The Florida East Coast Bromeliad Society

Next meeting Sunday, November 8th – 1:30p.m.

Wm. A. Finney Memorial Garden Center

837 N. Oleander Ave., Daytona Beach

Novemberr, 2009

The Holiday Season is Upon Us!

President Joan Campbell – 672-7382

Vice President – Jerry O’Keefe – 407/767-2442

Secretary – Calandra Thurrott – 761-4804

Treasurer – Eve Krauth – 763-2084


That’s right, it’s that time of year again when we begin thinking of Thanksgiving, followed closely by Christmas and then let’s not forget New Year’s - it’s exhausting just thinking about it! While you make your plans for the holidays don’t forget the annual FECBS Christmas party. Just like in years past, we’ll have a holiday luncheon and plant exchange – good food, good company, mark it on your calendar for December 13th. More details will be provided at this month’s meeting.

Last month’s meeting-

I think everyone enjoyed Bud Martin’s program on the selection of the "right" bromeliad for the "right" light levels and I don’t think any of us ever made the connection between appropriate light levels for groups of bromeliads and comparable light requirements for other, common garden plants. Thank you Bud – that’s certainly an excellent way for beginners to relate to appropriate growing conditions without the confusion of "partial sun", "morning sun", "some sun" or the ever-puzzling "foot candles" and "lumens".

This month’s meeting-

The bus trip to Tropiflora was great fun, but we never really had an opportunity to see what plants our members selected to bring home with them. This month we are asking everyone to bring in at least one plant that they purchased at Tropiflora for our Show and Tell feature. What is its name? Why did you select that plant? What does it look like? Inquiring minds…and FECBS club members want to know. Weren’t able to make it for the bus trip? No problem - bring another plant that you acquired somewhere else (one of our raffles, a gift from a friend, a plant sale somewhere else, etc.) for discussion.

Raffle Plants

We generally have a raffle at the conclusion of each meeting and, in case you were wondering where those raffle plants came from – they come from donations by club members. Unfortunately, the same club members seem to be the only ones bringing plants for the raffle each month, so this month we are asking all of you to bring at least one plant from your collection for our raffle. Let’s all participate in this popular club meeting feature!

The annual Bromeliad Extravaganza…

is almost here and for those of you who are new members or who haven’t attended one of these events in the past, this is really something special! The dates are November 13th – 15th and it will be held at the Orlando Renaissance Airport Hotel, just north of the Orlando airport (as you might expect!). In years past we have made it a point to have as many of our club members attend as possible and to try to sit together at the banquet. This worked out well until we began having so many members there that we were unable to all sit at the same table. This isn’t necessarily a bad trend – if we get enough people from our club then we can take up two tables! Friday night includes a "dessert social" (remember – "stressed" spelled backwards is "desserts"!)which should be fun, but as a new feature this year the plant sales area will be open for a short time following the social. Here’s your chance to get those choice sale plants before the usual Saturday morning crowd has picked them over already! Saturday will be a day of the sales room being open all day, while seminars and raffles take place throughout the day. Saturday evening starts with the banquet and is followed by a rare plant auction – here’s your chance to bid on unusual and scarce bromeliads that are not often seen for sale. If some of the bidding gets a bit high for your tastes, keep in mind that this is all for a good cause with the auction proceeds going to the Florida Council of Bromeliad Societies, so don’t be afraid to jump in with your bids. Sunday is a bus tour of bromeliad nurseries in the area as well as several personal collections at private residences. Doesn’t this sound like an interesting weekend? Pencil it in on your calendars and be sure to get your reservations in for this once a year event. You won’t want to miss it!

Organizations and Acronyms-

Sometimes it’s a bit confusing to our newer members (it’s confusing enough to me, so I can only imagine what our new members and visitors must be thinking) when we mention the miscellaneous organizations that we deal with or are affiliated with. Couple this with acronyms that are frequently tossed out in reference to these organizations and it can be quite bewildering indeed. In an effort to clear some of this up, I thought it might be useful to discuss some of these organizations and their abbreviations:

FECBS – (That’s us!) The Florida East Coast Bromeliad Society. was formed a number of years ago as an off-shoot from the Seminole Bromeliad Society. A group of members of that society tired of driving from the Daytona Beach area to Sanford for club meetings and decided to form a new bromeliad club a bit closer to home. The first meetings were held in Sugar Mill Gardens in Port Orange under the ancient oak trees, but soom moved to the Wm. A. Finney Memorial Garden Center in Daytona Beach where FECBS now meets monthly throughout the year.

Council of Garden Clubs of the Halifax Area – also referred to as the Halifax Council of Garden Clubs. This is a consortium of seven garden clubs that meet in the Daytona Beach area at the Wm. A. Finney Memorial Garden Center at 837 N. Oleander Ave. This 1930’s vintage house was deeded to the Council of Garden Clubs after the owner passed away with no heirs. Although there is no mortgage on the house, the expenses associated with its upkeep are shared by the 7 member clubs. We pay annual dues toward this along with a yard maintenance fee and in return, have the use of this house for FECBS meetings. Each of the seven clubs that comprise this group provides representatives to attend the monthly meetings(from October to May) of the Halifax Council of Garden Clubs where items of common interest are discussed. The meeting in May is an annual "luncheon", hosted each year by one of the member clubs. This year it’s our turn. Every year, with the exception of 2009, the Halifax Council of Garden Clubs has held a judged flower show that includes floral arrangements and horticultural entries. This event has been sponsored each year by the Daytona Beach News Journal, but this sponsorship ended with the prolonged legal difficulties faced by the paper. Presently the Council of Garden Clubs is looking into the possibility of hosting a flower show in either the fall of 2010 or spring 2011.

