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Bcss0107.pdfBCSS Southampton & District Branch January 2007 Newsletter British Cactus & Succulent Society Branch Secretary Newsletter Editor
79 Shirley Avenue 29 Heathlands Road Shirley Southampton & District Branch
With Steve Hammer being the speaker at our Editorial . 1 March meeting, we are likely to attract a significant
Announcements. 1 number of visitors that evening. At the moment, the
Last Month’s Meeting - AGM . 1 plan is that branch members should use the regular
Snippets . 3 hall car park (off Hatherell Close) and visitors will
Is this the Slimming Secret of the Stars? .3 be asked to use the main church’s car park whose A new type of Pet .5 entrance is round the corner, on West End Road. Forthcoming Events. 5
Next Month’s Meeting . 5 Last Month’s Meeting - AGM
Our chairman Peter Down started off proceedings by welcoming the assembled members to the 52nd Welcome to another year! I hope everyone had a AGM. He mentioned that he had been at all the good time during the Christmas and New Year AGMs, except the first, when he was in the army. break. The weather has been unsettled but still quite mild – I was walking around on the morning of New Copies of the 2007 branch programme were Year’s eve without a coat and the sunshine and available from the front table, and Peter pointed out warm temperatures made it feel just like a pleasant that on March 6th, the speaker would be Steve day in the spring. Hammer, who is the world’s leading authority on Conophytums. On April 3rd, there will be no Little seems to have changed in my conservatory, meeting since our meeting hall is unavailable, the magenta-flowered Mammillaria has continued to having been booked for another event. However, a bloom, and the flower buds on Brophyllum tubiflora few days later, the branch will be involved at the continue to develop. The latter is around 3 feet tall, I Spring Garden Show at Broadlands. All of the gave up trying to keep it under control some time Committee’s reports were included in the December ago! Earlier in the year, I repotted Clivia caulescens newsletter, but in the usual tradition, some of the and moved it to a shadier spot, and it currently key officers discussed their reports at the meeting. shows no signs of wanting to form a flower spike; in previous years, it has always started to flower Peter mentioned that changing to our current around now. meeting hall was one of the best moves made by the branch. He went on to discuss the Spring Garden Announcements
Show at Romsey, including the prickly potting. The New Forest show was one of the highlights of the Branch Programme cards for 2007 are available year, with thousands of people seeing our display.
from the front table. The Zone 11 programme was We had a good selection of speakers at our also being finalised and copies of that should be meetings, with a wide coverage of cacti and succulents, and hopefully people also enjoy the social side of things at the monthly meetings, such By now, you should all have received the December as plant sales, the library, and the plants of interest.
Journal, along with the annual seed list and He offered his best wishes for a good growing year
membership renewal forms. The accompanying gift in 2007. aid form should be filled in and returned (if you haven’t already done so previously). The cost of David Corina spoke next in his role as secretary (he membership remains £15, with reduced fees for is also the branch’s vice-chairman). One of the best
OAPs and junior or associate members. If you have kept secrets of the year was the Robert Holt misplaced the membership form or are a new Meritorious Award for Ivor - three members of the member, then it is possible to pay the subscription branch were party to the nomination and had to keep on the BCSS website ( http://www.bcss.org.uk ) this to themselves for a while. Ivor’s help with the BCSS Southampton & District Branch January 2007 Newsletter seeds and cuttings at the Spring Garden show was OK to bring along any type of plant – it doesn’t much appreciated. Do keep bringing in seeds from necessarily have to be a cactus or a succulent. your plants, since we will need plenty for the coming year. The branch now has a membership of Peter thanked Bruce Beckerleg, the Plant Sales 70, and according to David Neville, over the last Officer. It is quite a job to take in the money and year we had attracted the second highest number of then at the end of the show, sort out all the labels new members (7) out of all the BCSS branches in and calculate what is due to each seller. The branch the country. We get about 30 members attending takes a small commission on plant sales, and if you each meeting, and a Christmas mail-out is sent to have good clean plants which are surplus to members affiliated with the branch but who can’t requirements, do bring them along to sell. attend our meetings. Our publicity officer Jim Roskilly wasn’t at the Looking forward to the coming year, at the May AGM, but Peter mentioned that Jim regularly gets in meeting, we will hold a Branch Mini-Show and in touch with local newspapers and also goes around August we will stage a Branch Show at the Summer asking shops if they will put up publicity posters. garden show at Broadlands. It’s a big tent to fill and Our Librarian is Philip Clemow, and although the we hope as many people as possible will take part. branch Library is not used as much as we’d like, it is We have also finally been allocated some storage always available. The main stock of books can now space at the meeting hall and this will help the be kept at the meeting hall, and this means that the library. David ended by thanking everyone who full stock of books should be available each month. helps at our events, takes part in the raffle or the table show. Moving on to Pots and Sundries, the branch still has a stock of BEF pots - Peter said that some of his are Margaret Corina handed out a summary of the now 40 years old. David Corina mentioned that the accounts for 2006 and then went through