Welcome to the Palomar Orchid Society Website!

The Palomar Orchid Society, incorporated in December of 1965 was formed when a few people banded together to talk about orchids. We then grew and bloomed into the roughly 200-member group of orchid enthusiasts that we have today. We represent everything orchid in North San Diego County! Come and join us!!

The Palomar Orchid Society is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the understanding and cultivation of both hybrid and species orchids. We welcome members of all levels to join us for orchid fun and learning! Our mission is to promote interest in the appreciation of orchids and to provide an opportunity for their display and the exchange and dissemination of information relating to their culture.

Next Monthly Meeting

Next general meeting: October 5, 2022

The Palomar Orchid Society generally meets at 6:30 pm the FIRST WEDNESDAY of every month in the Gowland Meeting Room of the Carlsbad City Library. The George and Patricia Gowland Meeting Room is located in the Carlsbad City Library on Dove Lane, just off El Camino Real in southern Carlsbad. The address is 1775 Dove Lane, Carlsbad, CA 92011.

September 2022 – Jerry Spencer and Ken Campbell

For September, we welcome two of our veteran, highly successful orchid hobbyists, Ken Campbell and Jerry Spencer, to present our second culture session of the year. Both members have received multiple awards for their impressive orchids at local shows and each has several years of experience in growing and maintaining a variety of orchid classes. For this novel culture meeting, Ken and Jerry will discuss the challenges of growing in greenhouse and shade structure environments and the steps they take to grow their most beautiful orchids. Not only are they growing in different environments, but their collections are at the opposite extremes in size. Ken grows in a small greenhouse structure, while Jerry grows on more than 2 acres of shade and greenhouse structures.  . This should be a very interesting and informative presentation not to be missed so please bring your friends and orchid growing questions to the meeting.  Jerry and Anita Spencer have agreed to provide the orchids for our opportunity table this month. We also will have some Cal-Orchid plants for sale on the Silent Auction table.

Wed, 09/07/2022 - 6:30pm - 9:30pm

August 2022 – Rene Van Rems

Rene Van RemsRene Van Rems

We are delighted to welcome Rene Van Rems, AIFD (American Institute of Floral Designers) to our society for the first time. Rene is “artist in residence” at the San Diego Botanic Garden and has produced 20 of the Gala in the Gardens fundraisers from its inception. Rene knows the garden well throughout his 42 year relationship with the former Quail Botanical Garden, ever since he landed from Amsterdam as a horticulture exchange student. He is the San Diego Botanic Garden Creative Director for the Palomar and San Diego County Orchid Society’s “World of Orchids”, which just finished a sell-out 6-week exhibition.

In his talk titled "Artistic Design of the World of Orchids Show at the San Diego Botanic Garden" Rene will share his creative insights as it relates to plant display, composition, and how to get the most visual value of each species. Rene will present a visually exciting lecture on the principles and elements of design, focusing on color, texture and proportion. He will also cover the subject of visual perception and the role our emotions play in viewing (artistic) works of art. Enjoy a custom produced “behind the scenes” tour of the highly popular SDBG “World of Orchids”. The plant table will consist of the remaining plants from Fred Clarke’s donated cattleyas plus a few others.    Read more »

Wed, 08/03/2022 - 6:30pm - 9:30pm

July 2022 – Scott McGregor

Scott McGregorScott McGregorWe are delighted to welcome Scott McGregor to speak on "Pushing Limits -- Growing Species in Southern California.” We are blessed to live in a great climate for growing orchids outdoors and Scott will share with us his story of an experiment to try growing over 500 orchid species without a greenhouse in coastal Southern California. Not all succeeded, but many that were thought to require a greenhouse have been proven to thrive in our climate. Scott’s talk will inspire those without a greenhouse to try some new species, and for those with a greenhouse -- you can make room for more plants by moving some of your current plants outside. Scott’s presentation will be streamed on Zoom for those members and friends who are unable to attend in person.   Read more »

Wed, 07/06/2022 - 6:30pm - 9:30pm

June 2022 – Fred Clarke

Fred ClarkeFred Clarke We are happy to welcome back Fred Clarke who will speak on ‘Spotted and Splashed Cattleyas’. Spotted and splashed cattleyas come in many colors and shapes. Fred will teach us about the important breeding plants and what hybrids are available for the orchid enthusiast and highlight many of the interesting orchids he has developed in this class. In conclusion Fred will cover the ‘best growing practices’ for cultivation of these colorful and showy orchids.

