South Coast Orchid Society

Orchid Judging in Long Beach, 1954 and Beyond!

Orchid Digest Corporation Judging
at Long Beach,
December, 1954 to December, 1967:

Award Photos

Of the 528 known awards from this period, we have recovered color photos of only a few. Nevertheless, they are impressive! We present the photos together with their award information that has been recovered from our newsletters and from Orchid Digest. Also, AOS judge Tim Culbertson kindly loaned us a rare volume, ODC Awards List: Volume I, listing Orchid Digest awards from October 1952 through December 1964. Unfortunately, no additional volumes were published, as far as we know, and there are other issues with this list. The ODC awards list does not give exact award dates (only month and year), and the venue is not specified. However, there were only seven ODC judging sites during the period 1952-1964, and many of the reports from ODC judging were published in Orchid Digest, so that it is possible in some cases to identify the judging site for some groups of awards.

One oddity of the Orchid Digest awards is that some of the judging sites performed ODC and AOS judging on the same plants, with the same set of judges, accredited by both organizations, and at the same session, and with the same photographer. As a result, it appears there are at least some ODC awards where the award photo has survived as an AOS award photo, and was published both in Orchid Digest and in the AOS Bulletin or the AOS awards database. While this was not the case at Long Beach, the duplication of awards provides additional ways to verify some award information (in particular, assigning ODC awards to specific venues amd exact dates) and award photos. There may also be some instances where CSA judging took place at the same time as ODC or AOS judging, or else so close in time that we can be sure the CSA award photos show the same flowers that were judged by ODC and/or AOS.

A few additional sources have been discovered. There are a few photos in the ODC Awards List, some of which are Long Beach award photos, although they seem to be photos that had already been published in Orchid Digest. Also, the Frank Fordyce slide collection, part of the "Orchid Archive" at the Huntington Botanical Center, contains some slides that cite SCOS awards, mostly from plants exhibited by Albert R. Stephenson, from whom Frank Fordyce purchased the property, including Stephenson's orchid collection, about 1962, as the site of his new nursery. The Kay Francis archive, donated to SCOS, has about a dozen SCOS award slides. Other archival slide collections will likely turn out to contain additional award slides.

Rlc. Mellowglow ‘Linda Vista’ HCC/ODC, February 27, 1961

309  Blc. Mellowglow ‘Linda Vista’ (Blc. Golden Myth x Blc. Prince Smilax), HCC/ODC 75.8 points, Mrs. K. Francis, February 27, 1961. [Now Rlc. Mellowglow. Mrs. Francis is the famous creator of several big splash-petaled Cattleyas. This cultivar received AM/AOS at the Southland Orchid Show, Costa Mesa, CA, March 2, 1965, when exhibited by Mr. and Mrs. Fred Francis of Pasadena, CA. The photo turned up in AOS Bulletin 54(7):829 (July, 1985), citing the HCC/ODC award and the exhibitor.]

Cattleya mossiae 'Bienvenido' HCC/ODC, March 27, 1961

315  C. mossiae ‘Bienvenido’ (species), HCC/ODC 75.5 points, Mr. Harry Rapella, 13518 Yukon St., Hawthorne, Calif., March 27, 1961. [OrchidWiz image #55873 from Steve McNerney, described as Cattleya mossiae ‘Bienvenido’ HCC/AOS, is apparently from this award. As AOS has no record of an award for this cultivar, we believe this is in fact the HCC/ODC award photo! Harry Rapella was famous for his work with Cattleya mossiae. We understand he may have raised as many as seven generations of carefully selected plants, some of which are rumored still to exist in collections. We would love to know more!]

Cattleya Califlora 'Hawthorne' CCM/ODC, May 25, 1964.

426  C. Califlora ‘Hawthorne’ (mossiae × J. A. Carbone, CCM/ODC 80.0 points, Harry Rapella, May 25, 1964. 10 flowers on 2 spikes, 7” natural spread. Clear, rose-pink sepals and petals. Large, frilled lip, with yellow, orange and lavender veining in throat. [This same plant had received AM/AOS two weeks earlier, May 11, 1964, at the usual OSSC meeting in Hollywood, CA, exhibited by Harry Rapella of Hawthorne, CA. OrchidWiz has what appears to be an award photo for this cultivar, although the grower is not named and the registration date for the hybrid is listed in error as 1984, image #55661, from Steve McNerney, the picture consistent with this plant as exhibited at OSSC, as we think we can see 10 dorsal sepals. Of the known AOS awards for C. Califlora, this is the only one with this flower count; the others either had 2-4 flowers or 35 or more flowers.]

Rlc. Fortune 'Golden Fantasy' HCC/ODC, July 26, 1965.

460  Blc. Fortune ‘Golden Fantasy’ (Lc. Mem. Albert Heinecke ‘Fort Sutter’ × Blc. Xanthette ‘Chartreuse’), HCC/ODC 77.5 points, Fred A. Stewart, Inc., July 26, 1965. [Now Rlc. Fortune. OrchidWiz image #55274, from Steve McNerney, shows what is apparently an award photo for this cultivar, the grower not identified. As this cultivar did not receive any AOS awards, and does not seem to match any of the AOS award descriptions that are not already accompanied by a photo, we believe this image is the award photo for this HCC/ODC.]

Rlc. Acapana 'Teresa' HCC/ODC, June 27, 1966.

482  Blc. Acapana ‘Teresa’ (Lc. Grandee × Blc. Greenheart), [HCC/ODC] 76.0 points, Lois Werner, June 27, 1966. [Now Rlc. Acapana. Correct parentage is now C. Grandee (1937) × Rlc. Green-heart. OrchidWiz image #55156 shows apparently this cultivar (but as ‘Theresa’), conceivably an award photo (but the background is pale gray, rather than the usual black), lacking the name of the grower and other details. As no other awards are known for this cultivar, we believe the image is probably the HCC/ODC award photo.]

Rlc. Memoria Crispin Rosales 'Linda Vista' HCC/ODC, September 26, 1966.

[493]  Blc. Mem. Crispin Rosales ‘Linda Vista’ (Lc. Bonanza ‘Case Card’ x Blc. Norman’s Bay), HCC/ODC 76.2 points, Mr. & Mrs. Fred Frances (name should be Francis). No award number was listed in the SCOS newsletter. [Now Rlc. Memoria Crispin Rosales. Exhibitors are Fred and Kay Francis of Pasadena; Kay is famous for developing a number of outstanding slash-petaled Cattleyas. The award slide, clearly numbered 493, has turned up in materials donated by the family of Kay Francis.]