Florida Council of Bromeliad Societies


April 14, 2007


This meeting of the FCBS was held at the home of Moyna & Ed Prince, in Miami-Dade County, Florida.

The meeting was called to order at 1 pm by Jay Thurrott. Societies represented were: Broward, Central Florida, South Florida, Caloosahatchee, Florida East Coast, Florida West Coast, Gainesville, Sarasota, and Treasure Coast. A special welcome was made to the representatives of Treasure Coast Society and Sarasota Society. Each representative present was asked to introduce her/himself, and to say a few words about programs of events in her/his society.

We were privileged to receive as a very special guest Mr. Nat DeLeon, one of the founders of this council, as well as a previous representative from the Bromeliad Society of South Florida (BSSF). In his address to the members present Nat DeLeon reminisced how "Way back when", decades ago, it was that he would get together with other bromeliophiles throughout the State of Florida to find out things from each society. The goal was to share information and ideas or events to help develop each one's own society. Programming has always been a challenge and it paid to know who spoke about what, and how it was received. Needless to say, if the program was less than expected, it may not get recommended. Also, subjects of interest among a society's members were noted to seek a fulfilling program.

Changes of officers in a society's executive board may bring about changes of practices or fine details of administration resulting in losses, over time, of resources to that society.

Nat DeLeon suggested that, perhaps, every council member could list programs recently presented in her/his society and post it in the Council's quarterly newsletter for use by other representatives. He recommended that a Standing Rule be adopted, requiring the reporting of programs. This would also be a reminder that representatives need to perform some tasks as part of their participation in the Council.

Quarterly posting should keep the data manageable and Karen Andreas readily agreed to undertake coordinating this effort, pending data from each society being sent to her. Jay Thurrott remarked that " each society owes it to itself, as well as to the rest of the Council, to find out what is available and what is the best among those choices… Karen often has to scour material for every issue, yet all information about each society is pertinent and probably advantageous to others."

Bob Moxley/Gainesville suggested that each society could photograph and produce images of yearly shows, and of the Awards Table, for an archive available to its own members as well as to other societies. Carol Wolfe is going to assist him in creating such a record. Members also discussed the BSI slide programs although there are quality issues with the existing slides.

Karen will gladly serve as coordinator of data provided by individual societies on each one's Speakers Program and compile it for everyone's use. A Standing Rule will be considered at the next meeting; Jay asked that representatives sound out all member societies prior to considering a new rule.

Jay handed out copies of the minutes to those who needed them. There was one correction to minutes of January meeting: The correct amount sent for support of the Research Station in Honduras was $4,500. The donation to the BSI color fund was questioned and explained.

Treasurer Report was accepted as submitted, in Sudi Hipsley's absence. The total balance of the FCBS accounts is $13,320.85.

During our last meeting, Betsy McCrory was appointed to audit this council's financial records. Betsy submitted an entirely favorable audit, with all accounts in order.

Michael Andreas, webmaster, reported that all societies had sent their rosters except Broward and Sarasota. He also reported that there had been some problems with the company hosting our web site and the web hosting company had to be changed to Network Solutions, the company that also keeps the web name. Cost is $160.00 yearly, with more than the required space made available to the Council. The previous company had fallen into erratic behavior and inadequate response time. Network Solutions should work out much better. Michael announced that Australian bromeliad hybridizer Keith Golinski is registering his hybrids; Michael has 200 of his pictures to post.

Karen Andreas reported on the newsletter. The bromeliad sources list will be in the next issue of the newsletter. Karen asked representatives to announce at their meetings and in their newsletters that any nursery that is state inspected can be listed. The state roster will be published in the August issue of the newsletter. She asked that updates to the rosters be submitted no later than mid-July for inclusion in the August issue.

Ron Cave, reported on Evil Weevil Research Project: "Culture of larvae in Honduras is going quite well. The laboratory is strong and remains a good source of material for our Florida growing colony. Problems with Fed-Ex transportation caused delays and damage, but this is not a common occurrence. The three staff members at the Honduras' station work hard and well to maintain good results." He submitted a report, to be published in the May newsletter. Ron Cave's report was applauded and well received.

A judges symposium will be offered in Florida, in the late summer. Betty Ann Prevatt has details.

The Annual Bromeliad Society International Board of Directors' Meeting will be in July in New Orleans. Council members were encouraged to contact each one's local BSI Director to offer comments or ask for data.

Jay asked about the World Bromeliad Conference in 2008 and what should be this Council's role in this event? Should we present a table-top display? Do we take an ad, as a statement of support? There was support for an ad in the program; further discussions to continue.

The Bromeliad Extravaganza 2007 report was presented by Jose Donayre, president of the Broward Bromeliad Society. The set date is Saturday, September 29, 2007. There are five committees working on the preparations with emphasis on the quality of seminars and programs. Chester Skotak will be the speaker during the evening banquet, prior to the auction.

