November 2012 - Gil Ho

Gilbert J. HoGilbert J. HoStanhopeas are the upside-down jewels of the orchid world. They are not often cultivated but fairly easy to grow in our Southern California climate with a few basic rules. These plants are highly fascinating as their pendant flowers are among the most highly evolved and specialized of all orchid flowers. The flower spikes emerge through the bottom of the growing basket to hang freely like birds in flight.  With an emphasis on the roughly 70 species currently recognized, Gil's talk will cover basic information about different Stanhopea growing conditions in nature and the origins of Stanhopea collecting and identification. Hybridizing stanhopeas will be mentioned briefly and the talk will conclude with an overview of cutlure conditions for growing Stanhopeas in our Southern California area. This section will serve as this month's culture class.

Gilbert J. Ho, MD, is a practicing cognitive neurologist in Rancho Bernardo, neuroscience researcher and volunteer professor in neurology at UCSD. He has been an avid orchid enthusiast and collector for about 12 years.  Starting with one Phalenopsis back when he first moved to San Diego for his neurology fellowship training, he has expanded over the years and his collection now includes hundreds of plants including hybrids and some species from the genera Paphiopedilum, Cattleya, Cymbidium, Oncidium, and others.  In the last 4 years, he has focused his collection primarily on Paphiopedilum, Stanhopea and Neofinetia, maintaining them in a small greenhouse and several shade structures. Gil has been a member of the Palomar Orchid Society and the AOS for more than 10 years and has been active as an officer in the POS for many years. He has been serving in the position of president for the last 4 years. As his latest project, he is now fanatically collecting as many Stanhopea species and hybrids as can be found, and he also has developed an interest in their hybridization.

Wed, 11/07/2012 - 6:30pm - 9:30pm