some of BEF moulds are getting old and may have not been the key figures of the branch’s finances. The branch repolished, so the quality and thickness seems to be had achieved a surplus of £585, which was slightly going down. Malcolm Pym now owns the moulds down on last year due to the fact that we had taken but is in poor health. At some date in the future, the part in one less event, and we had also bought some branch will have to decide whether it is worthwhile expensive books. We now have over £6000 in our service to carry on obtaining and selling these items. Building Society account and the interest on this helps to cover the hall rent for the monthly Geoff Card was formerly Chairman of the New meetings. The accounts were accepted by the Forest branch, but joined us when that branch closed members, and Margaret went on to thank everyone down. He helps out at many of our events. Peter also who does something for the branch – anyone who thanked Glenn Finn (and family) for providing the buys a cup of tea, borrows a book or buys or sells refreshments at meetings and other events. Glenn plants is helping to raise funds for the branch. She thanked David Neville and Margaret Corina who especially thanked June Purseglove for handling the help him in the kitchen. raffle and those members who donated prices for the raffle. She also thanked Colin and Lorraine Bielckus Peter thanked David Neville for everything that he for preparing the branch’s financial accounts. does for the branch, including bringing us news from the BCSS National meetings. Peter also Peter thanked Margaret and David Corina for their thanked June for handling the raffle at each meeting. work for the branch, and also thanked Colin and Lorraine. He then discussed some of the other David Corina thanked me for looking after the Committee reports, starting with our Shows monthly newsletter, handling e-mail communication Manager, Ivor Biddlecombe. Ivor stated that the for the branch, and maintaining the branch website. table show only has about 5 regular entrants Many branches don’t have a newsletter, and few do (although with reference to the food for the one every month. Gordon Rowley receives copies of American Supper, there was rather more on the table our newsletter and has said that he enjoys reading for this meeting!) He encouraged members to just them. Member do seem to enjoy the write ups, and bring plants in, even if it was just occasionally. It even the speakers are impressed with the written must encourage newcomers to see more plants at the account of their talk. meetings. He also mentioned that if any of your plants require identification, do bring them along to Peter proceeded to thank all the members for the meetings and someone will help to name them. coming to the meetings. buying plants, buying Peter mentioned that for Plants of Interest, it was refreshments and taking part in the raffle. The BCSS Southampton & District Branch January 2007 Newsletter branch’s finances are currently very sound – a far in low-cut tops and backless dresses. It’s good for cry from the old days when turnover was £30 and me - the bushmen have sworn by it for hundreds of the branch had to be supported by loans from years and that's good enough for me." various individuals. If you have any ideas about what the branch should spend it’s money on, do let Hoodia comes from an ugly-looking cactus that us know. thrives in the high temperatures of the African Kalahari dessert. The San Bushmen of the Kalahari, We had again been underwhelmed with nominations one of the world's oldest and most primitive tribes, for the Committee, so all of the existing committee have been eating the cactus for thousands of years. were re-elected. Peter pointed out that the They use it to stave off hunger during long hunting committee is getting on in years, and won’t be able trips and to keep their youngsters’ cravings at bay to carry on forever - we could really do with some when food is in short supply. younger members joining the committee. But how does it work? Well, here’s the science bit: The final task was to hand out the Table Show there is a part of your brain called the hypothalamus, trophies. This was straightforward since Bruce and within that mid-brain are the nerve cells that Beckerleg had won all 4 trophies! There was sense glucose sugar. When you’re full, the cells tell however one new winner, in the form of Jean the brain that your blood sugar levels are good and Burnay, who had won the Ladies Cup, having there is no need to eat more food for now. Hoodia scored the highest points by a female exhibitor. causes these cells to send the same message to the brain. So, the nerve cells are firing as if you were Finally, Peter mentioned that he had recently come full, but you’re not. And you’re not hungry either. across some of our former members – David Philips and Iris Palmer - and both had passed on their good Hoodia takes years to mature and so to protect it, wishes to the branch. With this, it was time for the pharmaceutical giants who are keen to manufacture members to be allowed to tuck into the food! the plant as a slimming aid to the western world have begun growing it across huge plantations of the The bio-pharmaceutical company Phytopharm, Snippets
based in Cambridge, has been routinely testing the [ Below is an article which Peter Down found. It’s a plant and has isolated a previously unknown fairly thorough description of the use of Hoodia gordonii molecule in it, which it has christened P57. The as a supplement which may help reduce food intake. ] molecule has been patented by the company, but the cactus itself, being a living plant, cannot be. [Ed. Is this the Slimming Secret of the Stars? other articles state that the patent is owned by the
South African Council for Scientific and Industrial Imagine this: an organic pill that kills the appetite Research, and has been licensed by Phytopharm]
and attacks obesity. It has no known side-effects,
and contains a molecule that fools your brain into What Happens If You Eat the Cactus Itself?