FCBS – This is the Florida Council of Bromeliad Societies, a league of 11 bromeliad societies from around the state. Dues are paid by each society based on their current membership numbers and these moneys are used to meet the operating expenses of the Council. The Florida Council publishes a quarterly newsletter that is mailed to the members of each society and maintains a website ( that is constantly updated with new photos of bromeliads, articles of interest and links to other sites featuring related information. The Mexican Weevil control project has also been backed and largely funded by the Florida Council. Representatives from each of the member societies meet quarterly with the meeting hosted by each of the societies on a rotating basis. Agenda items for each meeting are issues concerning all member societies, and, in turn, their memberships. A newer initiative is the bromeliad clone preservation project. Each year one of the FCBS member societies hosts a "Bromeliad Extravaganza" with the assistance of all member societies. This year’s event is hosted by the Bromeliad Society of Central Florida and next year’s will be by the Treasure Coast Bromeliad Society. The Extravaganza always includes a plant sale, banquet, and rare plant auction and often features tours of nearby gardens or nurseries. It should be noted that other bromeliad clubs exist in the state that are not members of the Florida Council.

BIC – This is the Bromeliad Identification Center and is located at Selby Gardens in Sarasota. The center maintains a living collection of specimen bromeliads and a library on the site contains the original collection material that was used in describing and naming bromeliads as they were discovered and collected for identification. Operating expenses of the BIC are funded jointly by donations from the public, by Selby Gardens, by the BSI and by donations from the Florida Council of Bromeliad Societies.

BSI – This is the Bromeliad Society International, an organization made up of individuals from around the world as well as affiliate organizations (our club is an affiliate society) and dedicated to promoting research, education and conservation of bromeliads. Many BSI members live in areas where there are no bromeliad societies nearby and therefore are not members of local societies. The BSI publishes a widely-respected journal every 2 months describing new discoveries as well as other news of interest to the bromeliad community and maintains a website ( with information relating to bromeliad culture, a seed fund, an on-line store and other information of interest. The BSI sponsors a World Conference that includes speakers, tours of gardens, a plant sale, banquet and rare plant auction. This event is hosted every 2 years by an affiliated society. The next World Conference will be in New Orleans in July of 2010. Proceeds from the event are used to fund operating expenses of the organization.

Cultivar Registry – This is a function of the

BSI and is a registry of bromeliad cultivars and hybrids. Hybridizers submit documentation and photos of newly created hybrids to be registered by the Cultivar Registry in accordance with rules established by the ICBN (International Code of Botanical Nomenclature). Bromeliads that are not registered in the Cultivar Registry and are entered in judged bromeliad shows are not eligible for top awards.

Standard and/or Judged Bromeliad Show – This is a public show of bromeliads, sanctioned by the BSI and judged by panels of individuals who have been trained and accredited as bromeliad judges by the BSI. Format for the holding of the show must be in accord with BSI requirements.

Frost Blanket

At last month’s meeting Joan announced that George Aldrich has frost blanket material available in 15’ widths, but I think everyone rushed off after the meeting without remembering to sign up to get some. It’s $1.25 per running foot (Example:  10’ x 15’  piece is  $12.50.). If you don’t have any of this on hand, you really need some. It’s a great way to keep frost and cold weather from ruining your bromeliads. A single layer of this is said to provide 3 to 5 degrees of protection for any plants underneath it. There will be a sign up sheet at this month’s meeting.


You can always pick a bromeliad grower out in a crowd – that’s the person with the scratches all over their hands and arms. Recently I came across an inexpensive source of gloves (they ain’t pretty, but they’re pretty comfortable) that have an extended gauntlet to protect your forearms as well as your hands while working with your plants. They are cotton with a poly coating on the palms and fingers to make them last longer than just cotton gloves. The size that I ordered is marked "large", but they’re more like "itty bitty", so I’ve reordered the "extra large" size. These will be available to club members at what I paid for them($3/pair) in either the "large" or "extra large" size.

Other stuff…

Sherry Stearns reports that a resident on Terragona Way in Daytona has a large number of bromeliads for sale at low prices. They were former nursery/landscape people and from a description of the plants, it sounds like they are Guzmanias in various colors. See Sherry for details at the meeting.


Upcoming Events:

November 13th – 15th , 2009

Bromeliad Extravaganza, hosted by the Central Fl. Bromeliad Society at the Orlando Renaissance Hotel (544 Forbes Place, Orlando 32812.) See the registration form on the next page

November 21st - 22nd, 2009
Treasure Coast Bromeliad Society
Clinic and Sales Booth
Heathcote Botanical Gardens
210 Savannah Road, Ft. Pierce 34982

December 4th - 6th, 2009
Caloosahatchee Bromeliad Society Show and Sale -Terry Park, Fort Myers
Judged Show on Friday, Dec. 4th
Show and Sale open to the public Saturday, ec. 5th 9am -5pm, Sunday, Dec. 6th, 10am- 4pm. (this is always a great show!)

January 23rd, 2010

Halifax Council of Garden Clubs annual garage sale fund raiser at the Wm Finney Garden Center – corner of Jessamine and Oleander Avenues.

April 17-18, 2010

Bromeliad Guild of Tampa Bay Show and Sale.