Report on the 1953 Show of the A. R. S., Portland, Oregon
C. T. Hansen
The Portland Chapter of the American Rhododendron Society held its Ninth Annual Show at the Test Garden on May 2nd and 3rd, this being an early date, a great number of Species were shown. On May 30th and 31st a showing of the late varieties were on display at the same location but no judging or Awards were made at this late showing.
Mr. George Grace won the Dr. Corbin Cup 11. This was his third straight win on Cup II and gave him permanent ownership. Mrs. Sophie Cason was again runner-up as she was last year.
In Class 30, Mr. Rudolph Henny won the Dr. Goodman Cup III on his new American Seedling R. china x Decorum. He also took second award with his cross, Loderi x Lady Bligh. Third place was awarded to Endre Ostbo with his cross of 'Mrs. Donald Graham' x 'Mrs. Holford'. There were only 12 entries in class 30 this year due mostly, I believe to the early date of the show. Last year when the show was held two weeks later there were twice as many entries. This New American Seedling Class has more interest for the rhododendron fanciers than any other class in the show as we are always sure to see the new, the different and the unusual both in form and in color.
Mr. Henry Swanson won the Award for the finest truss in the Show with a huge and perfect truss of Bulstrode Park. In fact, Mr. Swanson could hardly lose as he was also runner up with an exceptional truss of J. H. Van Ness.
Flower arrangements, using rhododendrons as their main theme were introduced into our show by our Show Chairman, Bob Bovee. There were 23 entries all by Garden Clubs. The Portland Garden Club won the highest award with an exceptional arrangement featuring long branches of williamsianum . Their award consisted of 15 new hybrid rhododendron plants. These plants were all fine varieties and were donated by E. R. Peterson, Arthur O. Wright and Theodore Van Veen, all wholesale growers and members of the Portland Chapter. The Second place arrangement was entered by Villa Garden Club and Third place was won by the Raleigh Garden Club.
The Rhododendron Nursery, Mr. Glen Savage proprietor, had the finest Commercial exhibit and for the third year won the coveted Bronze Plaque for his entry. Hillside Nursery, Mr. Rocco Cappelli, proprietor won second and the third place was won by Mr. Joe Klupenger of the Klupenger Nursery. Hillside Nursery won the Purple Ribbon for the finest plant in the show with his large plants of 'Loder's White', so covered with blooms that hardly a green leaf showed.
After the Directors had voted to have our show on the Test Garden Island, "the faithful" as the regular workers at the garden are called, spent four week ends erecting a light wood frame structure over which canvas was stretched to form a shelter for the cut truss show. The Commercial exhibits were grouped around this shelter but the whole 4 acres of the rhododendron garden became part of the show.
The show had a good break in the weather with both Sundays being warm days. The attendance for both shows was between 20,000 and 25,000 with the early show drawing the larger crowds. This was our first opportunity to really show the Test Garden in the two and one-half years of its existence and the thousands that came had nothing but praise for the Society's efforts.
A pat on the back should go to the Show Chairman, Bob Bovee and Co-Chairman, Cecil Smith for staging a really fine show. Dr. Royal Gick served as Chairman of the Judges who were: Donald Graham, Seattle: Jock Brydon of Salem and W. P. Riddlesbarger of Eugene for the Cut Trusses. The Commercial exhibits were judged by Ed. Erickson and R. H. Ellis, Jr. of Portland and W. L. May of Vancouver. Mrs. R. M. Bovee served as recording Secretary ably assisted by Mrs. Carl Heller and C. T. Hansen as Awards Chairman.
This report would not be complete without a word of praise for the very fine exhibit of Azaleas entered by Mr. and Mrs. M. C. Yettick of St. Helens, Oregon, and the excellent exhibit of rhododendron species leaves under glass displayed by our Co-Chairman, Mr. Cecil Smith. Special Awards were presented to each of these exhibits.
The show held on May 30th and 31st, was really a display of the midseason blooms. Mr. Henry Swanson again displayed many excellent blooms, Hillside Nursery filled two large tables displaying about forty varieties and John Henny displayed some of his Exbury azalea seedlings. The Yettick's of St. Helens again had a very fine table display of rhododendrons, azaleas and magnolias. The remainder of the tables were filled with trusses by non-Commercial members. The excellence of the blooms were really superior to the ones entered in our earlier show. All in all we feel that we have had a most successful season.