A Friday event may attract out-of-town visitors to spend the weekend. The location offers a newly renovated space with ample areas for our needs. There are very good facilities for vendors and visitors. Plans are to have a good fund-raising weekend, including plant sales and the Annual Auction.

Broward has secured $5,000 in donations which will allow sufficient publicity to advertise the Extravaganza widely. Individual Council and/orSociety members are encouraged to bring some of their own plants for the Members' Sales Table.

Each society that belongs to the FCBS is reminded that the contribution of plants for the Auction is expected, as well as much needed. All the money raised goes directly to the Council, yet last year, some societies neglected their duty at the Extravaganza hosted by the Bromeliad Society of South Florida. BSSF has donated twenty of Elton Leme's books, Bromeliads of the Atlantic Forest, which were presented to Extravaganza attendees last year, to be offered for sale during the auction.

Jay mentioned that the best thing for members of the Council to do in support of the Extravaganza is to talk to their society's members about the Extravaganza, and everything that will be available, plants as well as food and events, as well as include that information in the newsletters.

The banquet cost will be $35.00, to help defray cost of bringing in speaker. Nursery tours are a distinct possibility.

The question was asked about auction plants needing to be inspected prior to be taken out of the country? They do have to be inspected but that is the responsibility of the person taking the plants out of the country. Most people who do that are familiar with the process.

Karen read in the Tampa Bay newsletter that they are so enthusiastic they are already announcing the Extravaganza 2008, to be hosted by them!

Karen reported that the Australian book is being sent by ship, with an estimate of up to three months for arrival. No customs fees should be due. Cost shall be $8,246.53, including insurance & shipping. Each book should cost little more than $16. Should the Council decide to place another order and facilitate distribution beyond the societies, Betsy McCrory has volunteered to implement distribution. The FCBS is the sole distributor of these books in the United States. A second printing was required to accommodate our 500 copies request. Some societies have not committed firmly, but we have enough confirmed orders in hand. If any copies are needed for the 2007 Extravaganza the order should go in by July next.

The auction held by the Caloosahatchee Society brought in the amount of $2,127.00. WOW! An amazing example and proof of initiative.

Helga Tarver called Karen with a question: "What to do with accumulated historical and anecdotal materials passed down through each society?" Should there be an archive to store and preserve these important -and irreplaceable-materials? There needs to be a means of keeping these documents before they disappear. Jay asked for a committee to look into this. There were no immediate volunteers so he asked representatives to return to their respective societies and ask if any members would be interested in working on this project.

Society Reports were given.

Vicky Chirnside/CBS: Our January slide program was about happenings in 2006. We are already working on our auction and annual show.

John Moxley/Gainesville: The plant sale held in March was successful. They are looking forward to hosting the next meeting of this Council, on July 14th. We have a mystery/surprise in the works for those attending. Also, the Butterfly Rainforest in Gainesville has a great variety of bromeliads in their design and displays. We will hold our Annual Fall Sale at the Kanapaha Gardens.

Michael Michalsky/BSSF: Next week will be the Annual Show and Sale of the Bromeliad Society of South Florida, held at Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden.

Mark Peters, first time council member from the Treasure Coast Society: "It's my first meeting, and I'm glad to be here!"

Linda Sheetz/FWCBS: Green Thumb Festival held on April 28-29 in St Petersburg. Our annual auction coming up on May 1st, and our speaker for June will Terrie Bert. July will follow with Bingo Night!

Jay and Lynne Koths/SBS: Glad to be here representing the Sarasota society. Lynne reminisced about Wally Berg and Don Beadle as mentors to her growing interest in bromeliads. Their annual show will be held next week.

Calandra Thurrot/FECBS: Everybody's Flower Show was well attended. Our end of March Sale did very well. A group visit to the Aldriches in Ocala turned out to be a very popular event. Glad to say the membership numbers are up. Terrie Bert shall be visiting in the fall to present a slide program and bring some of her beautiful plants for sale.

Neal Ekengren/BSCF: Our sale at Leu Gardens did very well, and we have the annual show coming up, always held on Mother's Day weekend in Orlando. This event has always been a good resource for new members for our society. On May 28th we will have our Bromeliad Bingo night, and any new members also get a plant! Another good event is our 'Ramble Program' consisting of visits to tour members' gardens.

Jose Donayre/BBS: This is a busy time for us, we are having our annual show this weekend, right now. There were 227 entries brought by 23 members -about twice as many as last year-and sales are booming! After losing our meeting venue, we have secured a better location that will be available for the May meeting. Elections are coming up this month and a new board will be installed in May.

Another question: Does the FCBS Tax-exempt status include all of the members societies? Karen: The FCBS does not function as an umbrella for tax-exempt status for its members. Local societies are well advised to incorporate and protect their own status.

Jay reminded everyone to check the representatives and presidents contact lists for corrections and updates.

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned. (I don't have a time - do you remember?)