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Welcome to the CANWOS website !


We are a group of enthusiasts who meet to share our enjoyment of orchids.
Membership is open to anyone who is interested.
Beginners are very welcome!
Web site last update - 17th April 2018

Programme 2017/2018

Friday 22nd September The Masdevallia Story

Steve Manning

Saturday 21st October
A visit to Lourens Grobler’s orchid nursery in South Africa

Iain Wright

Saturday 18th November
Growing orchids indoors

Frances Quesada- Pallares (OSGB)

CANWOS entries for the BOC Photographic Competition
Saturday 20th January Provisionally: Orchids in Thailand

Iain Wright

This meeting will be held at Gordale Garden Centre, CH64 8TF, as part of their Orchid Festival 2018
Saturday 17th February
Bring a Plant meeting. Cultural discussion
based on members’ plants – each member attending to bring a plant
Voting in BOC Photographic Competition
Saturday 17st March
What I have enjoyed with LYCASTE, IDA and ANGULOA
with a diversion into the magic of orchid shows.
Collecting, growing, exhibiting, hybridising and pollination

Henry Oakeley

Friday 20th April
The Auction

Download an Auction Catalogue
by clicking here.

This meeting will be held at Saltney Community Centre,
Sandy Lane, Saltney CH4 8UB.

Friday 18th May
Growing in Baskets.

Tony Taylor

(Lincolnshire Orchid Group)

This meeting will be held at Saltney Community Centre,
Sandy Lane, Saltney CH4 8UB.

A date to be arranged in June
A field trip, probably to North Wales coast
Friday 22nd September
with other delights


We meet once each month except December, July and August. Visitors are welcome for a small fee.

This season the hall that we have used for more than thirty years, St Mary's Church Hall in Handbridge, is being rebuilt and we have to use temporary accomodation. Our April and May meetings will be held at Saltney Community Centre. (Directions)

The venue for the June meeting has not yet been fixed but will be listed here as soon as it has.

Traditionally, we have met on the evening of the last Friday of the month. Those of us who come a distance to the meetings have experienced problems with traffic congestion at Bank Holliday weekends as Chester is on a major holiday route to North Wales. This year, as an experiment, we are varying our meeting day.

Whilst we have British Summer Time in operation, we will be meeting on the next to last Friday evening of the month and when Greenwich Mean time is in operation, we will meet on the next to last Saturday afternoon of the month. The one exception to this is the March 2018 meeting which is on the third Saturday of a five Saturday month, enabling us to avoid overlapping with the European Orchid Congress in Paris on the fourth Saturday and keeping well away from Easter on the fifth weekend.

Saturday afternoon meetings will usually have the room booked from 2 to 5pm with the meeting starting at 2.30pm whilst Friday evening meetings usually have the room booked from 7 to 10pm with the meeting starting at 8pm.

Members are encouraged to bring their plants in flower to each meeting. Records are kept of how these plants are grown and sometimes, individual plants are discussed with the owner. There is a wealth of information within the Society and it is our tradition that this is shared freely amongst members.

We send an email to all our members about ten days before our regular meetings, to remind them what is on and to pass on other information. We are happy to send these to non-members and potential visitors - please make the request via the 'Contact Us' tab at the foot of this page.

At most meetings there is a raffle. Members usually donate orchid plants. Refreshments such as tea and coffee are available during the evening, usually immediately after the speaker.

We have a library that contains many books suitable for both beginners and experts. Members can borrow books for one month and can browse the reference books, which cannot be loaned out.

Plants & Auction

We try to arrange the sale of plants regularly throughout the year from respected nurseries.

At meetings where no other plants are available, members may offer their own orchid plants for sale.  A 20% seller's premium is levied abd donated to the Society.

Each year we hold an auction where members buy and sell plants. Typically, about eighty plants are sold each year, usually at very advantageous prices. A seller's and buyer's premium operates (10% for each) and the proceeds are donated to the Society. This is an excellent way to extend a collection and try new types of orchid.

British Orchid Council Our national organisation for orchid growing. There are lots of links here to other orchid societies around the country.
Orchid Photographs If you like orchid pictures, this site is a good place to start. If you like orchid species pictures, then ...
Jay Pfahl's Orchid Photographs ... this is the place for you. Work down through the preamble and finally reach over 17,158 orchids.
The International Orchid Register Search the database of registered hybrids.
Use full or partial names to identify parents and children of a grex.
Orchid History Ron Rigby's site with lots of information on the history of orchid growing


The annual subscription is currently £12. We no longer offer double or family membership. Subscriptions are normally paid to the Membership Secretary at or just after the October meeting.

Charitable Status

CANWOS registered with the the Charity Commission in 1993 but surrendered its registration in 2011.  It is now a "Charity exempt from the need to register".  Tax paying members can still benefit the Society by making a Gift Aid declaration. Details can be obtained from the Treasurer at any of the meetings.

Membership & Affiliation

The Society is a member of the British Orchid Council (BOC) and sends two representatives to its meetings. CANWOS is affiliated to the Royal Horticultural Society and members can use some of the benefits available.


A copy of our present Constitution is available for downloading by clicking on " CANWOS Constitution.pdf".   This was revised at our 2012 AGM.

Contact us

Click here.

Getting To Saltney Community Centre, Sandy Lane, Saltney CH4 8UB.

Come into Chester to the large roundabout on the A483, just to the south of the Grosvenor Bridge across the river Dee.

Instead of turning east onto Overleigh Road, towards St Mary’s Church, turn west onto the A5104, towards Saltney and Hough Green.

Follow the A5104 for nearly three miles, under a railway bridge and past trading estates until you see a Morrisons supermarket on the right.

Once you are past the Morrison’s petrol station, take the next left turn onto Sandy Lane and within 20 metres, turn right into the Community Centre’s car park.