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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!
Last update - 19nd June 2017

Programme 2016/2017

28th October


Scott Barrie,
Barrita Orchids,
25th November
CANWOS entries for the BOC Photographic Competition
A Seasonal Quiz on Orchids - for fun!
27th January
How to get an orchid pregnant Steve Manning
24th February
A Cultural Discussion
31st March
The Auction
Download a plant registration
form by clicking here.

Download an Auction Catalogue
by clicking here.
28th April
Weird and smelly orchids Laurence Hobbs
26th May
To be confirmed
Change of Date
30th 24th June
A field trip to Llay, just north of Wrexham.
Download a pdf describing the meeting
by clicking here.
29th September
with other delights

Where We Meet

We use the hall just behind St Mary's Church on Overleigh Road, just South of the River Dee.

The post code for the Church is CH4 7HL.

View Google Map

local map

The church is an imposing building and easily spotted, whether you approach from the city center by way of the old bridge ...
from the east

... or from the west by way of the new bridge or the Wrexham road / A55 junction.
from the west

The hall is directly behind the church and hardly visible from the road.
Go down the driveway between a telephone kiosk and the church itself and turn right.
The drive way
Orchid History Ron Rigby's site with lots of information on the history of orchid growing
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.


We meet at St Mary's Church Hall, Handbridge, Chester, usually on the last Friday of the month but not in December, July or August. The Hall is open from 7.30pm. Visitors are welcome in exchange for a small fee.


A programme of speakers is organised.  Talks vary from orchid hunting in the wild to cultivation of different types of orchid. All members get a chance to ask the speaker questions.  This frequently generates interesting discussions.


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.


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.

Plants & Auction

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

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.

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

Display Table

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.

Raffle & Refreshments

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.


The Society supports orchid conservation and has donated funds to both the Rio Atlantic Trust, a rainforest orchid conservation project in Brazil, to refurbish a study centre for visiting students and holiday visitors and also to Treborth Botanical Garden to help insulate their orchid house.

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.