20th Anniversary 

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Eurobodalla Orchid Club - President Tony Groube's Report - 2013

"This has been one of the busiest and most successful years that I can recall.

Following the November 2012 AGM, we had a boisterous “orchids only” auction which proved to be successful for vendors, bidders and the Club.

December saw our rather splendid Christmas Party at the Carroll’s home at Mossy Point, thank you to our hosts Tony and Sue, to Don and Margaret who put together the Hampers and Annual Point Score prizes, to Liz for making up an orchid hamper, and to everyone who chipped in - a great party and remarkable for the fact that we just beat the weather.

January, a month off from Club functions, however we were upset to hear of the deaths of Estelle Nielson and of Founder Member Edna Forbes.

Vice-President Jean Swindley was in charge for the 13 February meeting featuring in-house experts Sylvia on Cattleyas, Jean on Dockrillias and Peter Van Est on Pleiones. (Liz and the President were on Sabbatical in Thailand.)

24 February saw the President’s sausage sizzle at Malua Bay – another good informal day of orchids and lively chatter, plenty of eating and conviviality.

March was another big month for us with the Workshop at Narooma on 9th and 10th conducted by our guests Ray Clement, Tinonee Orchids and Bill Miles, Orchid Species Plus. We had to change our venue to the Narooma Golf Club and whilst this altered the financial outcome of the Workshop, it didn’t detract from the enjoyment, sharing of knowledge and the opportunity to acquire some good plants from our guest speakers.

Jane Wright, President of the Canberra Club, spoke on Pleurothallids and presented a slide show on a visit she’d made to Machu Picchu at our Club night on 13 March.

April was fairly quiet apart from the Annual General Auction Night when I was forced to commandeer assistance from Barry McPherson. A boisterous auction eventuated with much hilarity and outrageous repartee and results.

Neville Roper visited us in May and undertook a Mock Judging of plants benched at our Monthly Meeting. He explained current Judging Guidelines and Criteria. In addition to a greater understanding of Show requirements, some members took home some new and potentially championship sarcs.

In June, Alan Stevenson presented us with his slide show of the Orchids of WA which he’d prepared following his visit to last year’s AOC Confernce in Perth. Alan managed to sell a few of the Dendrobium Speciosums he’d bred.

The Annual Orchid Crawl was held in Moruya on 15th June and we were warmly welcomed to the Zacchers’ and then on to Leigh Forbes’ where Members were given the opportunity to purchase some of the collection of former Founder Member of the Club, the Late Edna Forbes.

By July, the Show season was on us, benching at the Club Night was light as was attendance – only seventeen turned out on this mid-winter evening to hear Liz’s presentation on pre-show preparation and presentation. We had a good and convivial night, notwithstanding.

Unfortunately, I missed the publicity stall at Moruya Markets on July 6th and the Winter Show on 12th and 13th because of knee replacement surgery. Jean took total control of the Show and Peter and Laurina took out Grand Champion. The Show concluded with recognition of Don Hayes’ significant birthday. Eighty years on!

August’s Club night saw a presentation of the Orchidwiz data base on 14th and the Spring Show at Narooma from 23rd to 25th. Despite Narooma’s new roundabout, under construction, we saw the most orchids on display of any coastal show for the year, and a triumph for Sue Carroll and her Pterostylis pedunculata.

In September we unveiled and christened the Club’s new projector with a presentation of the Chiang Mai Floral festival and orchid show held in February. Diane had selected a number of photos of pretty orchids and elephants from my camera for display.

Eddy and Karen Ruiz, our generous sponsors from Mogo Orchid and Fern Nursery, entertained members with the inaugural Tri-Club Fun Day at their nursery on 11th September. Clubs involved were Eurobodalla, Batemans Bay and Southern Riviera. The rather magnificent trophy for the best orchid on display went to Gloria Gustard, for the same specimen Masdevallia that went on to feature at the Regional Show in Canberra.

