This year, the winner of the Henry Teuscher Award, presented as part of the 21st Great Gardening Weekend at the Jardin botanique de Montréal, is an inquisitive science communicator, a veteran researcher, a devoted gardener and a collector of both books and plants. A biologist by training, André Poliquin is a horticultural enthusiast known both in Quebec and elsewhere for his extensive knowledge of clematis, roses, orchids and other plants.
Starting in 1987, his interest in orchids led him to take part in various horticultural exhibitions across Quebec. In 1989, he became President of Les Orchidophiles de Montréal, and in that capacity directed the international orchid show in Montréal, Orchidexpo, until 2017. Today he is the organization’s Honorary President, and continues to support the event considered one of the most important of its kind in Canada and northeastern North America. He is a member of several orchid societies in France, Belgium, the United Kingdom and the United States and the Canadian representative to the American Orchid Society (AOS), and has forged valuable bonds with leading figures in the international orchid community.
Mr. Poliquin also loves roses, and so naturally was one of the earliest members of the Société des Roses du Québec, and served as its President in 2000. He organized the transfer of the society’s activities to premises at the Jardin botanique, where the annual Rosexpo exhibition is now held every year.
Over the years he has published many popular science and more technical articles, spoken on radio and television and lectured widely on all these topics. He has also written a book on growing clematis in Quebec, as well as one on growing Phalaenopsis orchids, and contributed to other publications on orchids.
Now that he has retired he has the time to devote himself entirely to these passions. He travels the globe in search of new plants, meeting with renowned producers and hybridizers, visiting the loveliest gardens and admiring the most impressive international collections and exhibitions. He is also a hybridizer himself and has created some new cultivars, the best known being Buxus sempervirens ‘Mont-Bruno’.
The Henry Teuscher Award, yesterday and today
Henry Teuscher, a visionary and passionate horticulturist, botanist and landscape architect (1891–1984), designed the Jardin botanique de Montréal. He worked closely with Brother Marie-Victorin, and was responsible for designing several of the exhibition greenhouses and putting together some of the garden’s main plant collections. Since it was created in 1999, the Henry Teuscher Award has been presented to: Yves Gagnon (2017), Bertrand Dumont (2016), Claude Vallée (2015), Albert Mondor (2014), Isabelle Dupras (2013), Francis H. Cabot (2012, posthumously), Hélène Leclerc (2011), Jacques André Rioux (2010), Elsie Reford and Alexander Reford (2009), Jean-Claude Vigor (2008), Émile Jacqmain (2007), Fred Oehmichen (2006), Daniel A. Séguin (2005), Gaëtan Hamel (2004), Milan B. Havlin (2003), Henri and Camille Perron (2002), Wilfrid Meloche (2001), Roger Van den Hende (2000) and Tony Huber (1999).
About Espace pour la vie
Espace pour la vie is made up of four attractions on the same site: the Biodôme, Insectarium, Jardin botanique and Planétarium Rio Tinto Alcan. These four prestigious municipal institutions form Canada's largest natural science museum complex. Together, they are launching a daring, creative urban movement, urging everyone to rethink the connection between humankind and nature and cultivate a new way of living.- 30 -