Orchids continue to be flower of choice for many

Ron Stillman, Fay Partridge with Marlene and Ivan Rapley of the Childers and Isis District Orchard Society.

By Angela Norval

When it comes to the intricacies of growing the often-difficult orchid, there is one group that has it down pat.

The Childers and Isis District Orchid Society Inc has been operating for 39 years and has about 65 members, with the oldest in their nineties and new members always welcomed.

The society grows a variety of these stunning species of flower including catteya, dendrobium, vanda, oncidium, paphiopedilum, phalaenopsis and Australia native cymbidium.

Childers and Isis District Orchid Society publicity officer Fay Partridge said the society was pleased to share its knowledge of growing orchids with new members.

“To get the best results with orchids you need a shade house of about 75 per cent shade cloth, depending on the type of orchid you are growing; as different shade is needed for some orchids as some like the heat more than others,” she said.

“Sterilized bark and charcoal, clean pots, cutting tools, spray for insects and fungus and also fertiliser are also a must.”

The society will showcase its orchids at a charity show at the Isis Cultural Centre in Churchill Street, Childers on Friday 19 March starting at 8am and running until 4pm, and Saturday 20 March from 8am until 1pm, with trophies being presented on Saturday at 1pm.

The charity show is a fund-raiser for the RACQ LifeFlight Rescue.

“We all hope we never need a ride in the chopper as a patient,” Ms Partridge said.

“We were lucky enough to visit the Sunshine Coast hangar a few years ago and look over what they have and can do in the helicopter which was amazing.

“Eight minutes after a call the chopper is in the air, it is just incredible.”

Admission to the show is $2 and there will be raffles during the day as well as refreshments available.

Orchids and supplies will be on sale, and there’ll be an orchid potting demonstration each day about 10am.