October seemed to be the biggest and busiest month of the year. The month saw the South and West Regional Conference and Show in Canberra on 5th and 6th October and 105 EOC plants being transported and shown on our display and general show benches. Congratulations to Gloria Gustard and Gordon Marion who won Championships, and in addition, had plants awarded along with Peter and Laurina Van Est. Eurobodalla’s Display featuring Helen Marshall’s backdrop artwork, and Jean Swindley’s detail in entering and labeling all 105 plants, saw us judged second in the competition for displays. A creditable effort, with thanks also to Gordon Marion for transport and logistical support. More than 1400 members of the public attended the one and a half day event.

Our October 9th Club night saw a Reprise of the Canberra event with the Club’s new projector getting another workout.

On 19th October the Club celebrated its 20th Anniversary with a Dinner attended by 56 Members and Guests. The celebration had been some two years in the planning and highlights included the launch of the booklet prepared by Don Hayes of the Club’s first twenty years, a presentation to Members of a cymbidium, Dalmeny Splash originally bred by Theo Schutz, and mericloned by Trevor Hughes of Firetail Orchids. Eurobodalla Shire Council Mayor Lindsay Brown proposed a toast to the Club and Theo Schutz, Don Hayes and I cut the cake – Alex Brand, the fourth elected President of the Club was unable to attend, at the last moment. Members Colin Pearson, Ian Scott, Sue Carroll and Gordon Marion were formally recognized on the evening. A big thank you to all who contributed to this gala event. The photos on the website picture it well.

November has seen the Annual Sarc Challenge with the Sapphire Coast Club conducted at Helen Watson’s at Narooma on 9th and won by Eurobodalla. A big thank you to all who participated and to our hosts for providing a lovely facility for this event.

None of this last twelve months activity would have happened had it not been for a lively and alert membership keen to grow good orchids, have fun, promote the hobby and enjoy the whole experience. Your Committee has been top notch and extremely supportive of each other and has gone the extra yard on many occasions. We have an Orchid Club to be proud of - one that is well recognised throughout the orchid fraternity."

                                                                                                                     Tony Groube    EOC President


Eurobodalla Orchid Club - President Tony Groube's Report - 2014

Once again I have the pleasure of reporting on an outstanding year for the Club and I thank you the Members and the Committee for the various efforts that went towards the Club’s success over the last twelve months.

The ‘reporting year’ commenced with the post November 2013 AGM ‘orchids-only’ auction, a highly entertaining interlude at which a number of ‘treasures’ changed hands.

On 1 December 2013 we lost Member Ted Nelson – Ted was from Wagga Wagga and used his visits to his Mossy Point holiday home to catch up with EOC workshops, general meetings and shows.

The 2013 Christmas Party was another successful event, conducted at Paula and Michael Brown’s at Tuross Head. Good tucker and raffle hampers comprising traditional Christmas goodies and, the now traditional, orchid baskets.

Presidential Sausage Sizzle

2014 kicked off with Gordon Marion sharing his story of experimentation with various growing media at the February Meeting. The Presidential Sausage sizzle followed, and before we knew it the Annual Workshop was upon us.

The Workshop was held at the CWA Hall Moruya on 8&9 March and numbers had to be limited to 68. Speakers were David Wain, Dennis Diehm, Phil Grech and Neville Roper. I continue to receive positive feedback from afar.


Our Annual General Auction in April was well supported and netted the Club $437. In recognition of a number of new growers joining the Club, the first of our ad hoc ‘new growers’ workshops was held at Tom and Elaine Kelly’s.

The Sarc Workshop

The Club is fortunate in having a number of expert growers in its ranks, and in May Mitch Karnaghan was called upon to talk on Orchid Culture – a broad ranging topic which Mitch stripped down to simple components. There was a follow up session at the June meeting where problem plants and conditions were addressed. The Annual Orchid Crawl took us to Mitch Karnaghan’s collection; then on to Robert and Sue Fish’s Phallie ‘House’ before lunch at Garden Bay.

July saw the usual display at Moruya Markets to promote the forthcoming Shows. The Moruya District Hospital Auxiliary benefited by some $172 from raffle and plant sales at the display. The Winter Show was conducted at the CWA Hall Moruya, with benching numbers slightly down following poor cymbidium spike initiation due to earlier seasonal conditions. Bob and Muriel Bell took Grand Champion with their Masd. Harlequin x Drac. Vampire ‘Beenak.’