As many of you know, Fred is a world renown hybridizer and grower of award winning cattleya species and hybrids as well as several other classes of orchids. He is also a long time, generous supporter of the Palomar Orchid Society and one of our most favorite speakers. Fred has been growing orchids for over 42 years and has been hybridizing for 38 of those years. With over 34 years as a professional grower and manager in the horticultural industry, Fred applies these skills at his orchid nursery, Sunset Valley Orchids, located in Vista, California, just north of San Diego. His nursery’s website has considerable information, plants for sale and many beautiful pics of his award-winning orchids.

Fred is a passionate orchid grower whose curiosity in orchids is broad and varied. Although developing Cattleya hybrids has been his sustaining interest, he is also actively creating new Paphiopedilum and Aussie Dendrobium hybrids plus some other generas including Sarcochilus, Zygopetalum Alliance, Lycaste, and Stanhopea and their relatives.   Read more »

Wed, 06/01/2022 - 6:30pm - 9:30pm

General Meeting May 2022

May 2022 – Carlos Lopez

Carlos LopezCarlos LopezPOS welcomes back our friend Carlos Lopez as our May speaker. Carlos will present an interesting talk on ‘Habinerias and their Hybrids’. He will review the species and hybrids from this class of orchids and discuss culture and care for these unusual and beautiful terrestrial orchids.

Many of us know Carlos from his work at Sunset Valley Orchids. Carlos is a Business student at Mira Costa College who has been cultivating orchids for over 10 years. His orchid venture began at the age of thirteen years old when he started to follow his father to work at Sunset Valley Orchids. Before he knew it, he was volunteering at the nursery and was helping clean orchid flasks, repot orchids, and doing small tasks. Carlos eventually began to become more involved in the nursery's operations/maintenance and started to take part in attending orchid shows and selling orchids at the SVO booths. He is currently Sunset Valley Orchids Greenhouse specialist and has years of experience with Cattleya, Catasetum, Australian Dendrobiums, and Sarcochilus orchids. Carlos is currently training to become an American Orchid Society Judge and works with Orchid Digest as well. This month’s plant table will consist of orchids from Carlos’s collection and from SVO. 

Wed, 05/04/2022 - 6:30pm - 9:30pm

General Meeting April 2022

April 2022 – Alex Nadzan & Bill Wong

Bill WongBill WongAlex NadzanAlex NadzanDue to a last minute cancellation of our planned April speaker, we are replacing the speaker with a program addressing ‘Practical Aspects of Pest Identification and Management’. This is a timely topic as we go forward into Spring where pests and diseases become more of a problem as the weather improves.  Alex Nadzan and Bill Wong will discuss the common orchid pests and diseases we deal with and provide practical methods to address them using both organic and chemical treatments that are readily available to the orchid hobbyist. Topics will include identifying bacterial and fungal diseases, mealybugs, scale, thrips, slugs and snails, viruses and rodent damage and how they can be controlled during the growing season. There will be a demo on use of Rega virus test strips to detect common orchid viruses.  Attendee participation is encouraged and there will be ample time for discussion and questions at the meeting. 

The plant table will consist of plants from SVO and everyone who participates will be guaranteed of at least one plant for the evening.

Wed, 04/06/2022 - 6:30pm - 9:30pm

March 2022 – Tim Culbertson

Tim CulbertsonTim CulbertsonOur society welcomes back Tim Culbertson who will talk about development of new Zygopetalum hybrids. Tim is an excellent speaker and orchid enthusiast who will illustrate new directions in Hawaii and in the US to make temperature-tolerant miniature Zygos. These plants are easy to grow and flower, are vigorous, and have low cultural demands; many will grow easily outdoors in Southern California.  Although many Zygos look similar, different breeding lines from around the world have pushed the look of Zygos in radical and wild directions.  Many genera contribute to these new hybrids, and Tim will share will some of these with you, as well as help identify some of the important parents in the backgrounds of new and modern colors and appearances found in this genus.  By the end of this presentation, attendees will have a new appreciation of what goes into breeding trends for these types of plants, as well as an appreciation of their beautiful flowers and ease-of-growth, both indoors and outside.  Tim’s presentation is not to be missed and he will have a few of these beautiful plants for sale at the meeting.   Read more »

Wed, 03/02/2022 - 6:30pm - 9:30pm