believing you are full.
The BBC sent a reporter to the Kalahari desert to Are you fascinated by how the stars manage to stay test the benefits of this wonder-herb. Tom Mangold so very thin? I’ve regularly come to the conclusion tucked into the raw Hoodia cactus, which he that after all the personal training, liposuction, described as "a slightly unpleasant-tasting, fleshy colonic irrigation, nips, tucks and what not, there plant", eating a piece about half the size of a banana. must be a little extra assistance at hand. And I’m not So did his cameraman. On their four-hour drive talking about the class A kind that celebrities so back to Capetown, both of them felt good and often get caught snorting. neither of them thought about food. “Our brains really were telling us we were full. It was a Then I stumbled across a couple of articles reporting magnificent deception,” says Tom. that the likes of Nicole Richie and the Desperate Housewives stars are apparently getting a little Neither of them wanted dinner, and the next day helping hand from a little-known South African herb neither of them wanted breakfast. Lunch was eaten called Hoodia. According to one of Nicole’s pals with little pleasure, and their appetite did not return (who spilled the beans to More magazine) the tiny fully until 24 hours had passed. starlet once confessed: "Hoodia makes you look hot BCSS Southampton & District Branch January 2007 Newsletter On reading this report, I couldn’t resist trying that taking it twice a day did help to reduce my Hoodia. I’m a big fan of the GI Diet, simply because appetite. There were a couple of particular instances it lets you eat lots and feel full without putting on on my way home from work when I felt absolutely weight (well, if you’re ‘good’, that is). I wondered if ravenous and decided to try one of the capsules. trying this new wonder herb would help to curb my Within about ten minutes the hunger had subsided. appetite a little in order to shift a couple of extra That’s not to say I didn’t want dinner when I got in, pounds before the Christmas parties get into full but I possibly ate less than I might otherwise have swing. I spoke to James Leon, who owns the Pure done. Hoodia company here in the UK, and ordered myself a sample. In another instance on a Friday evening when I was about to head home via the chip shop after a night James discovered Hoodia when he was at a rural with friends at the pub, Hoodia came to my rescue trade fair in South Africa about 12 years ago. He again. And I was pretty pleased with myself when I now buys direct from the South African farmers woke up the next morning. who he established a direct link with. While I was running my Hoodia test, I didn’t feel as “I really like it because it’s a herb and therefore though I was eating a lot less than usual and yet I natural,” says James. And while many other Hoodia did manage to lose 2lbs over two weeks. At certain suppliers choose to mix up the Hoodia herb with snack times I was less hungry and didn’t really think things like green tea or chromium (which is said to about food. But that said, Hoodia doesn’t take away boost the metabolism), James says it’s perfect in its the appetite completely, which can only be a good natural form and he likes to keep it that way. thing. Not eating all of the necessary vitamins and minerals will obviously always be detrimental to Hoodia may take a few days to start taking effect one’s health. But using a herb to simply help to curb and the recommended dosage may be anything from the appetite can’t be bad, can it? one or two capsules a day for people who only have a little to lose, to around six for a 25-stone man. Hoodia has few known side effects at the moment. “People may already have a suppressed appetite But it might be worth mentioning that a report in the before they notice any weight loss,” says James, New York Times claims there may be unwanted who explains that to lose 1lb of fat, a person must effects on the liver, caused by other components in burn up 3,500 calories, which can take a while. “But Hoodia which cannot easily be removed from the today someone who started taking Hoodia at the supplement. While this has yet to be proven, further beginning of October emailed me and said they’d tests are needed before the full-known effects of the lost a stone,” he added proudly. It is entirely up to the individual if they wish to But lawyer to the San tribe’s South African lawyer continue using Hoodia when they’ve reached their Roger Chennells believes Hoodia is the answer to target weight. James tends to find that people may obesity in the West, and for his people, the end of contact him to buy a two or three month supply, poverty in the Kalahari desert. He told the BBC: then they stay at their target weight for six months, "The San will finally throw off thousands of years