October Orchid Show at Bloedel!

White miltonia (pansy) orchid. Photo Radina Jevdevic

Come one, Come all! 

The New Orchid Show is Here!

Come be dazzled by the beauty of these extraordinary blossoms! The Vancouver Orchid Society has put together an extraordinary display of orchids to share with you – a variety of lady slippers (paphiopedilum and phragmipedium),  dancing ladies (oncidium), vandas, odontoglossums and a stunning butterfly orchid (psychopsis).  The show runs from September 30th until October 10th, 2011.

Members of the VOS will be on hand everyday from 11am to 3pm to answer questions you may have about orchid identification, repotting and maintenance.  They will also be conducting free orchid tours scheduled for 11am, 12noon and 2pm every day. Listen in and learn about this very diverse family of plants, how they grow in nature and why orchids have become such popular (and addictive) plants worldwide. Members also promise to dispel any myths that these exotic plants are hard to grow!

And don’t forget to look for the tiny orchids. They are some of the most delicate and spectacular specimens nature has created! Some even smell like chocolate mint. Be sure to bring your camera and your curiosity! You are in for a treat!

Bloedel Conservatory Hours:

September 18th – April 30th: 10am – 5pm

Photo Radina Jevdevic

Royal Robe orchid. Photo by Radina Jevdevic

Laelia spectabilis praectans. Photo Radina Jevdevic

Dendrobium obtussisepalum. Photo by Radina Jevdevic

See You There!

6 Top Reasons to Attend the Bloom Gala!

Stunning view of the VanDusen Garden. Photo by Raymond Lo

As you know, the Friends of the Bloedel Association has joined the VanDusen Botanical Garden Association. One of our combined goals is to help raise awareness about the incredible world of plants and why plants are so important to us all. The Bloom Gala is a fundraiser to not only help raise funds for educational programs and interpretation, but to also celebrate the new ‘Living Building’ Visitor Centre at the VanDusen Botanical Garden. The Gala evening is this Thursday, September 15th at 6pm! Do you have your ticket?

Here are the 6 Top Reasons to attend!

1. Be one of the first visitors to preview the amazing architecture of what is expected to be Canada’s first certified ‘Living Building‘. Inspired by the structure of a native British Columbian orchid, Busby Perkins+Will architects have designed this state of the art Visitor Centre to be ‘super green’. Come find out why!

2. Eat, drink and be merry! Great food, great drink and great music will flow throughout the evening. Edible Canada will delight your palate with West Coast seafood, Asian inspired dishes, First Nations delicacies, traditional African delights and decadent desserts. Sip wines from Ganton & Larsen Prospect Winery while you listen to the smooth sounds of the Weaver/Werth Jazz Quartet.

3. Meet the beautiful and talented CTV News Anchor, Tamara Taggart, honorary chair for the event.

4. Bid on a diverse array of fantastic items featured in both live and silent auctions!

5. People refresh their souls through nature. Know that you will be directly benefiting the health of garden visitors by supporting this wonderful expanse of nature and educational programs at the Bloedel Conservatory and VanDusen Garden in urban Vancouver.

6. Tickets are tax deductible! The VanDusen Botanical Garden Association a registered non-profit organization. (Be sure to write a quick note on the ticket form that you would like a receipt when you purchase your ticket).

There are a limited number of tickets still available!

Purchase tickets online or stop by in person at the VanDusen Garden Administration office located at 5251 Oak Street at 37th Avenue and fill out your ticket form.

It will be a great night! See you there!

Fountain at Livingstone Lake. Photo by Nancy Wong

Making Hearts Happy!

As much as I visit the Bloedel Conservatory, our green oasis at the top of Queen Elizabeth Park, I rarely take time to read the Visitor Comment Book. But today was different. Today, I was waiting for a friend and didn’t want to stray too far from the front door. To bide time, I began to look through the pages of the Visitor Book. There were many heartfelt raves like “Wonderful!”, “Beautiful!”,  and “Wow!” However, I was not prepared for the more creative comments and touching sentiments.

These comments ranged from “Mindblowing” to “You need monkeys!”, to “Splendifulous“, “Breathtaking” and “Bellisimo“. “This is our first date here and we loved it“, “Will brag to everyone that I was here!” and from Sairin and Mustafa of India You made our hearts so happy! Thank you!

I was thrilled to see visitors hailing from near and far – not only local visitors from all over BC and every Canadian province, but also from around the globe. Here is testament that our little Conservatory truly is a World destination! I read page upon page of comments from Holland, Australia, Japan, Brazil, Germany, Belgium, China, Slovenia, England, Finland, Romania, Ireland, South Korea, Philippines, Italy, India, Switzerland, New Zealand, Venezuela and the Czech Republic (to name a few).

At that moment, I was so proud to have played a part in saving the Bloedel Conservatory! I think Bill Livingstone and Stuart Lefeaux, the two men who had the grand vision to build this floral conservatory would be very proud. Not to mention, this is exactly what Prentice Bloedel desired when he put forward the funding to build the dome: to showcase the beauty of the tropics through amazing floral displays and to familiarize and inspire people of all ages with the world of plants. I do hope the gardeners and staff at the Conservatory take a moment from time to time to read the Visitor’s Book. It is an uplifting tribute to their ongoing dedication and hard work that keeps the magic of the dome alive. Absolute enjoyment!”, “Fantastic!“, “Magnifique!” 

Post by Vicky Earle, Vice President, Friends of the Bloedel