Minutes of Meeting of American Rhododendron Society, Portland, Oregon, March 15, 1951
Submitted by Mrs. Ruth M. Hansen, Secretary
The meeting was called to order by President Mr. C. I. Sersanous, in the Auditorium of the Journal Building at 8:00 P.M. The minutes of the February meeting were read and approved.
Guests were then introduced and Mr. and Mrs. William Ryan of Edmonds, Wash. were welcomed as the members coming from the greatest distance.
The second reading of a proposed amendment to the By-laws was read again: "The A.R.S. will only give approval to Rhododendron Shows which are sponsored by affiliated Chapters or Non-profit organizations." The Question was then asked and hearing none the proposed amendment was voted upon. The vote was carried unanimously.
Announcements: The Greater Spring Seattle Flower Show; May 4, 5 & 6. This will be the only flower show held in Seattle this Spring and is a combined show of all the single plant Societies. The Rhododendron display will be according to the rules and regulations set forth by the American Rhododendron Society. This also includes the judging.
The Tacoma Rhododendron Show will be on the 12th and 13th of May. Our Show, the A.R.S. display will be held on the 5th and 6th of May. The Men's Garden Club Show will be on April 20, 21 and 22nd in the Civic Auditorium. Mr. Ed. Roth, one of our members and also President of the Portland Men's Garden Club was asked to say a few words about their Show.
A letter was then read from Dean Collins, Editor of the Garden Section of Oregon Journal, in which he told of the four Informal Flower Shows to be held in the Journal Bldg. during March, May, September and October. All Single Plant Societies were urged to enter as well as Garden Clubs.
Mr. S. W. Williams, Show Chairman for 1951 stated that some progress was being made. The various Committees have been selected, letters have been sent to all prospective committee-men and Mr. Williams thanked all those who had returned their cards. A new idea, which Mr. Williams wishes to try out, is the Question Box. Anyone wishing to make any suggestions about the show may drop his written suggestion in the Box. Mr. Williams also brought out that the Nurserymen are now apprehensive about the selected dates of the Show. After our past week of cold weather and snow it has doubtless retarded the blooming dates of most rhododendrons.
Mrs. Robert Bovee, Chairman of Advertising requested that those Nurserymen who have not been contacted for ads and who wish to place an ad for the April Bulletin to please see her at intermission.
Mr. Jeanette Grossman, Chairman of Membership had no report at this time.
Mr. John Bacher, Chairman of the Test Garden reported that it was very well underway. The Shelter was completed, the planting well along and the paths on the South half of the Island had been repaired. We now need the hybrids for the actual Test Garden. For those who have been growing hybrids from seed, now is the time to send them to the Test Garden. Up. to now the planting has been mainly of specie and show plants for background and everlasting beauty; we can use more of this type of planting, but we do need our first actual Test Garden plant.
Mr. Sersanous then read a letter from Mr. Brian Mulligan, Curator of the University of Washington Arboretum in which he said that their Test Garden was ready for official testing plants. Some had been promised which they expected in the near future.
Dr. J. Harold Clarke was then called upon to say a few words about the Test Gardens. He told again about the Judges on Awards which had been selected in the three areas where the Test Gardens are located; Seattle, Wash., Portland, Ore. and The Morris Arboretum at Philadelphia, Penn. The entry fee for a plant is $2.00. This is not to defray the expense of the plant, but to assure the Test Garden Committee that someone would not bring in a car load of seedlings and fill up the allotted space. Dr. Clarke urged everyone to enter his seedling in the Special Award Class in the coming Show.
Mr. Sersanous told of a new committee which was formed at the last Board of Director's Meeting. This will be known as "The Permanent Exhibition Committee." Mr. John Henny will be Chairman and assisted by Ben F. Lancaster, Howard Slonecker, George Grace, Dr. Clarke, Ted Hansen and Rudolph Henny.
Mr. John Henny then explained to the membership the object of having such a committee. It is to encourage members to bring exhibits into the meetings of cut trusses, interesting foliage or even whole plants, if they didn't wish to cut the blooms. The plans are to have an informal show at each meeting from February to May. The individual scoring the most points over the four month period will receive an award from the Society.
The membership was congratulated on the fine display of cut trusses and plants they had brought in for this meeting.
Mr. Bacher's display consisted of a truss of R. irroratum, a first cross between irroratumand 'Cornubia', 'Rosa Mundi' and his first seedling hybrid in bloom, a cross between 'Mme. Butterfly' and fortunei which was a delicate pink color. Mr. Sersanous exhibited a fine specimen plant of 'Praecox', George Grace showed two fine trusses of 'Helen Fox'. Ben Lancaster showed four small plants of 'Maxwell' x mucronatum and a reverse cross. These ranged in color from a pastel pink, to lavendar and a deep plum shade. Single specimen of impeditum, 'Bric-a-Brac' and moupinense were also displayed.
A reading of the proposed officers submitted by the nomination committee are as follows: President, C. I. Sersanous; Vice President, Bob Bovee; Treasurer, Bruce Yergen; Secretary, Mrs. Hansen. Members nominated for the Board of Directors are: B. O. Mulligan, Seattle, Wash.; Everett Farwell, Alameda, Calif.; Wales Wood, St. Helens, Ore.; Russel Gaynor, Newberg, Ore.; John Henny, Brooks, Ore.; and George Grace, Portland, Ore. Nominations were invited from the floor, hearing none the nominations were closed.
The election of officers will take place next month at which time ballots will be mailed to all members.
The Guest speaker for the evening was Mr. Romaine B. Ware whose topic was, "Lillies as Companion Plants for Rhododendrons."
Mr. Ware first told of the need of planting something with the rhododendrons which would give color throughout the Summer months. As lilies like the same soil and drainage condition a rhododendrons they make an ideal companion for the evergreens; however there is one thing which they do object to and that is an excessive amount of fertilizer. This can be overcome by placing the blubs in a pocket of soil.
All lilies like their bulbs shaded and their blooms up in the sunshine. Lilies should be planted at the proper depth. This depth has been determined by various growers who have experimented with different kinds of bulbs and have finally determined a suitable planting depth for each kind of bulb. If the proper depth is adhered to, the lilies will come through the winter in good condition.
In planting lilies among rhododendrons it is advisable to plant several bulbs in a clump. This will give a greater degree of color in the planting.
Moles, gophers and field mice cause a great deal of damage to bulbs. Lily people have tried to counteract this menace by planting the bulbs in wire baskets made of 1 inch poultry mesh. There are two advantages in using these baskets; one that the bulbs may be planted during inclement weather and then moved outside at a more desirable time and two, that the baskets protect the lilies from being dug into during the Spring cultivation.
Oregon produces 98 per cent of all lilies and ships them to all parts of the world.
Mr. Ware then had slides shown of many of the species and hybrids. It was a beautiful collection of lily slides and one which the membership will long remember.