South Coast Orchid Society

2018 Annual Auction

Update — October 23, 2018: WE DID IT! Thanks to the dedication of about 15-20 members who showed up early, we managed to get everything set up, all the plants checked in and staged, and the auction started ON TIME! About 35-40 people attended, and kept bidding until 9:30.

The few remaining plants will show up for our monthly silent auction and plant raffle at future meetings. Enough people stayed late so that we were able to tidy up the meeting room and put everything back where it belonged shortly after 10. The web master took some pictures, and now can tidy up the web site and our Facebook page and prepare for our next event. Please enjoy our smartphone pictures! You can contribute your own pictures too, so that everyone can enjoy them. We always need pictures for our publicity and outreach efforts.

We were only allowed to put up a sign at Whaley Park on the day of the auction. Apparently it worked!

It wasn't long before controlled chaos reigned. Most of the plants had been registered and numbered in advance, but it wasn't long before additional plants began arriving and threatened to overwhelm the front table, while the other tables were being set up. Mong, Glenda, Andy, and probably others (it was all a blur at that point) took turns checking in the plants. Lynn, Earl, Glenda, Russ, and others (another blur) staged the plants. John and Janell were everywhere.

At our meetings, orchids seem to be mobile. Look away, and the plant has suddenly moved across the room. Eventually, the little yellow Paphiopedilum was re-found, all the other plants were rounded up, and people were able to study them before the bidding began.

Auctioneer Doug Overstreet put on a great show, providing just enough information about plants while maintaining a fast pace. Bidding continued until 9:30, by which time the great majority of the plants had been sold.

With many hands, clean-up didn't take long, even considering that everyone had to carry their orchids to their cars and then return to deal with tables, chairs, boxes, and all the rest of the STUFF associated with the auction.

A big THANK YOU to everybody who helped make this event a success, and to the bidders who were so generous in supporting (1) our society and (2) their orchid addiction!

Update — October 22, 2018: The auction is tonight! Our orchid roadies are still hard at work with final arrangements. They have driven all over Southern California to round up plants for the auction. We are so grateful for the support of all the orchid growers in our area to make this event a success! Here is a load of plants from Sunset Valley Orchids and Casa de las Orquideas. One of them involves the obscure intergeneric Fisherara, which turns out to be Neogardneria x Pabstia x Promenaea x Zygopetalum. There are some equally complicated Catasetum hybrids in this group, too. Excellent plants, and fragrant besides!

Preliminary Plant List: As of this morning, we have over 180 items for the auction. More will probably be added at the last minute. The LIST is in PDF format, so everyone should be able to view it. Plant descriptions are highly abbreviated and may not show complete parentage or other details, but this should be enough information to help you identify plants that you want to examine before the auction. Plants should be ready for viewing about 6 PM, the auction itself will start promptly at 6:30 PM.

The annual auction is our main fundraising activity for the year. We depend on the proceeds from the auction to pay for the featured speakers at our meetings and for rent for the meeting hall and judging center. Plants donated by individuals and vendors are offered at a public auction during our October meeting. See the list of vendors from 2017; the list for 2018 will be similar. There are usually several hundred plants, most of them suitable for growing outdoors in our area. There are blooming plants, divisions of plants that are hard to find commercially, seedlings of new hybrids, and strange and wonderful species orchids.

Let the auction begin!

The auction will start PROMPTLY at 6:30 pm on Monday, October, 22, 2018 at our usual meeting place, Whaley Park Community Center, 5620 Atherton St., in Long Beach, California. This is an hour earlier than our normal meeting time — don't be late! Doors open at 5:00 pm for set-up, receiving and checking in plants, etc. Please try to arrive by 6 pm so that you will have time to register as a bidder and examine the plants beforehand. The auction should conclude around 9 pm.

We can accept payment by cash, personal check, or credit card.

If you have orchid plants to donate for the auction, please make sure they are clean (both plant and pot!), healthy, well-groomed, and properly labeled. Please contact the auction coordinator as soon as possible to arrange for your donation!

Plants lined up for 2017 auction

SCOS relies on a large number of volunteers to put on this ambitious event. Tasks include setup of the meeting room, clean-up after the event, checking in plants before the auction, helping the auctioneer, registering bidders, recording sales, receiving payment, refreshments, and generally keeping everything on course. Volunteer if you can! Doors open at 5:00 pm.

If time permits, we may be able to post a preliminary plant list HERE. Watch this space!

The more people who attend, the more successful our auction will be. Please spread the word to EVERYONE you know who may be interested in orchids!

Elaine and Espie got to visit this greenhouse
when they picked up a donation at Westerlay Orchids in Carpinteria

Please contact the auction coordinator if you need additional information!