Nov 052015
Tom Kuligowski

Tom Kuligowski

Our speaker for this month, Tom Kuligowski, is an avid orchid grower specializing in angraecums. He is also an award-winning photographer with over 45 years of experience. In addition he runs a great information web site on angraecums (

Angraecums tend to be known for their beautiful, showy flowers, many of which are fragrant at night. Some can even become fantastic specimen plants in just a couple of years. With both species and several sought after hybrids, angraecums offer some unique shapes along with the most pristine whites of any orchids. Please note that not all are large and showy; some can be quite compact and make great windowsill plants. An amazing fact most people are not aware of is that they can thrive in South Florida sub-tropical weather or just as easily on a windowsill in the not so warm north if given the chance.

This presentation will provide both hobbyist and serious growers with fundamental guidelines on how to grow these beauties successfully and in turn grace you with years of enjoyment. All of the photography within the presentation are of plants from Tom collection. Many of them showing the various growth stages (from seedlings to first time bloomers to specimen plants). So let’s give Tom a big South Florida Orchid Society welcome.

Jorge Merlo
SFOS Program Director

We will also once again be having our popular silent auction. In addition, Tom will have some angraecoids for sale.

Dan & Margie Orchids will be providing plants for our raffle table this month.

Last, but not least, be sure to sign up for our annual Holiday party! All the details are in the menu below.


Oct 122015
Rafael Romero

Rafael Romero

What a time to be an orchid nut in South Florida. The 69th Miami International Orchid Show has just ended and once again, the South Florida Orchid Society brings you a well-known international speaker.

Rafael Romero, was born in Caracas, Venezuela and graduated as a biologist from the Universidad Simon Bolivar. He began working with orchids in 1986 with his father in law, Henrique Graf, owner of Plantio La Orquidea, the largest orchid nursery in Venezuela.

Together with his wife, Rafael started a laboratory at Plantio La Orquidea in 1986 where they produce the species and hybrids for which they are well known. They moved to Sarasota in 2003 and established a 10,000 sq. ft. nursery featuring a many of the species and hybrids they produced in Venezuela as well as interesting species and hybrids from around the world.

So sit back and enjoy this special talk entitled “Orchids Tales”. Rafael will also be sharing his knowledge and experiences as well as answering questions.

In addition, Rafael will have a fine selection of orchids available for sale.

OFE International will be providing plants for our raffle table this month.
We will also be once again be having our popular silent auction!

Reminder: If you plan to bring plants for judging, be sure to have them registered no later than 7:30PM. This gives our team of judges time to properly evaluate your plants and present them for award photography. It also allows our judges to see this months program which starts at 8:00PM.

Sep 192015

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SFOS Members receive FREE admission to the show but you must show your membership badge and a photo ID at the box office to receive your FREE ticket!

Notice: There was an earlier post with incorrect hours listed for the show. The hours listed in the newsletter are also incorrect. The correct hours are from 10:00AM to 5:00PM, October 9th through the 11th, 2015. We apologize for the error.

Below you’ll find a list of vendors and a description of their specialties. There is also a separate pdf version with vendor contact information including live links. Just click the link below this table. 

SFOS 2015 MIOS vendors orchid teaserClick here for a pdf list of show vendors!

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Sep 062015
Armando Mantellini

Armando Mantellini

We at the South Florida Orchid Society bring the most distinguished world class orchidist speakers. This month we bring you a man recognized all over the world. A world class pioneer in Cattleya species, Armando Mantellini. Born in Caracas, Venezuela. With a master’s degree in both mechanical and electrical engineering, orchid breeding since 1966 in his native Venezuela is his true love. Armando is mostly interested in Venezuelan and Colombian cattleya species. Fresh from giving a lecture at the annually cattleya symposium, Armando will speak on Breeding Cattleya mossiae. So sit back and enjoy. The master is in the house.
Jorge Merlo—Program Chairman

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69th Miami International Orchid Show


Click Here for a list of Show Vendors



We are experiencing some problems with our site so some menus and content will unfortunately be unavailable until we can get the site repaired. I apologize for the inconvenience.

