ARS Victoria Newsletter – July 2010
The date of our conference is getting closer and we are starting to get registrations. When we started planning this conference we debated what the theme should be. Since this is also the 50th anniversary of both the ARS (Victorian branch) and the National Rhododendron Gardens (NRG) at Olinda, one thought was to make it a historical review. The history of a society is often pretty dry stuff but the history of the development of a botanical garden can be considerably more interesting. Since the ARS history is so tightly linked to that of the NRG we thought it might be appropriate to focus on the gardens, with the society history added more or less in passing. Several ways of presenting this information were debated. At one stage we thought about having a significant fraction of the talks on this theme but we were worried that might be a bit parochial for an international conference. We also thought it would be nice for attendees to have something to take away with them so maybe a book would be better, but then who would know enough about the history, have good enough writing skills and the time to prepare such a manuscript? Also we wondered how many people would be prepared to read such a book. Many people when reading historical books skim through, mainly looking at the illustrations and reading the captions. So the book should have lots of illustrations? Well maybe the book should be mainly illustrations, a pictorial history of the gardens and the society. Most people like looking at historical pictures as the historical photographic panels we have prepared for use at shows have proven.
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