The Rare Fruit Club, Western Australia

Aims, Structure and Activities

1

Aims

 a.The Club’s interest is in sub-tropical and tropical fruit trees that can be grown in the South West of Western Australia.
 b.Members are encouraged to take on the challenge of exploring which exotic fruit tree species or unusual varieties can be grown in our environment given appropriate attention to their needs when possible.
 c. Promotion of the many benefits and enjoyment of regularly including a wide variety of healthy and tasty home-grown fruit in the diet.
 d.Educative, with the hope that members will become more knowledgeable in the management of these plants to produce bountiful and delicious crops.
 e.Provide an effective means of facilitating interactions and sharing of knowledge and plant materials between fellow enthusiasts and growers.
 f.Development of lasting and valued friendships.
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2.

Structure

 a. The Club is a non-commercial, not-for-profit organisation.
 b.Membership is open to all those interested in the botanical properties, management and other horticultural considerations of growing these plants, including private enthusiasts, commercial orchardists and professionals from government, industry and research organisations. There is no need for nomination by existing members, and no minimum entry requirements regarding horticultural knowledge or experience.
 c.Administrative matters will be kept as simple as possible, and for the present the Club will remain un-incorporated without the need to comply with State government regulations regarding an annual tax audit, Annual General Meeting procedures, submission of Meeting Minutes etc. General club correspondence will be electronic to minimise handling and postage costs.
 dThe Club will be administered by an Executive elected by members for two year periods at a regular meeting by a majority show of hands, provided a quorum of 30% of existing members is met. Elected positions are honorary and for the present will be President, Secretary, Treasurer, Web Site Editor, Membership Registrar and Newsletter Editor. In addition, the Executive may invite a further two co-opted members to serve for the current term. The present Executive will serve until early 2018, but a Special Meeting can be held at any time before then if requested by at least 15% of the membership.
 e.Member’s privacy should be respected at all times. Networking between individuals is encouraged, but email addresses of others should not be divulged without their prior consent. Only some of the Executive will maintain complete lists of all member contact details.
 f.Information and techniques will be exchanged and demonstrated through regular meetings of members, maintenance of a web site containing relevant information, a regular e-Newsletter and other periodic communications.
 g.The Club web site will be accessible to all members and the public, and members are encouraged to contribute material (ie articles they have composed, photos illustrating important features, notification of upcoming events etc) through our Web Editor for the benefit of all. The site will contain horticultural information on fruit trees that can be grown or are currently being trialled by Club members in Western Australia, together with other important information such as a Bulletin Board, a Glossary of botanical terms frequently encountered, Essays and Articles on fruit trees, soils and management, Recipes, and other Articles on the nutritional value of fruit. Members can nominate possible new species to be included on the site, with preference given to those already being grown or trialled. Contributed Articles over signed names are the responsibility of the author for veracity of all statements.
 h.A Bank Club Account shall be maintained for all funds transacted through the Club. This will be administered by the Club Treasurer, with two co-signatories of the Executive required for any withdrawal of funds. An annual Report on Club financial transactions will be communicated to all financial members.
 i.Membership fees, currently $10, are for Calendar years, single or family, and are non-refundable.
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Activities - Rules and Code of Conduct at Meetings

 a.Club survey results to date regarding meetings have been overwhelmingly in favour of these taking place at member’s properties. For this to happen on a regular basis, the hope is that members will be willing to volunteer as future hosts. There is no requirement for properties to have a minimum size or number of fruit trees as it’s important for others to appreciate how usually something can be productively grown no matter how limited the space. Similarly there is no requirement for hosts to have a minimum amount of experience as visits provide a valuable opportunity to obtain on-site advice from more experienced members.
 b. Normally with notice of upcoming meetings no RSVP is required, but if hosts are concerned about unduly large numbers then this can be specified. Hosts are not expected to provide other than hot water facilities for tea and coffee. No one is expected to spend time cooking elaborate dishes for these occasions.
 c. Visiting members are expected to bring along a small sample of food that all can taste after the site tour, preferably something from their own property and even more appreciated if it provides an opportunity for members to taste unusual fruit for the first time. When they have spare plant material (eg seeds and seedlings, grafting material etc) that other members might value, these can also be brought along either for swapping, donating or auctioning. All monetary proceeds from auctioned material will be to the benefit of the club.
 d.Fruit placed on a table by members are for all to enjoy after the tour, and no one should take or consume undue quantities that compromises this intention.
 e.Members should endeavour to wear name tags at all meetings to encourage friendly discussion and facilitate future interactions.
 f.Time will be allocated after the tour at each meeting when members can seek further details from the host and attendees on plants and management strategies described, followed by discussion of any other horticultural issues members may have concerning their own plants.
 g.Meetings are usually held on weekends, with an attempt to vary these between Saturdays and Sundays depending on host preferences so as to maximise opportunities for members to be able to attend at least some sessions.
 h.With site visits, members should respect the host’s property and not take any fruit, plant material or other items without express permission.
 i.Members are encouraged to invite friends to come along to meetings as guests. Afterwards they can either become a financial member or decide the Club is not for them. The introducing member should ensure they are aware of club etiquette, rules and waivers before arrival at meetings. On arrival, the guest should be introduced to the host and at least one member of the Executive.
 j.During site visits, members should give due regard to hosts when taken on the tour round their property, addressing any questions through them concerning what has been said or described, and without conducting side conversations that may distract others, or drifting off in separate groups inspecting other plants. There will always be plenty of time for individual and group discussions after the tour, and members are encouraged to maximise these friendly and educative interactions as much as possible.
 k.The Club is not insured and members and their possible guests attend site visits entirely at their own risk. The Club and Executive does not accept any responsibility or liability in any form for possible injuries, accidents or loss of property. Submission of membership fees to become a financial member, and attendance as a guest is taken as contractual evidence of acceptance of these conditions. This applies also to host liabilities during a Club site visit when members and any guests are allowed onto their property; entry is dependent on acceptance of this waiver.
 l.We acknowledge that these rules have been formulated part way through the year rather than at the start when deciding on joining or renewing membership of the Club. Nevertheless, existing members in 2016 who cannot accept the above conditions and waivers can either resign immediately or not attend future meetings while the year’s membership lapses.