Minutes of Meeting of Portland Chapter - October 21, 1954
Mrs. Ruth M. Hansen, Secretary
The October meeting was called to order by President C. I. Sersanous. New members and guests were introduced. The reading of the Minutes for the previous meeting were dispensed with in honor of our distinguished Guest Speaker.
Mr. Sersanous read a resolution which was adopted by a recent Directors Meeting whereby Chapters could affiliate with the Royal Horticultural Society. This being the first reading a second reading of this resolution must be made before action can be taken by the members. "See the January Bulletin for the full resolution."
Mr. P. H. Brydon then introduced Mr. E. H. M. Cox of Perth, Scotland as the Guest Speaker for the evening. Mr. Cox began his talk by giving a brief description of the Scottish gardens. On the whole gardening in Scotland is on a smaller scale and there is a great difference in the type of plant material grown along the western coast than the eastern. This is due to the warmer climate and heavier rainfall along the west coast.
Mr. Cox was a little disturbed about the apparent indiscriminate hybridization now practiced. He suggested that hybridization be done on definite lines with a direct purpose and object in view. The present Stud book lists over 40 varieties with griersonianum as a parent, none of which are any better than the parent.
As for himself, he has always preferred species to hybrids. In Scotland the amateurs and growers have made a point to select certain of the best forms of the species and have propagated them by cuttings or layerage. During last few years Mr. Cox has traveled over most of Scotland to see the best rhododendron gardens and to record them in his slide pictures.
We were then privileged to see many of his species slides. It was an education in itself to see these pictures. Mr. Cox considers R. macabeanum the finest of the large leaved varieties. R. spiciferum was a favorite among the low growing varieties. The late form of wardii is considered better than campylocarpum. The slide of souliei which was taken in Mr. Cox's garden showed the original plant which was raised from seed sent to Mr. Cox in 1919 by the Abbe Soulie.
Following these remarkable pictures we had a brief question and answer period:
Q. What kind of mulch do you use?
Ans. Peat, leaf mold and a cup of Bone meal mixed and applied to a depth of 3".
Q. What is best form of Repens?
Ans. Kingdon Wards form best.
Q. Where did you get your yellow decorum?
Ans. It came in a seed packet from Kingdon Ward. Lacteum is not worthy of garden culture. Sheriff introduced a yellow form of cinnabarinum which is free flowering, primrose yellow to apricot, dwarf to 2', grows easily and flowers in about 7 years.
Mr. Sersanous thanked Mr. Cox for his very fine talk and adjourned the meeting.