The Spring Show at Narooma was a larger event and on this occasion the Grand Championship went to another Masdevallia, Masd. macrura owned by Liz Cleaver and Tony Groube. Cymbidium numbers were again down on previous seasons.


Ted Beehag was guest speaker at our September Meeting and spoke on Lycastes. Jean Swindley hosted a New Growers’ Workshop examining the mounting and care of Dockrillias.

The Mogo Orchid and Fern Nursery Tri-Club Fun Day was conducted with Tom and Elaine Kelly taking the major trophy and Rod Thomas of the Milton-Ulladulla Club winning the Novice Award. September concluded with an ‘open day’ at Graham Jackson’s collection of native orchids. Graham Jackson spoke on how he developed an interest in Australian Native Orchids at the October general meeting.

The Mogo Orchid and Fern Nursery Tri-Club Fun Day

The Annual Sarc. Challenge with the Sapphire Coast Club was held on 8 November at the property of David and Barbara Jones at Kalaru. Whilst the EOC was walloped in the Challenge, everyone present was astounded at the extent and abundance of different genera in the extensive gardens – a marvelous setting.

I wish to put on record, the Club’s appreciation of assistance provided by a number of external persons and bodies. To our Sponsors Eddy and Karen Ruiz of Mogo Orchid and Fern Nursery a big thank you; to the Orchid Society of NSW Judges who give so generously of their time, not only to us, but to other Clubs a big thank you; to Mayor Lindsey Brown and his Council Staff thank you; to the local Press and Radio thank you; to our March Workshop Presenters thank you; and to the Members of the Moruya Branch of the Country Womens Association for their support in so many ways, a big thank you.

Once again, this Club has gone from strength to strength. I’m sorry to announce that Sue Carroll has found it necessary to stand down from her role as Newsletter Editor – her contribution over the last eight years is appreciated. Our Vice-President and Show Marshal and IT Systems Development Officer Jean Swindley maintains our ‘continuous improvement program’ with great success, and Treasurer Colin Pearson continues to provide timely and accurate accounting advice and financial analysis, as well as prudent business management. Secretary Diane Hay, not only excels at the Secretarial role, but has developed and maintained our outstanding website, the envy of many Clubs. She has been instrumental in the development and upkeep assistance of websites for our neighbouring Clubs at Batemans Bay and Milton-Ulladulla. Other Committee Members each have their roles and contribute majorly to the Club’s success, as does our general membership. There is never a shortage of volunteers to take on chores at General Meetings, Show time or other special events and your participation, harmony and contribution is appreciated. It’s this spirit, and the fact that we all enjoy growing and flowering orchids, that makes us the Club we are. Thank you all, so much!

 Tony Groube    EOC President 


Eurobodalla Orchid Club - President Tony Groube's Report - 2015

This has been another happy and successful year for the Club.

Our AGM in November 2014 not only returned a Committee which was able to build on previous years’ successes, but following that Meeting, the Orchids Only Auction saw $729 worth of Members’ orchids change hands in 45 minutes.

The Club prevailed upon Don and Margaret Hayes for the last time, I promised, to host the Club Christmas Party. It is an effort getting everything ready and shipshape, and Don and Margaret have done more than their bit over the years, and I thank them for that very much. Amongst the festivity of the occasion, we saw Gordon Marion presented with a Meritorious Service Award. Congratulations, again.

Our February 2015 General Meeting featured three of the Club’s renowned growers – Paula Brown on how she grows Sarcochilus; Don Hayes on how Margaret grows Paphiopedilums; and Peter Van Est on how he manages Masdevallias. The President’s Sausage Sizzle on 22 February attracted 27 Members and a Facebook Friend and was a jolly occasion, despite the refusal of the ‘Choc Top’ to set on the ice creams.

Peter Stubbs addressed our March Meeting and presented a slide show on the ‘Orchids I Like to Grow’ which featured many of the more than 300 Species he has in his collection.

The Annual March Workshop was organised by this Club for the third year in a row and was held at the Kyla Park Hall on 21 and 22 March 2015. A record 85 participants attended this event featuring Kevin Hipkins, Royale Orchids; Wally Rhodes, Camira Orchids; and Clive Halls, Mt Beenak Orchids. It was a marvellous effort by the Speakers and their ‘Minders’ and a top effort by the EOC Committee and Membership in organisation, registration, catering and generally hosting such a popular event. In addition, on the final afternoon, five of our Members opened their Tuross Head orchid houses to Workshop participants who were visitors to the area - a nice gesture and highly appreciated.

