got anywhere − not even a joint ( with two other plants) 3rd place. I felt rather badly done by ; in fact I got as far as draftfng a letter to the President complaining of the judging, but in the end did not send it or say anything to anyone. With bad (IMHO) judging, you just can't win.

Although of course, on a cold winters night, looking at the Society programme for the night and thinking it of little interest, I may think that there is no point in me taking a plant for the competition , they just think that it is someone else's turn to win, whatever I show, and stay at home.


From: Tina Stagg
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Hard done by...
Date: Tue, 04 Jun 2013 17:20

Have you thought of training as a judge yourself? It does make one s personal failures a lot easier to understand!



From: Andy
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Hard done by...
Date: Tue, 04 Jun 2013 19:35

Geoff that is really splendid fantastic blooms and lovely clean foliage. It is annoying to put up something and find that it is not appreciated. I have not found this plant to be easy to grow that well : I guess the judges don t know that. As a matter of curiosity what were the other 2 plants? There is one show where I never bother any more as the judges have such eccentric tastes!


From: Tricia Garner
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: Hard done by...
Date: Wed, 05 Jun 2013 00:00

Superb plant, Geoff. I sympathise about the judging. Alan was never
interested in putting plants on the competition table for that very
reason − the one and only time he did show a plant the judges said
they didn't know anything about it so couldn't judge it. It had
flowers on every growth, the leaves were glossy and it was bursting
with health so what more did they need? To be fair, once that was
pointed out they did place it second but it all seemed rather odd.

I have had some luck recently with plants I have taken to NHOS but
regard that as a bonus as the intention is to help make the table
look less sparse. Falling membership numbers have meant that far
fewer plants are being displayed these days.



The things that come to those who wait are usually the things left by those who got there first.


From: Peter Hieke
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Hard done by...
Date: Wed, 05 Jun 2013 06:55

Hi Geoff, it is a superb grown plant. I had it, but not with that many

I have the same problems with the judges. Most of them know nothing about

They know something about hybrids and the flowers must be big. They do not

species with many small flowers. I have stopped taking plants to shows.



From: Geoff
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Hard done by...
Date: Wed, 05 Jun 2013 09:10

I started orchid judging in the 1960s, when my name was nationally known from the regular column I had in Orchid Review. I was a judge at The London Show several times, and in 1970 ( as it happens I can date it with precision) I found that I was in a minority of one, voting against the judges choice for 'best hybrid' -until I pointed out that Phalaenopsis stuartiana is not a hybrid...
I thought that the general standard of knowledge of the judges was poor, and discussed this with the Editor of the Orchid Review. He made a suggestion, which I followed up, and the inaugural meeting of the British Orchid Council was held in 1971, as a direct result.
I was on the original judges training etc. committee. It made slow progress towards a training scheme .
But in 1976 I left the orchid world, sold all my collection, and went abroad to live and work ( I had just divorced , and had no ties, and my firm urgently needed an office next
to the new European Patent Office, in Munich ) .
When I came back to orchids in UK and started building my present collection − 1979 − I deliberately kept out of the Society scene for a time, but gradually got drawn back in. When it came to judging, of course I had no badge − but I did not feel that I needed training ! Keith Andrew, Brian Rittershausen, Ray Bilton etc.,( to name three who were my contemporaries as young men in the orchid world) all judged alongside me at one time or another − and continued after the training scheme started, and never had a badge as far as I know ! I am still − if immodestly − of the opinion that I know more about orchids than many people who have their badges .
I am not, btw, going to say much about the other plants on the competitive table on the occasion in question. In my opinion, 5 were outstanding, and I include my two among that five. But the judges chose two for their five ( 1st, 2nd, equal thirds) which I had mentally ruled out. I knew that one of them was a poor form of the species whereas one of the judges enthused to me about what a marvellous colour the flowers were ; another of their five had 3 or 4 flowers per stem, whereas exactly the same grex shown last year by the originator, at a London show, had 5 or 6 per stem, and larger and brighter too.