Aug 112015

In this day and age, all over the orchid community, we see long time growers and nursery owners retiring or just going out of business. We are delighted to find right in our own back yard a young couple ready to take on the challenge of turning their dream from hobby to a commercial nursery operation.

Angie Villanueva and Luis Del Pino purchased Ruben Sauleda’s nursery Ruben in Orchids, and right away, they started to add their touch. Adding new offices, remodeling the greenhouses and bring the beautiful grounds back to life and changing the name to Rio Orchids .Everyday management is run by Richard who worked with Ruben for over 30 years.

They continue to specialize in orchid flasking. At Rio, they cross their own amazing hybrids, which they sell to growers all over the world. They also maintain a supply of species and exotic orchids that are among our favorites. They are all grown to thrive in our South Florida environment.

Their presentation will focus on Orchid Propagation methods that have been in place for over 50 years. They will cover orchid pollination, flasking, seedlings, divisions, off shoots, back bulbs, and cuttings.

Let’s all welcome Angie and Luis to the South Florida Orchid Society family and support our local orchid nurseries.

Jorge Merlo
SFOS Program Director

RIO Orchids will be providing plants for both our regular and special raffle this month!

In addition, they will also have plants for sale!


  • 7:00PM Doors open. Plant judging registration begins.
  • 7:30PM Plant registration ends. Plant judging begins.
  • 8:00PM Program begins.

If you are bringing plants for judging, please have them registered by 7:30PM. No plants will be accepted for judging after that time. This allows our judges time to properly evaluate your plants and also allows them to enjoy the main program with you.

Remember to have your plants cleaned and properly presented. They should be free of debris, insects, spider webs, etc. Although not absolutely necessary, leaves should be wiped with either Leafshine or a little milk and water solution. This makes for a much better presentation and will show when the plants are photographed. 

Jul 132015

This month we’re presenting a special culture program with tips on how to get the most enjoyment from your orchids.

Our program includes…

Potting Media and Insecticides by Carlos Cahiz

Jorge Merlo– program undetermined at press time.

Vandeceous Orchids, culture and growing tips by Dan Christensen

You won’t want to miss this informative program!

Also, we will be having a Silent Auction this month

Here are the details…

Last month our board approved silent auctions to be conducted during our monthly meetings, when the visiting speaker does not provide plants for sale. These silent auctions are very successful and accepted by the membership at other societies. The rules are very simple and meant to facilitate and ease the whole process for everybody involved.

These are the rules:

Silent Orchid Auction is a society’s benefit exclusive to current members of SFOS to sell their plants at our meetings. Limited to 2 orchid plants per member. Members and/or guests can bid on any of the plants on auction. The donation to the SFOS after the auction will be 10% commission (minimum $1, commission rounded to nearest whole dollar) on the final auction price. For example: if a plant sales for $10.00, the commission will be $1.00. If the plant sells for $15.00 the commission will be $2.00 and so on. Bring your plants so we can have a successful silent auction on our next meeting July 15th.

Jun 082015
Ken Russ

Ken Russ

Our June speaker is Ken Russ, who together with his lovely wife Judy, have been growing orchids for more than 20 years and have become multiple AOS award winners. After so manyyears of growing orchids Ken and Judy realized there was a need to share their orchid growing knowledge with all level orchid growers so they decided to create some innovative and practical presentations specially geared to help Florida orchid society members perfect the art of orchid growing

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May 022015

Jim & Melana Davison: “Dendrobiums – Soft Cane, Hard Cane, Australian, Pendulous – Which is which?”

Jim & Melana Davison

Jim and Melana Davison are AOS Accredited Judges. They have an extensive and diverse orchid collection that seems to be continuously growing.  Not only involved in caring for their orchids, they are actively involved in several South Florida orchid societies. Melana is the current President of both the Orchid Society of Coral Gables and the South Dade Amateur Orchid Club. Jim is the past President of the Orchid Society of Coral Gables and the East Everglades Orchid Society.

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