Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Newly Moved... and A Great Talk

Well, I've moved again... now I live in Leytonstone, east London. More on my new place to come, and how I've coped with no windowsills (agh!).

I discovered that my local BCSS (that's british cactus and succulent society) is somewhere in the middle of nowhere that I can't get to by public transport. However, the adjacent BCSS meets up in Ilford, which isn't too far up the road. And, much to my delight, they were giving a talk on Asclepiadaceae family, which of course contains my much beloved Hoyas. Since my engleriana was in flower, I thought I would take it along to put on the table contest. When I arrived, however, I discovered that, similar to the Bristol cactus and succulent society, their table competition no longer existed (probably due to low numbers/people unwilling to cart their plants around) however, i was able to display mine along with a couple the speaker had brought along with him, including this rather beautiful Hoya cinnamomifolia:
The talk was given by Vernon Read, who's obviously been growing stapelias and related bizarre plants (sorry, I'm sure they have a certain charm but to me not only are they ugly, but their flowers stink of rotten meat. Yeugh!) along with hoyas for some time. I'm afraid I probably interrupted most but I wanted to ask questions! Vernon was a really interesting guy who gave us loads of information about the stapelias and where they all came from etc. In the break we had a cup of tea and I chatted to Vernon about my collection and Hoyas (apparently there is a national collection somewhere - must go visit it at some point!). There was a raffle competition, in which a Hoya cinamomifolia was a prize, and guess who won to pick first. Hmmm. Was it me? I wonder if that was fixed at all?!?
The second part of the talk got to Hoyas at the end and I got to see loads of photos, including some native shots of Hoyas in Singapore, which was really interesting. All in all it was a fab night for me seeing and talking about my favourite plants. Now I want to go back to Kew Gardens again!