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Hi All,

This year is my 30th consecutive as a member of the CPS. How many others have been knocking about for so long?

I guess Steve Morley, Mike King, and Dave Ahrens probably have, but who else?

Feeling old anyone?

Nigel HC

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Guest paul y

i would of needed to of joined when i was 7 to equal that target, i have met you nigel i would of put our ages on a par based upon appearance, have you mastered the art of immortality? or is that olay your using? i did have an uphill paper round when i was ten im sure it aged me prematurely.

i joined this year for the first time ever and it is well worth it.

may join the icps but am also saving for lots of redfern books as well, im sure the books will win out (on a side if anyone has any of stewarts redfern cp books they want to sell send me a pm)

regards paul

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Hi Paul,

A combination of black magic and excessive alcohol consumption to aid the enbalming process helps.

Nigel

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Hi Nigel

 

the member with the longest continuous member is John Sirkett.  He is one of 3 with a 2 digit membership number and we have another 13 with a three digit number. 

 

I can't tell when they joined as, when the database was first set up, join dates weren't recorded but they all must be in the very early days.

 

Since the society was first formed in 1978 we have had over 11,000 members at one time or another.

 

cheers

 

Dennis

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Hi Dennis,

Wow, 11000 members over the years is impressive, what a pity they aren't all members still! I just miss the 3 digit number with 1022.

Nigel

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I think that I joined some time around 1990, so I have not been going quite as long as Nigel. I joined the ICPS first then the CPS.

I suppose we all start with a VFT when we are 7 years old which we end up killing but the interest remains.I was looking in the RHS's Plant Finder when I came across suppliers of VFT's. Oneof them was Marston Exotics which I saw were based in Hertfortshire. This is the next county to me so I though that I would pay them a visit. I couldn't find Madley on the map so I rang them and found out that they  were in Herefordshire, which is miles away. I got talking to Paul's wife, Jackie, and she told me how easy VFT's were to grow.. I got on the 250 CC Honda motorbike and rode up there.

I ended up buying their starter kit with 4 plants, plus a P.grandiflora. I still remember the fresh smell of plants when I arrived home and opened the top box.. The traps on the VFT were all shut of course, but they soon recover. 

In those days I used my parent's greenhouse. I had a period with no greenhouse, just my flat. My wife has a greenhouse now with her mostly seed grown Sarries. 

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Same here, had the vft at 7 and went form there. At that time there was nothing even approaching a quarter of what's around now, and the only chance we had to see the rare species were in some of the books, especially one or two Japanese titles which had sometimes grainy shots taken in habitat.

Glad I bought most of these when they were published, judging by the cost of them now.

Its amazing how things have changed, I remember the first time I saw a Heliamphora in the flesh, and how incredible it was, having only been privvy to a couple of old photos!

Nigel

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I bought Slack's second book on my visit to Marston Exotics. It is like rocking horse poo these days. A beautifully written book. 

I have collected quite a few books over the years. I bought Joel's book (three authors altogether), The Carnivorous Plants. It was over a hundred pounds in Wisley's bookshop. It probably goes for quite a lot these days.

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I remember seeing for about £100 at Wisley but was brassic at the time, same as I am now because of the kids. I have managed to get it since, and yes have seen it go for silly money.

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You don't have to spend fortunes on all books. There is a Darwin bookshop behind King's Parade in Cambridge, opposite King's College. I think it is in St Edwards Passage, something like that. I picked up a second edition of Darwin's Insectivorous Plants for £40. It is dated about 1890. I also picked an old edition of Origin of Species for about £50.

At the other end, I bought a first edition of Insectivorous Plants for £130 from Alibris a while back. It is supposed to fetch about £1000 on a good day.Worth holding onto.

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That's the good thing with books, they generally increase in value over time, or until they are reprinted.

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the member with the longest continuous member is John Sirkett.  He is one of 3 with a 2 digit membership number

Why doesn't that surprise me.

 

I haven't been a cps member for 30 years, but I was growing Sarras 30 years ago, as well as killing the odd VFT as a young kid like everyone else.

I used to go to Chelsea regularly in the early 80's, and bought plants from Marston Exotics (I believe Adrian?).

But then I had my 'years in the wilderness', before returning to the fold 11 years ago.

 

What is interesting, is to compare price then and now :shock:  I've still got two original price lists - 'Nepenthes Winter 1984 to Winter 1985' and 'Carnivorous Plants 1985'.

S. oreophila (rare, for collection only) - £20

S. flava 'maxima' - £12

Most of the Sarra hybrids were £12.50, the cheapest hybrid - S. x minata was £7. Whilst S. x mooreana 'Marston Clone' was £17.

Although you could get unnamed hybrids for £4.

 

Not many Nepenthes available, but Lowland Species (mostly £12-£15) ranged from N. leptochila (now hirsute) at £9 to N. macrovulgaris at £18. With Bargain Offer small Raffs at £5.

The few Lowland hybrids were £14-£16

 

Hyland species (8 species and 1 hybrid available) ranged from N. fusca at £12 to N. lowii (NEW) at £30, even N. maxima was £20.

 

How things have changed in terms of what is available, whilst prices have not changed or even come down.

 

And YES, I still treasure my 1984 revised copy of Slacks Carnivorous Plants, priced £7.50

Edited by Phil Green
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