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: September 5, 2017 – 7:00 p.m.

September Speaker: Robert Pemberton, topic “Biotic resource needs of orchid pollinators"

Dr. Bob Pemberton is a retired research entomologist formerly with the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service. As a foreign explorer, he traveled the world searching for the natural enemies of invasive plants and insects that were devastating natural environments. He began studying orchids and their pollinators when an orchid bee from Central America appeared on his front porch in Fort Lauderdale. Bob has studied the pollination ecology of species of Cyrtopodium in Florida, Cypripedium in Sichuan, China and Phragmipedium in the Andes Mountains of Ecuador. He lives in Atlanta with his wife Joanne and dog.

Dr. Pemberton’s talk is on “Biotic resource needs of orchid pollinators.”

Orchid pollinators can have highly varied life histories with complex biotic resource requirements, about which we have limited knowledge. Because thousands of orchid species offer no rewards, their pollinators must obtain pollen and nectar from other plants. Many moth and butterfly pollinators require essential larval host plants. Some orchid pollinators are insect predators and parasitoids with specific prey types such as aphids and even subterranean scarab larvae. Orchid bees, the only pollinators of about 700 neotropical orchids, must have particular plant chemicals for their reproduction. Loss of critical biotic resources can cause the loss of orchid pollinators or reduce their abundance and effectiveness.

Skills Session: begins at 7:00 p.m.
Debra Atwood - Taking your orchids from summer into fall - a time for adjustments

Upcoming Meetings

  • September 2017: Robert Pemberton – Biotic resource needs of orchid pollinators
  • October 2017: Marni Turkel – Topic TBD
  • November 2017: Jeff Tyler – Orchid foliage and more
  • December 2017: Holiday Party
  • January 2018: TBD
  • February 2018: Ken Jacobsen – Orchid Travels in Peru
  • May 2018: Brandon Tam – Orchids at Huntington Gardens
  • June 2018: Dean Hung – The Orchid Hunters

San Francisco Orchid Society Newsletters

San Francisco Orchid Society Membership (New Members and Renewals)

Membership Cost

(tax deductible)
$25/year (with Email Newsletter Option)
$45/year (with USPS Mail Newsletter Option)

How to Apply and Pay

You can apply and pay two ways:

Electronically via PayPal (PayPal account is not required)

For both new members and renewals, please complete our online member application, and then submit your payment with a debit or credit card via PayPal.

With a Check and Printed Application

Please print & complete our membership application and send it with a check (made payable to: SFOS) and for the appropriate amount to:

SFOS Memberships
P.O. Box 27145
San Francisco, CA 94127

SFOS Member Handbook

SFOS By-Laws

Members can volunteer to help the society prepare for the Annual Pacific Orchid and Garden Exposition, 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 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

2017 Pacific Orchid and Garden Exposition

Senator Scott Wiener and Mayor Ed Lee give recognition to the San Francisco Orchid Society at the 65th Annual Pacific Orchid and Garden Exposition

(left to right, SFOS President Gary Turner, Senator Scott Wiener, Vice President Mary Gerritsen, Promotional Director Frances Larose)

SFOS Officers

Ron Norris, President
Jeff Harris, Vice President
Erik Sayle, Secretary
Mary Gerritsen, Treasurer (CFO)

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

Support Businesses
That Support the SFOS

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

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.