|Saintpaulia "Morgan's Chutney Popcorn"|
The first general meeting of the Vancouver African Violet & Gesneriad Society's 2015-16 club year will be held on Sunday, September 20 in the Cedar Room at VanDusen Botanical Garden. General meetings are hold on the third Sunday of September, October, November, January, February, March, and April; the June meeting is held on the second Sunday of June. Meetings usually begin at 2:00 p.m., except for the November and June meetings which begin at noon. Our Annual Show and Plant Sale is held on the first or second Sunday of May - watch this blog for notices of it and other VAVGS activities.
VAVGS is an excellent way to meet others with a similar interest in growing African violets and their many related plants - the gesneriads. Most gesneriads don't look anything like African violets but all have similar growing habits and are easy to keep happy inside our homes. Expect to be surprised at the variety - even African violets don't look like your Grandmother's did!!! See the photo above of an unusual-looking African violet called "Morgan's Chutney Popcorn". Wow - fluffy purple flowers with green edges! This beauty, grown by one of our members, won blue ribbons at our local show in May and also at an international show in San Francisco this summer.
General meetings of VAVGS consist of a short business portion, an educational topic related to gesneriad culture, a show/tell/ask session and a raffle of plant material - usually starter plants, leaves, cuttings, rhizomes or tubers, all donated by our club members. Many kinds of gesneriads are available in these raffles and most are ones you won't find in plant stores or nurseries around here! New members may wonder why there aren't more mature plants in the raffle. Anyone who's grown African violets or other gesneriads knows how easy it is to get lots of young plants from leaves and cuttings. While club members will want to keep their big mature plants to enter into the competition at our May show, we always have plenty of young plants from our propagation efforts to share. At first, taking home a leaf, cutting or small plant may not seem as exciting as a huge blooming specimen but young plants are better able to adjust to a new growing environment than a mature one that's been moved out of its happy home. Plus, with the knowledge that you gain from being a club member, you'll soon be able to turn that small plant, leaf, cutting, rhizome or tuber into a large beauty and know that you've done it all yourself!
Come join us to learn from, share with, and socialize with other gesneriad fans and take home a few of those promising little raffle items!