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MARCH MEETING INFO: All About Cork, Natural & Renewable, with Pamela Koide Hyatt

Pamela Koide Hyatt
SDHS Member Pamela Koide Hyatt

A few years ago, after a visit to Portugal that included a visit to a stopper production factory, Pamela Koide Hyatt learned about Cork, Quercus suber. In this interesting presentation she will discuss where and how cork is grown, all the benefits and uses of cork.

Cork has been used for mounting orchids and bromeliads for years. Tillandsia airplants grow best when attached to cork bark. The uneven surface is perfect for finding just the right spot to attach them to. They will quickly root and become permanent. ​

Some old cork oak forests in Alentejo, south central Portugal, where the majority of the cork trees are farmed.

Pamela has been exploring and growing Bromeliads, with an emphasis on Tillandsias for more than half her life. Since starting Bird Rock Tropicals in 1981, Pamela has traveled extensively throughout Mexico, Central and South America in search of tillandsias. During these travels she has discovered more than a dozen species new to science as well as many more natural hybrids.

Among Pamela's many accomplishments she hybridizes and grows tillandsias from seed. It can take up to two years for the seed to be ready to harvest. Growing the plants to maturity can take anywhere from three to twenty years. One of these hybrids, Tillandsia Samantha, was nominated for 'Plant of the Year' at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show in 2012, and in 2013, Tillandsia Samantha won the 'Glass Tulip Award' in the category of houseplants. The Glass Tulip Award is one of the most prestigious awards in Horticulture awarded by FloraHolland.

In 2014 Pamela published Tilli-Cards™, a set of 100 reference cards for species and hybrid tillandsias. In 2015, Pamela created and developed the first Application for IOS smart phones related to Tillandsias. The app, Air Plant Tilli-Cards, is a reference guide to the identification and cultivation of Tillandsia air plants. The app can be easily updated to include most species and many common hybrids.


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