Past President Don Ghiz to Speak at May 4 Meeting

Don will talk about the evolution of judging orchids.

At our May meeting (on Thursday, May 4), Don Ghiz will speak to the Houston Orchid Society about how orchid judging has evolved over his 15 years of judging experience with the American Orchid Society. AOS judging began in the 1930s, and the Houston Judging Center has operated since 1988.

Don was born and raised in Massachusetts and graduated from MIT as a chemical engineer in 1964. He then moved around the country and traveled the world with Conoco.

Don finally got to Houston in 1975 where he discovered his love for orchids (all Jay Balchan’s fault… or maybe Greg Scott’s fault?). One of his first orchids came from Orchids and Ferns in the 1990s (then on Bellaire Blvd.) where he bought a green Cattleya he later name after his mother, Blc. Adeline Ghiz. Somehow, Gene Hausermann heard about it and negotiated a cloning partnership with Don…and it was on!

In 2002, Don joined the Houston Orchid Society and has since served as President twice, VP of Speakers, and has been on the Board continuously since 2004. Don has also been an accredited orchid judge since 2008 with the Houston Judging Center.

His “special” loves are Cattleyas and Dendrobiums, but his collection includes many other genera. In 2015, he moved to his new home and new 1,800-square-foot greenhouse in west Houston and stays busy with a landscaped acre, his greenhouse, and an enormous saltwater fish aquarium.