before coming back later when the weight starts to of oppression, poverty, social isolation and creep back on. discrimination. I envisage Hoodia cafes in London and New York,” he says. “Salads will be served and “People eat for different reasons, and if it’s out of the Hoodia cut like cucumber on to the salad. It will boredom or because they’re unhappy, then maybe need flavouring to counter its unpleasant taste, but if Hoodia might not be the right thing for them in that it has no side effects and no cumulative side-effects, instance. But for those who want to lose weight and this is where we’re going." are prepared to stick to a diet, or cut back between meals – it can be very helpful,” says James. “We As for whether Nicole Richie and the Desperate sell thousands of pots a month, which is based on Housewives cast are using the herb to keep their the fact that we have a good product and a good frames stick-thin, I couldn’t possibly say. But what I customer service. I’m usually the one who answers will say is, if they are, they must be using a very the phone.” strong dose to make their appetites so very small. To me, Hoodia seems more like a herbal diet We Put Hoodia to the Test
supplement to aid healthy eating, as opposed to the pharmaceutical slimming drugs that speed up the I tried Hoodia over a two-week period and found metabolism and can keep their users awake at night. BCSS Southampton & District Branch January 2007 Newsletter And if it is proven to have no side effects and help suggesting a fistful of ferrets, or even the fond out obesity, that can surely only be a good thing. attentions of a significant other, oh no, we’re talking Pet Trees - the latest hot key ring accessory to hit Nicole O'Neil, MSN Lifestyle the market since the last one. … . Coming in two varieties, these tree-meets-cactus things are the [One of the trendiest gifts to buy on the Internet right now closest many of us will ever get to the green belt. is something called a “Pet Tree”, which consists of a low The two trees Victo and Rance, symbolise luck & maintenance cactus or succulent in a small glass vial. victory, and unchanging love & courage, and Here are some descriptions from typical sellers .] fortunately you don’t need green fingers in order to keep them alive. Water them every month or so (it A new type of Pet
changes depending on the season), and let them sit in the sunshine as much as possible. When they What a stroke of genius! Think of it as an extremely grow to a certain size, you can remove the tree from miniature garden in a handy protective jar – just the bell jar and replant it either indoors or outdoors. what you need if home is a caravan, prison or (From www.traffordcentreshopping.co.uk) The astonishing Pet Tree puts a little bit of ‘mother nature’ right in the palm of your hand, so laugh at
landscaping and pooh-pooh pruning, because these Next Month’s Meeting
natural wonders are virtually self-sufficient!
Our next meeting will be held on February 6th, and Far from needing daily love and attention, the Pet will feature a talk with the interesting title of
Tree’s care instructions will take about 23 seconds “Succulents on a Shoestring” by John Watmough.
to read and carry out once in a blue moon, and if it
does all go horribly wrong, it’s a few quid down the The February table show will consist of the
drain and not a lifetime’s hard work. Of course we’d Rebutia group (cacti) and the Echeveria subgroup
never encourage laziness or neglect, but we reckon (succulents). Please note that you can submit more
that sounds ideal!
Fancy a holiday? No need to grovel around looking The Rebutia group includes Rebutia, Aylostera, for neighbours who’ll water your pride and joy in Cintia, Cylindrorebutia, Digitorebutia, your absence – the handy clip means you can fix Pet Mediolobivia, Neorebutia, Setirebutia, Sulcorebutia Tree to your mobile phone and take it everywhere and Weingartia. you go. (From crazyfruitbat.com) The Echeveria subgroup includes Echeveria, Cremnophila, Dudleya, Graptopetalum, Just like having the Eden Project in your pocket, Hasseanthus, Oliveranthus. Pachyphytum,
only without all the tourists - which would be more Stylophyllum, Tacitus, Thompsonella and Urbinia.
than any pair of trousers could stand. If it’s been a
while since you’ve had anything alive in your
trousers, other than yourself of course, then you A reminder for Committee members that a
don’t know what you’re missing. We’re not committee meeting will be held on 15th January.
“Argentina - Part 1” – Cliff Thompson Southampton “Succulents on a Shoestring” – John Watmough “Arizona Adventure – Part 1” – Alan Phipps Southampton “Conophytums” – Steven Hammer Branch website: http://www.southampton.bcss.org.uk ? 2007 British Cactus & Succulent Society - Southampton & District Branch
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