September 2012 - Fred Clarke

We are fortunate to have return one of our favorite speakers and long time member and supporter of the Palomar Orchid Society, Fred Clarke of Sunset Valley Orchids, who will speak to us on “Growing the Best Orchids”.

Fred’s talk will cover multiple aspects of growing orchids including general orchid culture, repotting, potting materials, lighting, fertilization, what orchids grow best together, etc. Fred’s power point presentation will review the ‘best practices’ for growing a variety of orchids and include pictures of some of his novel hybrids and species.  The presentation should be of considerable interest to both the novice and advanced orchid hobbyist.  As many of our members know, Fred is an excellent, highly sought after lecturer in the orchid world so his presentation should not be missed.

Fred has been growing orchids for 34 years and has been hybridizing for 26 of those years. With over 26 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 is 

Fred is a passionate orchid grower whose curiosity in orchids is wide and varied. Although developing new Cattleya hybrids has been his sustaining interest, he is also actively creating new Bulbophyllum, Paphiopedilum and Aussie Dendrobium hybrids. Moreover, his pioneering work in Catasetum intergeneric hybrids led to the development of several notable hybrids, most recently the grex, Fredclarkeara After Dark, which produced “the closest flower color to black ever witnessed”. This grex received seven FCC’s and three AM’s on the first flowers shown for judging. 

Fred is an Accredited Judge in the Pacific South Region and a active trustee for the American Orchid Society. His plants have received hundreds of quality awards from the American Orchid Society. In addition to his many orchid activities, Fred is also the manager of the Flower Fields in Carlsbad.


No Culture Class: Since Fred will speak on multiple aspects of orchid culture, there will be no culture class this month.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 6:30pm - 9:30pm