President's Report to NOCI AGM Feb 2010

by Doris Ames

It's wonderful to see so many of you out tonight.  I would like to especially welcome new members and guests.  As usual we will have the business meeting and elections followed by a wonderful slide show, refreshments and socializing. 

Before I give my report on 2009 activities I have a few announcements to make:

The Manitoba Orchid Society's Orchid Show will take place March 26 to 28 at Assiniboine Park Conservatory.  The theme is Orchid Paradise.  We hope to have a display there as usual and I have a sign-up sheet at the back of the room for anyone who would like to volunteer for a shift at our display during the show.  It is a very pleasant venue, one is surrounded by beautiful orchids and displays and interesting flower people when working there, and I urge you to come along and help us with it. 

As you know there will be elections to the NOCI board tonight and some outstanding people have agreed to let their names stand for election to the board.  This makes me very happy and hopeful for NOCI's future but it's also kind of sad because it usually means that some of the directors will not be running again and we will miss working closely with them. 

This year Richard Reeves and Huguette Calvez will step down from the NOCI board. 

Huguette has been our secretary and is in charge of online sales.  She is ever vivacious, and is enthusiastic about certain aspects of fieldtrips like finding the elusive club mosses and is very good at sales and promotion.  It was always such a treat to have the board meeting at Huguette's place.  Her wonderful hospitality, coffee and baking will be especially hard to forget.  She always helps out at meetings, with membership, with sales, hospitality, etc and I hope we will continue to see her out to future meeting even if she is no longer a board member.  Thank you very much for all your help Huguette and would you please come up and accept this little present on behalf of the NOCI Board?  Please join me in thanking Huguette Calvez. 

Richard has been with us for more than 10 years as a director and has held the position of treasurer as well as at different times, webmaster, newsletter chair, and fieldtrip leader.  He did the layout for our book "Orchids of Manitoba" and worked on calendar productions.  Richard is very likeable, has enormous field experience, excellent teaching skills, and is very popular with the our membership.  He helped with plant surveys and took wonderful photographs and was always willing to assist with whatever needed doing.  He has agreed to continue to help us with fieldtrips and the newsletter for now and I am very grateful to him for that as well as for all his help and support to me over the years.  I would like to present him with a small gift and to thank him on behalf of the board members.  Richard would you please come up?  Please join me in thanking Richard Reeves. 

I will now give a brief review of our activities in 2009.  We carried on with our Seedbank project and did Rare plant surveys for the Manitoba Model Forest again this year.  I would like to thank them very much for supporting our conservation work.  We took 141 people out on fieldtrips this year and talked to hundreds more about orchid conservation and biodiversity at our displays.  This kind of public education is bound to have a positive effect on the environment.  We plan to do more of the same in 2010 and have already begun.  Peggy and I will also give out seedling trees to people at Polo Park on May 15th to help offset the carbon emisions from our survey work and fieldtrips. 

Now I will tell you about some of our activities in 2009:

Jan 20 - Eugene and Doris gave a slide presentation on Manitoba orchids to the Selkirk Horticultural Society. 

Feb 27 - Annual general meeting. 

Mar 9th - survey trip to Oak Hammock, Eugene and Doris checked out snow levels and Snowy Owls. 

Mar 18 - photo clinic Bill Bremner

Mar 26-29 - Manitoba Orchid Society Orchid Show - NOCI's display won first prize for educational display on the theme "tropical treasures". 

Apr 13 - Eugene and Doris checked out crocus at Bird's Hill.  It was very cold - no crocus or buttercup plants in sight. 

April 25 - John Dyck, Doris Ames, Eugene Reimer and Will Milne survey trip to Portage Sandhills.  Even though it snowed and was cold we saw lots of plants coming up in the sandhills along with pelicans, heron and spawning fish near the spillway and the Whitemud River. 

April 27 - Richard and Doris mailed out newsletter with 2009 fieldtrips listed. 

May 7 - Eugene, Doris and Ed Zalusky made a survey trip to Lauder and Routledge Sandhills - Low Townsendia in bloom. 

May 9 - NOCI display Gardening Saturday at C M U. 

May 12 - Richard and Doris and Ed Zalusky - survey trip to Lauder Sandhills - Golden Bean in bloom. 

May 16 - fieldtrip to Steep Rock - saw crocus in the snow and mating garter snakes among other things. 

May 23 - fieldtrip Bird's Hill - a dozen or more spring flowers in bloom. 

May 25 - Eugene, Doris and Ed Banville - survey trip South Junction re bloodroot. 

June 2 - Richard took group Creative Retirement on fieldtrip to Brokenhead Wetlands

June 4 - Eugene and Doris survey trip to orchid site at Contour - check out orchid growth and found it virtually non-existent after tornado damage and the clear-cut. 

June 12 - Richard and Doris survey trip Mt.Nebo

June 13 - Mt.Nebo fieldtrip and survey trip Eugene, Peg, Doris, Rich - Pembina Valley Prov Park

June 16 - Eugene and Doris met Tim Swanson and Jack Kowalchuk at Contour re possible plan for site now trees cut and orchid habitat severely damaged then caried on to Hadashville to check out bloodroot etc. 

June 20 - John Neufeld and Eugene Reimer - fieldtrip Woodridge

June 27 - fieldtrip Brokenhead Wetlands - PBA

June 28 - Richard took group from Selkirk Hort Society to Brokenhead Wetlands fieldtrip

June 29-July 1 - Eugene and Doris-survey trip rare plants in Nopiming for Manitoba Model Forest - heavy rain

July 2 - John Dyck and Doris survey trip Portage Sandhills

July 4 - fieldtrip Portage Sandhills

July 13 - Richard, Doris and Eugene - survey trip Bird's Hill re hackberry tree and Showy ladyslippers at folk festival stage area to be expanded

July 27 - Eugene and Doris survey trip Lauder Sandhills - Green flowered milkweed, skeletonweed, Hairy prairie clover blooming then. 

July 29-30 - Eugene and Doris - survey trip Nopiming - seed capsules Hooker orchids, Platanthera etc.  There was high water levels in the park, perhaps 3' higher than usual this year. 

Aug 8 - TGPP Prairie Days - some NOCI members attended 10th anniversary and supper at Gardenton. 

Aug 27 - casual fieldtrip Broad leaved helleborine along Seine River and later cruise on Paddlewheel Queen on Red and Assiniboine Rivers. 

Sept 10 and 11 - Eugene and Doris survey trip Cowan Bog near Swan River

Sept 13 - Eugene and Doris - mushroom hunt with Nature Manitoba Dr.Punter

Sept 17 - Eugene and Doris - survey trip Jackhead and Fisher River. 

Sept 23 - Peggy and Eugene - display for students U of Winnipeg

Oct 18 - casual fieldtrip Altona and Alt Bergthal

October 23 - Members Night

Oct 31 - casual fieldtrip Bird's Hill

Nov 13 - survey trip St.Vital Park E.helleborine seed capsules

Nov 19 - sent seed capsules from 18 species of native orchids to Plant gene lab Saskatoon

Any questions on our 2009 activities? 

Be sure to buy raffle tickets - some excellent prizes - all proceeds towards NOCI conservation work and pick up a wildflower pin or orchid book for yourself or a friend.  Be sure to stay for refreshments because we are having delicious Double D's cheesecake and fruit.