The Conservatory Chronicles

Issue 101
April 2016
Fiesta! Join us "under glass" amid the lushly flowering beauty of San Francisco's most  enchanting, historic venue for a tropical night of special cuisine and specialty cocktails. Celebrate Cinco de Mayo in the magical ambiance of the Conservatory of Flowers -- after sunset!

Explore our jungle of plants and orchids and be the first to view the
surprising world of water hoarding plants at our new show:

Hungry? Fog Cutter is passing hors d'oeuvres. La Bonne is catering irresistible appetizers. Nopalito's doing their famous totopos con chile (Olé!) and Grace Street and 49 Square are dishing up savory small plates.
Fiesta! Dance to the Mariachi music of the Reyna y su Trio. Come early and stay late! The fiesta continues with our first-ever After Party starring DJ Deft.
Don't miss out.
Under the Spell of Jeff Moore
Join us on May 16th at 6pm as Jeff Moore, author of
Under the Spell of Succulents,
shares with us his tales of succulents.

Owner of Solano Succulents in Southern California, Jeff is best known for his succulent seascapes that he has created for Sea World, the Philadelphia Flower Show and others.

Jeff will share spectacular photos from his book as well as how he went from being a casual succulent collector to nursery owner.  He'll also discuss his upcoming book on aloes and agaves. 

Cost: Members $10, General $15. Registration includes admission to the Conservatory and our new succulent exhibit.

Become a Member!
Meet Horticultural Volunteer Stephanie Kantorski 
Step and Lycopodium
Steph with her favorite Lycopodium growing in the vestibule garden wall

Stephanie Kantorski "Steph" grew up in New York apartments, pretty much devoid of greenery and flowers. Moving to San Francisco nine years ago, she got "really, really" into plants.

In 2013 she discovered the Conservatory's docent training program where she learned so much about plants, but still wanted to know more.

Currently,  Steph can be found at the Conservatory on Mondays, actively working with our nursery specialists and learning, learning, learning. She focuses on our three vertical garden walls; one in the sunny vestibule and two in the shady Lowland Gallery. Each garden has its own particular challenges and Steph is constantly tweaking the plantings to insure they are eye catching and educational for our visitors.

When asked what she would say to anyone considering becoming a volunteer at the Conservatory, Steph enthusiastically advised, "Definitely do it! Plunge yourself into a completely different environment than you can find anywhere else in the City!"

Would you like to volunteer at the Conservatory? Contact Volunteer Director Erika Frank,, for more information.  
What's in Bloom...
      EEEEWWW ...What's that smell???
Bulbophyllum phyleonopis
Bulbophyllum phalaenopsis, currently blooming in the Aquatics Gallery, holds the dubious distinction of being one of the 9 worst smelling flowers in the world!

Definitely not your run of the mill orchid; this hairy, pinkish red flower from New Guinea smells like rotting meat to allure pollinator flies.

Follow your nose...this is one bloom you don't want to miss!

Check out our What's in Bloom page to see what else is blooming!