Welcome to the San Francisco Orchid Society

Welcome to the San Francisco Orchid Society web site. We are lucky to reside in one of the best parts of the country for the cultivation of orchids in the home, greenhouse, and garden. It is our hope that our site, our meetings, and our members will spark your enthusiasm to give this most satisfying hobby a try!

San Francisco Orchid Society Meetings

The San Francisco Orchid Society meets on the first Tuesday of every month.

Located at San Francisco County Fair Building (Hall of Flowers), adjacent to the San Francisco Botanical Garden at Strybing Arboretum (at Ninth Avenue and Lincoln Way, San Francisco).

Plants submitted for American Orchid Society Judging must be entered between 6:30 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. The meeting will start at 7:30 p.m.

Contact SFOS at info@orchidsanfrancisco.org

Next Meeting: Tuesday, October 2, 2018 – 7:00 p.m.

October Speaker: Dr. Kay Klausing

Topic: Orchid Viruses: Practical Aspects of Dealing with Orchid Viruses

Dr. Kay Klausing with daughter Izzy

Dr. Klausing was born in Germany and didn’t start growing orchids until he was in college. The University of Konstanz where he received his Master and PhD in Molecular Genetics, had a lone Dendrobium kingianum specimen covering 2 huge baskets that had developed thousands of keikis due to being kept too warm. The gardener gave him a few keikis, and in so doing hooked him on orchids. His enthusiasm also spread to his friends and after a few years most of them were growing divisions of Den. kingianums (and Kay still has the original division of that plant). In 1990 he moved to the US to do his postdoctoral work at UCSD and he gave his collection to his Father, who also got infected with the dreaded orchid virus (much to his mom’s dismay). One of the first things he bought in the US (before he even owned car) was an orchid at an orchid show by the Palomar Orchid Society. Since then his orchid collection has swelled to about 1000 plants with an emphasis on the Cattleya alliance – almost exclusively species. He grows plants in three greenhouses (cool, intermediate and warm) and one outdoor area (rupicolous Laelias) in the San Diego area.

Kay was a member of the German Orchids Society for many years and is a long-term member of the AOS and currently serves on the board of their conservation committee. He is a member of the San Diego County Orchid Society, which he now serves as president.

How to test for viruses

Orchid Viruses:  Practical Aspects of Dealing with Orchid Viruses

During his Masters and PhD work, Kay used a virus as a model system for his genetic research and, as such, he has had a long interest in and fascination with viruses. In his presentation he will give a brief introduction to orchid viruses, but will focus mainly on the practical aspects from the point of growing orchids. He will demonstrate on how to perform tests, share the test results for his collection and provide tips on how to prevent the spread of virus in a collection.


Skills Session at 7:00 pm: October 2nd skill session will feature virus testing by Kay Klausing. Kay will conduct tests and go over basic techniques and disinfection. Members are encouraged to bring in a sample of suspected orchid virus infected foliage (ideally in a ziplock bag), and we will test them as time permits.

Upcoming Meetings

  • Oct 2018: Kay Klausing – Orchid viruses
  • Nov 2018: Harold Koopowitz – Breeding The New Miniature Slipper Orchids
  • Dec 2018: Holiday Party
  • Jan 2019: TBA
  • Feb 2019: Stig Dalstrom – Paphiopedilums of Bhutan
  • Mar 2019: Santiago Ramirez – Orchids and Bees

San Francisco Orchid Society Membership (New Members and Renewals)

Membership Cost

(tax deductible)

  • $25/year (Standard Individual Membership)
  • $40/year (Household Membership)

How to Apply and Pay

For both new members and renewals, please complete our online member application through Member Planet.

You will need to create a basic account with Member Planet to apply to the SFOS. This is a new process to simplify tracking of our membership dues payments and roster information.

If you want help with this new process, we can assist you at the membership table at the monthly SFOS meetings.

If you cannot use the online process, then please go ahead and mail a check with your contact information to:

SFOS Membership
P.O. Box 27145
San Francisco, CA 94127-0145

SFOS Member Handbook

SFOS By-Laws

Members can volunteer to help the society prepare for the Annual Pacific Orchid Exposition (POE), held at the Hall of Flowers (County Fair Building) in Golden Gate Park. The creativity and enthusiasm of our members help make the show a success. Join now and see how you can get started.

San Francisco Orchid Society Newsletters

San Francisco Orchid Society Library

Literature is available for SFOS members on orchid-related topics at each month’s meetings. For a list of what’s available, please download a copy of our book list below.

—SFOS Librarian Chuck Chan

SFOS Officers

Jeff Harris, President
Erik Sayle, Vice President
Vacant, Secretary
Faye Rabino, Treasurer (CFO)

For any SFOS related questions, contact info@orchidsanfrancisco.org.

Support Businesses
That Support the SFOS

Check out our new POE sponsors!

The San Francisco Orchid Society wishes to thank the following sponsors for their major, ongoing support. Their participation has helped make our show an international event. We encourage you to visit their site.

International Orchid Tours Available

3 weeks ago

San Francisco Orchid Society
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Since the turn of the millennium, the SFOS has donated over $50,000 in support of local horticultural education and botanical gardens, botanical research, and international conservation efforts.  Many of the organizations the SFOS support include Orchid Conservation Alliance, the Helen Crocker Russell Library of Horticulture, SF Botanical Garden, UC Berkeley Botanical Gardens, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo Horticulture Department, the Conservatory of Flowers in Golden Gate Park and many more.