2016/2017 Events

Meetings are held at 7:30pm  at Beban Park Recreation Centre, 2300 Bowen Road.

Guests are welcome to attend.

 September 8, 2016. First meeting of new season.  6:30 PM
 Early start for potluck finger food before the meeting.

Speaker Kathy Claxton
Kathy’s love of all things gardening spilled over into a career change when she arrived on the island from Alberta in 1998. She completed VIU’s Master Gardener Program in 2003. Try as she might, retirement has come with great difficulty – working for 14 years at Arrowsmith Greenhouses in Qualicum Beach and also maintaining a small garden maintenance and consulting business — the achy bones and stiff joints have led her yet down another career path, garden coaching and public speaking.

September 30, 2016 – October 2, 2016.
ARS Fall Regional Conference, Newport Oregon.
Click here to view promotional YouTube video.

October 13, 2016.   Mike Stewart
Rhododendrons and Their Journey to Your Garden

His presentation will focus on species rhododendrons and the legendary explorers who discovered them. The presentation is complemented with many exceptional photographs of both rhododendrons in the wild, and the mountainous regions in Asia where they were discovered.
Mike is president of the Rhododendron Species Foundation, and a past president of the American Rhododendron Society. He has been honored with the Gold Medal from the American Rhododendron Society – their highest award.  Mike and his wife Maria own  Dover Nursery  in Sandy, Oregon which is known for its outstanding selection of species & hybrid rhododendrons.

November 10, 2016.  Dennis Bottemiller
Success with Rhododendron Cuttings

Dennis has been the Propagator and Nursery Manager for the Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden in Federal Way, Washington, for 17 years.

In that capacity, he has been rooting cuttings and growing seedlings of plants collected from all over the world. With the RSBG surrounding him, he is inspired with the largest collection of species rhododendrons in North America. Dennis works his magic with tiny seeds and cuttings. Think of all the variables that Dennis needs to take into consideration when propagating plants from a diverse range of temperatures, altitudes, soils and amounts of moisture.

When you want to propagate a certain rhododendron to create a copy of the original, taking cuttings is a very reliable method of propagation. Dennis will focus on the parent plant from which the cuttings come so that there is a greater success in getting the cuttings to root. He will illustrate some of the variables in plant growth, culture and physiology which can be manipulated to our advantage. Dennis will show that paying attention to the details will pay off in the end.

December 8, 2016.  Christmas Potluck & Auction  6:30 PM

Please bring your favorite finger food for all to share. The social committee will provide coffee and a non-alcoholic punch.  A box will be provided for donations to the Loaves & Fishes Foodbank.     Please bring your own plates, glasses/ cups,
and eating utensils.     Members are requested to bring items to donate to the auction (plants or other items ) which will be held after dinner.

January  12, 2017.  Garth Wedemire.
The Rhododendron Species Foundation & Botanical Garden.

Garth joined the Vancouver chapter in 1975 and was a founder and first president of the Fraser Valley chapter.   He was awarded ARS Bronze medals in 1989 &  2001 as well as  the ARS Silver medal in 2013. Garth serves on the board of the Rhododendron Species Foundation. He has helped set up and maintain chapter websites in District 1 (including ours since 2002). His extensive knowledge and skilled photography have made him a popular presenter over the years.  Garth and his wife Sue live in the Comox Valley after moving from Maple Ridge to accommodate their expanding plant collection.

February 9, 2017.  Glen Jamieson
Rhodo trekking & Vireyas

Glen is a member of the Mount Arrowsmith Chapter and serves as editor of the Journal of the American Rhododendron Society.  He has has traveled extensively in both Central
and South America and Asia. Since 1999, he has established a large collection of tropical rhododendron section Vireya  and now is a strong advocate of these beautiful plants.

March 9, 2017.  Bernie Dinter
The Changing Focus of Gardening

Bernie Dinter has owned Dinter Nursery for 43 years.  He started with a degree in Plant Science from the UBC Department of Agriculture. It has now changed its name to ‘Land and Food Systems’ reflecting the changing perception of growing plants. Society’s expectation of gardening is changing with the new millennium generation being interested in gardening but from the perspective of growing food and sustaining the environment. Today’s gardener is less knowledgeable but expects a garden to supply food, be bee and pollinator friendly, and reflect their environmental values. These values must be reflected by the businesses they deal with. Add to these challenges the decline of the independent garden centre and the presence of numerous box stores selling garden products. With the changing social values, the horticultural industry has to keep itself relevant.

April 7, 8 2017. Rhododendron Species Symposium, Federal Way WA

Click here to go to RSF website for details.

April 13, 2017.  Philip MacDougall.
Green Patience – Woodlanders: The Common & Rare, easy & recalcitrant

Patience. That’s the formula for woodlanders. Seen as the logical perennial companion to Rhododendron gardens, chosen properly these charmers offer interest throughout the year. The cyclic element of birth, growth, death and regeneration add flow to the static structures of evergreen shrubs. Familiar from long use in our gardens, old standbys from Europe and America have left the group with a dowdy reputation. New breeding and collections from Asia have added heaps of surprisingly good plants. Painfully winnowed to only my very favorites, I’ll discuss the common and rare, easy and recalcitrant, with focus paid to Polygonatums and Epimediums.

Philip is an executive member of both the Alpine Garden Club of BC and the Vancouver
Rhododendron Society; as well as a plant explorer who has botanised in
Taiwan, Chile, Argentina, Tasmania, Korea, Turkey, Japan and China, in
addition to the Yukon, Newfoundland, North Carolina and the Siskiyou
Mountains in North America.  His garden & nursery  is named  Chlorophyllia .

April 27 – 30, 2017. ARS Annual Convention, Eureka, CA.
Click here
to go to the website for the Eureka Chapter which is hosting

May 7, 2017.  24th annual Truss Show & Sale 9:30 AM – 2 PM
Centennial Building, Beban Park

May 11, 2017.  Annual General Meeting.
Speaker Bill McMillan – 5 gardens worth visiting in Victoria

Bill is a geologist by training but focused on rhododendrons when he retired. He volunteered to work in the Rhododendron and Hosta Garden of the Horticulture Centre of the Pacific  in 1999 and shortly afterward took over as curator. He was in charge of the Victoria Rhododendron Society Show and Sale for 5 years and was Registrar of the American Rhododendron Society convention in Victoria in 2006. He is a past president of the Victoria Rhododendron Society and is presently on the board.

Bill propagates rhodos from cuttings and grows them from seeds. He has given presentations on basic rhododendron culture to many garden clubs, Master Gardener’s classes and to students. Bill describes himself as an enthusiast, rather than an expert.

May 13, 14, 2017.  NRS Garden tour.

13 gardens in Nanaimo & Nanoose open from 10 AM – 4 PM

May 20, 2017.  Our Club Bus tour.
Leaving Woodgrove Mall parking lot near Chapters at 7:30 AM, returning approximately 6 PM. Cost $45.  Comox Valley & Campbell River gardens.  Contact John Deniseger to reserve.

May 20 & 21.  12 Noon – 4 PM  Open house on Clayoquot Island, Tofino 

Free transportation to see the rhodos on Clayoquot (aka Stubbs Island),  a once-a-year chance to visit the privately owned property which is normally closed to the public.
Click here to see description on Nature Conservancy of Canada website

June 10, 2017  Windup Potluck & BBQ hosted by Art & Susan Lightburn  4:30 PM

May 2018  International Rhododendron Conference Europe

(Click here to go to conference web page.)
Registration will open in May 2017.

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