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World Bromeliad Conference 2018, San Diego--Part 2.

After a beautiful morning perusing the bromeliads at the show, we headed to die buses for our first garden tour. Our destination was San Diego's North County, home to some of die best gardens in town. First visited was Dan Kinnard and Eloise Lau's home in Yista. The couple's house boasts unique organic architecture by James Hubbell and first-class art by die homeowners (Fig 34), all of which are worth the trek even for non-bromeliophyles. On arrival, a spread of Dan's yummy baked goodies was a treat one could not pass by (Fig. 35). In die garden, hardy terrestrials like Puya, Hechtia and Dyckia grow on die hillsides among fruit trees, while a spacious shadehouse hosts the more tender plants. Dan and Eloise have a beautiful all-around bromeliad collection, but I specially admire their billbergias.

Next stop is the home of Robert Kopfstein right next door. A SDBS past president, Kopfstein is also a busy docent in the San Diego Botanic Garden, where he works with bromeliads, palms and cycads. He has an extensive collection of drought tolerant bromeliads in die landscape - along with a few surprises (Fig. 36)--and a shadehouse filled with exotic bromeliad species.

We ended die day at die San Diego Botanic Garden, where we toured die grounds and enjoyed a Mexican dinner reception on-site, hosted by SDBS and Hospitality Chair Stephen Zolezzi. Fig 38, 39

On Friday, June 1 the sale opened to the general public. A feature article in the San Diego Union Tribune the week before helped bring in a good crowd, and some people at the sale were actually buying bromeliads for the first time in their life.

It was also the first day of lectures. The WBC 2018 team of speakers represented New Zealand, China, Mexico, Ecuador and the United States, in true international fashion. It's good to know that there's interest in bromeliads all over the world! The conference covered a variety of topics, from horticulture to plant science and bromeliads in habitat.

Peter Waters (Fig. 37, top left), a BSI honorary trustee who's been promoting bromeliad horticulture for decades, delivered an in-depth historical account of the bromeliad scene in New Zealand. The passion that the kiwis devote to gardening is remarkable. Waters drew an interesting parallel between their climate and that of Southern California, both good for growing bromeliads. With their flourishing bromeliad clubs, whimsical gardens and fabulous bromeliad hybrids, New Zealanders are true bromeliad lovers.

Next up was Jeffrey Kent (Fig. 37, bottom right), co-owner of Kent's Bromeliads in Yista, California. Kent is one of the big players in die commercial market, specializing in Guzmania. The hybridizer and plant explorer took us on a visual journey to die Colombian Amazon, to search for new and interesting Guzmania species that will be used to create die hybrids in stores tomorrow. Jeffrey takes hybridizing to die next level, as he goes the extra mile to find die best possible clones of wild species to use in his breeding programs.

Paul Isley (Fig. 37, bottom center), of Rainforest Flora in Torrance, California was die next speaker. Isley is widely known as an expert grower and hybridizer of Tillandsia and wrote two beautiful books on the subject. He delivered a poignant account of the wildfire that ravaged his nursery in the fall of 2017 and die reconstruction under way.

Jose Manzanares (Fig. 37, top right), a long-time resident of Ecuador has published numerous studies on the ultra-rich bromeliad flora of his adopted country. He is die author of die comprehensive B omeliaceae of Ecuador Jewels of the Jungle, a 3-part series detailing the diversity of Ecuadorean species. The volumes on Bromelioideae and Pitcairnioideae have been published, with Tillandsioideae still to come. Manzanares spoke on the recent taxonomic revision of die Tillandsioideae. The lecture covered die phylogenetic and morphological studies that made the sub-family grow from 9 to 21 accepted genera. He was able to translate some heavy academic material to layman language, all with a touch of humor and clever analogies like the sequence of the growing family in die snapshot. Fig 38

The day ended with die rare plant auction. Offerings included Tillandsia hildae and a giant T. tectomm donated by Davis Wholesale Tillandsia. Also in die auction, a painting by Mulford Foster and an antique book with handmade botanical illustrations of bromeliads, donations of Larry Kent. Fig 39

Saturday, June 2 started with lectures early in die morning, but our first speaker quickly energized die crowd. Dr. Ivon Ramirez Morillo (Fig. 37, bottom row, left)from Centro de Educacion Cientifica de Yucatan in Merida has conducted research for years on members of the genus Hechtia and published many scientific papers on the members of tins genus. Most species of Hechtia are found only in Mexico, but one species grows in Texas along die Mexican border and anodier handful of species are found in die countries just south of Mexico. Hechtia species are often quite difficult to study in die field. The spiny plants are frequently found growing on vertical rock faces in remote locations. To make things harder die plants are either male or female and the inflorescences on die two kinds of plants look very different. In fact, male and female plants of die same species were often described originally as different species. Also, flowering in natural populations occurs very brief window of time. Visit an important site a week too early or a week too late, and you have wait for another chance in following years. This prompted Ramirez to grow her own collection of hechtias so she could study diem throughout their life cycles. We learned about die evolutionary forces that shaped how hechtias spread through Mega Mexico. The shots of her husband clambering on cliffs to study die plants were priceless.

