Australian Orchid Foundation

In memory of


1923 ~ 2013

Rosemary Carter was born on 31st March, 1923 in Port Kembla, NSW. She met Owen Carter in Fremantle during WW2 and they were married in Perth at the end of the war on 23rd April, 1946.

Rosemary and Owen Carter bought their first orchid while living in Wollongong and their love affair with orchids developed over the years. When they moved to Victoria they decided to ‘grow and show’ their plants and joined several orchid clubs in the Melbourne metropolitan area. They became avid collectors, building two glasshouses and improving their plants over the years.

They both became very involved in the various orchid clubs – both Owen and Rosemary held various office positions on the committees of these clubs. Owen was President of Warringal Orchid Club along with other office bearing positions for a number of years. He also became an accredited Orchid Societies Council of Victoria (OSCOV) judge.

Rosemary also held positions on the Warringal Orchid Club committee for a number of years. She would always help at many of the Melbourne clubs’ orchid shows; either writing prize cards, collecting money, providing advice on orchid culture to visitors and serving at the canteen. Rosemary liked to be involved and help people. She continued to attend club meetings and to help at orchid shows after Owen passed away in December 2007.

The depth of Rosemary’s care for others was demonstrated when she went to visit a very ill orchid club member who was unconscious in hospital. She was told that only family could visit. She convinced the nursing staff that she was their patient’s mother and so managed to sit and talk although the patient was unresponsive at the time. The member made a full recovery.

Rosemary was an educator all her adult life. She taught in Special Education schools in Western Australia, Tasmania and Victoria. She was a ‘Special Guider’ in Western Australia and Tasmania, often taking Guides out for weekend and weekly camps.

In her retirement years she continued to help children with learning difficulties develop their reading skills. Rosemary tutored them in her home and taught her last pupil when she was 85 years old.

She was on the Australian Resource Educators Association (AREA) committee for 10 years and when it became Learning Difficulties Australia (LDA) she served as Consultant Coordinator for another 15 years. This involved hours on the telephone at all times of the day and night listening to worried parents seeking help for their children’s education.

Rosemary was named a Paul Harris Fellow by Rotary International; “in appreciation of tangible and significant assistance given for the furtherance of better understanding and friendly relations among peoples of the world.”

This was a very fitting Award.

Tribute by Felicity Yuncken (Rosemary’s daughter)

A donation has been made to the Australian Orchid Trust Fund by the North-East Melbourne Orchid Society.

AOTF: 3546