The Club’s Annual Auction Night was held in conjunction with the April Meeting and some $600 was raised for the Club’s coffers. Neville Roper had been invited to accept Honorary membership of the Club in response to his generosity over the years and he attended this Meeting to be ‘badged.’ It saw further donations from Neville and Roberta, of Sarcos and the odd PVC plant stand/hanger to the Raffle and Auction tables.

Jane Wright addressed our May Meeting, with a slide show, on the basics of orchid judging, so that growers might be able to think a bit like a judge and have more understanding of the process. On 16 May a number of Members attended a New Growers’ Workshop conducted by Gordon Marion.

The Annual June Orchid Crawl took us through the orchid houses of the Van Ests at Dalmeny and the Hayes at Narooma, via a popular coffee stop, and ending at a nearby hostelry for lunch.

At our June Meeting, Jeff Lee provided a run down, and ‘real time’ examples, of how he can manage and keep an eye on his orchids from a distance, using the various technologies available.

Our July Meeting was held prior to the Winter Show, with Liz Cleaver doing a last ditch tidy up of a Show hopeful and a ‘pot cleaning’ demonstration. We also conducted a publicity stall at Moruya Markets on the Saturday prior to the Show which resulted in more than $300 being raised and donated to the Moruya District Hospital Auxiliary.

The Winter Show at Moruya on 10 and 11 July saw more than 160 orchids benched, with Bob and Muriel Bell taking Grand Champion, and Peter and Laurina Van Est, Reserve Champion.
Mitch Karnaghan addressed the August Meeting – his theme was getting ready for Spring and the season’s effects on the culture of orchids. The Spring Show was held at Narooma on 21-23 August with some 210 orchids on display. The Show was visited by Jim and Thea Shaugnessy, President and Secretary of AOC. As with the Winter Show, Bob and Muriel Bell were triumphant, with Peter and Laurina Van Est, Reserve Champions.
On a sombre note, Dennis Diehm was to have judged at the Spring Show and had booked a sales table for Dendi Orchids. Dennis died on 6 August and our Club donated $100 to the Cancer Assistance Group, CANASSIST, as a Memorial Tribute. Neville Roper was welcomed as a replacement Judge, three days before clearing his own orchids at auction.

Our September Meeting featured Liz Cleaver, Gordon Marion and Graham Jackson demonstrating their ‘division skills’ on Cymbidiums, Cattleyas and Speciosums.

The Mogo Orchid and Fern Nursery Tri-Club Fun day was held on 21 September and this resulted in Gordon Marion winning the Open Trophy and Helen Marshall, the Novice. Members from Eurobodalla, the Bay and Milton/Ulladulla Clubs attended, and a big thank you is extended to Eddy and Karen Ruiz for hosting this event and for their continuing and generous sponsorship of this Club.

The South and West Regional Conference was hosted by the Batemans Bay Club on 3 and 4 October with Eurobodalla placed third in the Displays Competition. Over five hundred orchids were displayed.

At our October Meeting we deflasked Sarcos given by Neville Roper earlier in the year, and we spent some time on a slide show on Orchid Fleck Virus and general discussion on Orchid Viruses, and their recognition. Our Website and Facebook page were demonstrated.

On 7 November we hosted the Annual Sarc Challenge against the Sapphire Coast Club and more than three hundred Sarcos were displayed at Kyla Park Hall, Tuross Head. EOC just pipped Sapphire 209 points to 201. It was my duty to advise all present of Neville Roper’s demise on the previous day, and to relay Roberta’s wish that Neville be remembered for his orchid achievements, rather than for his death.

Greater detail of our 2015 activities is provided on the Club’s Website, and I thank Diane Hay for this. I thank a great Committee for doing their jobs, and beyond. A great and cohesive membership, I thank you too, many hands DO make light work. The Club is financially strong with one of the larger memberships of any New South Wales Club, outside one or two in Sydney.

Thank you all - may you, your orchids and enjoyment of them, thrive.

Tony Groube – 11 November 2015