Li Ping (Fig. 37, middle row, right), the chief horticulturalist of the Shanghai Chenshan Botanical Garden was up next. Everyone was curious to hear about the growing popularity of bromeliads in China. The monumental 207-hectare garden (almost twice the size of Kew Gardens and a whopping 5 times larger than die San Diego Botanic Garden) is relatively new and houses a growing bromeliad collection. She introduced die talk with an interesting account of the history of cultivation of bromeliads in China, that started with die pineapple. Then we were taken on a visual tour of die Shanghai Chenshan. The collection of bromeliads occupies a number of greenhouses. The highlight of die presentation was die spectacular, Buckmaster Fuller-inspired conservatory, where bromeliads are in exhibition. It was fascinating to see the Pam Hyatt (Fig. 37, middle row, left) founder of Birdrock Tropicals, San Diego once again delighted us with her breadth of knowledge of the genus Tillandsia. She showed magnificent pictures of the Tillandsia species seen on her recent ecotour of Oaxaca and Chiapas, and how that translates into her hybridizing. In many years of field observation and tillandsia growing, Hyatt developed a critical eye for mixing and matching different plants to maximum wow effect. She went on to present her hybrid-making process and showed all stages of plant production from seed growing in her own nursery to meristem mass production in commercial operations.

After a quick lunch, it's time for the Urban Gardens Trolley Tour (Figs. 42, 43). Scott Sandel's historic Craftsman home in picturesque Mission Hills is first. Everyone was taking pictures of his flowering Pnya coemlea right by the front yard (Fig. 44). The backyard is a subtropical oasis with many interesting nooks and crannies. It proves that a landscape doesn't need to have acreage to make an impact. The garden is framed by hardy tropicals in different heights, and well-appointed hardscape. There are two different sitting areas and a firepit. A koi pond adds grace and generates moisture. Bromeliads adds pops of color everywhere, and Scott has many nice alcantareas and vrieseas. A small shade structure in die back is a jewelry shop full of collectible bromeliads. (Fig. 46)

On to Jim Bishop's garden. Due to street configuration, the Trolly had to park down die hill from the house and die tour members hiked up through die neighborhood (Fig. 47). Bishop is a former president of the San Diego Horticultural Society and a consummate gardener. The front yard shows his love for all plants, bromeliads included (Fig. 48). This landscape is enjoyed by all, including members of the younger generation (Fig. 49). His courtyard garden is an eclectic, very personal mix of succulents, cacti, flowers and bromeliads, lots of pottery and Mexican tiles, and it all works because of his great eye. The second portion is on a very steep slope with a footpath -1 person wide in most places. The footpath was carved in and built out from die side of die slope, and slightly wider, more level terraces provided a spot to The pathways are finished with a mosaic of pebbles and botties, the look and feel of a mini Park Guell (Fig. 52). The topography forces you to slow down, sit down, smell the flowers, with a happy surprise at the end.

The conference closed with a banquet in die ballroom, followed by die closing ceremonies. (Fig. 53). First came die announcement that Ed Doherty had been elected to die lifetime position of Honorary Trustee by die BSI board in 2018 in recognition of his many years of service to the BSI, including 10? years service as Treasurer, and his continuing support to promote the aims of die BSI. He was also responsible for die speakers whose presentations were such an important part of this Conference. President Lyn Wegner presented him with a plaque commemoratnig his appointment (Fig. 54). Don Beadle was also elected to the position Honorary Trustee during 2018, but was unable to attend the WBC in San Diego. Unfortunately, he passed away later in die year. A more detailed summary of die reason each of these two men were elected as Honorary Trustes can be found in die article by Lyn elsewhere in this issue.

Dr. Terrie Bert, Curator of die Wally Berg Award of Excellence, announced that the 2020 winner was Eric Gouda, curator of die Utrecht University Botanic Gardens in die Netherlands. Dr. Gouda does research in Botany, especially on Bromeliaceae. He is the creator of the online 'Encyclopedia of Bromeliads', a continuously updated compilation of data on Bromeliaceae, including descriptions, distribution maps and identification keys. He has also been a major contributer to die Journal of the Bromeliad Society over die past 5 years, providing both scientific articles dealing with bromeliad taxonomy and articles of general interest on growing bromeliads and exploring for bromeliads in their native lands. His name was added to the plaque given to each award winner in turn. Eric was unable to attend this WBC so Peter Bak accepted die award in his absence and delivered die plaque to Eric.

Dennis Cadicart of Tropiflora was die grand-finale of die WBC. He spoke of his personal life story, a journey interconnected with bromeliads. And what a life it has been! A film-worthy narrative starting as a nature loving kid in die Everglades, then a young castaway in die Florida Keys and an explorer wherever bromeliads grow. He told a series of stories of his plant adventures with wife Linda, the friends made along die way, die challenges of supplying many metric tons of bromeliads to die newly built Singapore Gardens by die Bay. Even after a lifetime in the nursery business, Cathcart retains a raw endiusiasm for die natural world that is truly inspirational. Full of charisma and great storytelling, he is die worldwide ambassador for bromeliads. We go home to our gardens carrying a little bit more beauty with us. In a way, growing our favorite plants connects us with the far-away jungles where they came from.