But all that is why I am not a badge man, and don't intend to apply.


On 4 Jun 2013, at 17:23, Tina Stagg wrote:

> Have you thought of training as a judge yourself? It does make one's personal failures a lot easier to understand!
> Tina


From: Peter Fowler
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Judging
Date: Wed, 05 Jun 2013 15:40

Back in the early 80's I went up to London ,when the RHS Orchid Committee sa
t , as much as I could. I wanted to see how good the plants/flowers had to b
e to obtain a CCC, AM, FCC.
I did this for a couple of years before I presented a plant before the commi
First one was a plant of Dendrobium cuthbertsonii "Susan", first time this s
pecies was presented.
The colour was a standard darkish pink, nothing special, but it had about 60
Got a CCC/RHS, which I was delighted with. Is it the person or the whole pla
nt that has the award? If you divide it can you still label it a CCC? I pe
rsonally think not, but what are the rules.
Geoff might know.

I see that Alan Burdis has been invited to sit on the RHS orchid committee. I
remember his lectures being very interesting but far, far too long!
Geoff, was he one of the judges that judged your Dendrobium ? Do they still
meet at the Natural History Society rooms?

6 out of 8 of my Disas have flower spikes. Tricias ones are doing well. I bo
ught a couple in eBay, which are in bud, but all the ones I bought from Dere
k Parkinson are in spike. I am really happy with the quality and price of hi
s plants. 46rom him you get the main large plant plus a few little babies, w
hich might have a special name? I don't know.

As an aside the camera I use is a Canon EOS 1100D. It came as a package from
Camera, 15-75ish, 50-300ish lens and bag. I needed a way to take macro photo
s. I looked at various economy methods but came down to the Canon Ultrasonic
,EF 100mm, f/2.8 Macro USM. A very quiet lens. OK ,a great lens but cost a
bout the same or slightly more than the Camera kit!
The camera is a good entry level model, where you can change lenses.

I hope to send photos of my Disas if they behave. First time I flowered this
family. All very exciting. I hope to produce some seed, which seems to be a
lot less time. Try the natural way the Victorians used to use.
Watch this space.
Good health to everyone.
Peter, Alton.


From: Geoff Hands
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Judging
Date: Wed, 05 Jun 2013 18:55

CCC/RHS is the only award given to the grower, not the plant.
So, no, whatever you do to the plant makes no difference.

Alan Burdis is a member of the Committee , yes (RHS, orchid committee). He is a Vice Pres' of Bournemouth, does not normally take part in judging

And yes, we still meet in the Bournemouth Natural History Soc. house.




From: Geoff Hands
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Judging
Date: Wed, 05 Jun 2013 19:00

Btw, Keith Andrew told me that he had as much success sowing Disa seed in drills in sand , just like radishes, apart from the compost, as he did using the lab and agar .



From: tony garthwaite
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Hard done by...
Date: Thu, 06 Jun 2013 19:55


Well, my specimen looked very promising about 5 weeks ago, but many spikes
shrivelled before coming to full bloom. Not sure what I did or did not do,
but I have one inflorescence at the moment which is the best yet.

However, note: ONE!!

Yours is spectacular!

I've written a mental note on The Report: "Must try harder!"

Will you be at the 3-Counties next Friday Geoff?

Tony G.


From: Geoff
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Hard done by...
Date: Fri, 07 Jun 2013 07:40

That's the plan ( to be at Malvern on Friday) . It will be the first time I have driven for more than 30 miles for over a year ( because of my eye problems) so its something of an experiment !



From: tony garthwaite
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Hard done by...
Date: Fri, 07 Jun 2013 13:00

Great Geoff! I'll look out for you!
You can exchange eye 'op' tales with my wife! ......... (Only joking!)

Best regards,

Tony G


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