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: June 7, 2016 – 7:00 p.m.

June Speaker: Marni Turkel - Show Me the Plant

How many of us have been disappointed when we finally bloom that plant we bought because the picture of the flower was so beautiful? Then it turned out to be a very small flower on a very long spike on an ungainly plant.

“Show Me the Plant” is a presentation that uses photographs of blooming specimen plants as well as close-ups to consider the whole plant for a sense of proportion and relationship and not just the flower in isolation. Marni will be talking about many of her favorite plants and will cover some basic information as well as specific needs for individual plants and strategies for growing specimen plants. This is a chance to see the best of her collection and learn how she grows it.

Marni Turkel (pronounced tur KELL) is a native of the San Francisco Bay Area and has been growing orchids since 1980. She grows in four enclosed greenhouses in Santa Rosa with approximately 1250 sq ft of growing space. Originally, her main interest was in cool-growing miniature species but plenty of larger plants have crept into the collection as well. With the addition of a warm greenhouse in 2015, she grows a wide range of species from warm to cold growers. Marni has been a contributor to Orchids magazine with her series called ‘Well Worth the Space’ and ‘Give It a Rest’. Her articles have been translated into Dutch, German, Portuguese and Swedish for international publication. Photographs of her plants have been feature in articles in noted orchid publications including Orchids Magazine, Orchid Digest, Richardiana, The Orchid Review, and The Australian Orchid Review. For the last few years she has been sharing her photographs and knowledge on OrchidsForum.com.

Starting in 2009, Marni expanded her work with orchids to include propagation of orchids from seed and set up a flasking lab of her own to take the process from start to finish. It has grown rather fast and now has around 5000 flasks on her shelves at any given time. While she does some work for other clients, the business primarily produces and sell flasks of many of the orchids species in her collection. After working for over 43 years as a potter, she has retired from ceramics to pursue orchids full-time.

Marni will also bring plants to sell.

June Skill Session: Mary Gerritsen - “Hang it up” - A hands on demonstration of how to mount orchids, and there will be a Q&A about the culture of mounted orchids.

Upcoming Meetings

  • July 2016: Phyllis Prestia – OCA Tour of Madagascar
  • August 2016: Ron Kaufman (Founding Director of the Orchid Conservation Alliance) Topic: TBD

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 Exposition, held at Lower Fort Mason. 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


2016 San Francisco Fall Antiques Show Opening Night Gala

Please help support the SF Orchid Society by purchasing a raffle ticket.

The SF Antique show has donated 2 tickets to their prestigious Gala on Oct. 26th. There will be one lucky winner who will win 2 passes to the SF Antique Show’s Gala (estimated value $750).

The Story of Orchids - Flowers that defy all expectations

SFOS Officers

Dave Hermeyer, President
Mary Gerritsen, Vice President
Valerie Mountain, Secretary
Jack Ryder, Treasurer

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

Laelia purpurata variety Roxo-Violeta ...

View on Facebook

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.