One of die great pleasures of attending World Bromeliad Conferences on a regular-basis is the opportunity to reconnect with people, often from distant lands, who you only see at die conferences. Another is die opportunity to make new friends outside of your local group who share a common interest in growing bromeliads--as these photos from the closing banquet illustrate. Then--after die final meals have been eaten and die final speeches have been made--it is time for die long-distance travelers to pack for die trip home and say their goodbyes. Although these separations may be an occasion for sadness, we all know that another meeting will be coming soon with die World Bromeliad Conference in 2020.

Caption: Figure 34. Mosaics by Eloise Lau, including this example, can be seen in different areas of the garden. Photo by True Grant.

Caption: Figure 35. North County Garden Tour. At the Kinnard/ Lau home, irresistible treats by Dan, a gifted baker, were featured. Photo by Dan Kinnard.

Caption: Figure 36. An artistic detail found among the plantings of the Kopfstein garden. Photo by True Grant.

Caption: Figure 37. WBC Speakers. From the top left, Peter Waters, Dennis Cathcart, Jose Manzanares, Pam Hyatt, Li Ping, Ivon Ramirez, Paul Isley, Jeffrey Kent. Photos by Li Ping and Xiang Li.

Caption: Figure 38. Jose Manzanares lecture: This was certainly an amusing way to explain the taxonomic revision of the Tillandsioideae sub-family. Photo by Juliana Raposo.

Caption: Figure 39. This book, donated by Larry Kent, was a highlight of the rare plant auction. Photo by Juliana Raposo.

Caption: Figure 40 (43). Deuterochonia collection at Shanghai Chenshan Botanical Gardens. Photo by Li Ping

Caption: Figure 41 (44). Neoregelia collection, Shanghai Chenshan Botanical Cardens. Photo by Li Ping.

Caption: Figure 42 (45). Boarding the trolley for the Saturday urban garden tour. Photo byjuliana Raposo.

Caption: Figure 4. Urban Carden Trolley Tour crew ready to go. Photo byjuliana Raposo.

Caption: Figure 44. At Scott Sandels garden, this magnificent blooming Puya cerulea grows by the sidewalk. Photo by Juliana Raposo, scale of this project. Who will forget the photo of Li flanked by giant Alcantareas in bloom? (Figs. 40 and 41)

Caption: Figure 45. An interesting vignette featuring Dyckia in Scott Sandels front yard. Photo by Scott Sandel.

Caption: Figure 46. A group on the Urban Gardens Trolly Tour inspecting the bromeliads grown under shade in Scott Sandels collection. Photo by Scott Sandel.

Caption: Figure 47. Walking to the Bishop house--the next garden stop of the Urban Gardens Trolly Tour in Mission Hills. Photo by Juliana Raposo.

Caption: Figure 48. The front yard at Jim Bishop's garden is a lovely mix of palms, flowers, succulents--and bromeliads! Photo by Juliana Raposo.

Caption: Figure 49. The cutest bromeliad family on the garden tour. Photo byjuliana Raposo.

Caption: Figure 50. Pam Peters and Eloise Lau looking good in Jim Bishop's garden. Photo byjuliana Raposo.

Caption: Figure 51. Nancy Groves in the courtyard garden at Bishop's. Photo by Juliana Raposo.

Caption: Figure 52. Detail of a large mosaic in Jim Bishop's garden. Photo byjuliana Raposo.

Caption: Figure 53. A scene from the Saturday Banquet: On stage, Scott Sandel gets ready to start the closing ceremonies. Photo by Li Ping.

Caption: Figure 54. BSI president Lyn Wagner presents a plaque to long-time BSI Treasurer and 2018 WBC Speakers Committee Chair, Ed Doherty announcing his election to the position of Honorary Trustee.

Caption: Figure 55. Dr. Terrie Bert announces the Wally Berg Award of Excellence for Eric Couda. Peter Bak receives the award on his behalf. Photo by Juliana Raposo.

Caption: Figure 56. Keynote speaker Dennis Cathcart ends the night with an autobiographical account of his life as a plant explorer and grower. Photo by Juliana Raposo.

Caption: Figure 57. Jim Marich, Scott Sandel and Bob Wright at Saturday banquet. Photo by Juliana Raposo.

Caption: Figure 58. Andrew Wilson, David and Joan Anderson. Photo by Juliana Raposo.

Caption: Figure 59. Pen Goff, Steve and Martha Coode, Paul Nakamura. Photo by Juliana Raposo.

Caption: Figure 60. David and Peggy Schneider, Steve Correale Jr.. Photo by Juliana Raposo.
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Title Annotation:GENERAL; California
Author:Raposo, Juliana
Publication:Journal of the Bromeliad Society
Article Type:Conference news
Geographic Code:1U9CA
Date:Oct 1, 2018
Words:2645
Previous Article:Eric J. Gouda, 2018 Recipient of the BSI's Wally Berg Award of Excellence.
Next Article:Events Calendar.
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