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Issue 71
September 2013

The Conservatory Chronicles
A monthly newsletter for our growing community. 



Butterflies & Blooms Extension Announcement

We delayed this month's enews so we could make a very special announcement: Butterflies & Blooms, our most beloved and popular exhibit in years, will now be extended through March 16, 2014, rather than closing on October 20, 2013, giving us all a few more months to enjoy and learn about these gorgeous winged beauties!


Our members and visitors have spoken...and we've heard you. We're extending this magical exhibit over the holiday months, so that you may visit, revisit and bring guests to the Conservatory to watch these beautiful creatures emerge from their chrysalises, take flight for the first time, alight on your shoulders and pollinate the hundreds of flowers blooming in our Special Exhibits gallery. 


Like the butterflies, our living museum is a place of constant transformation. The air, the light, the plants...everything is always in a dynamic state of growth. We encourage you to visit us and the butterflies again in the coming months, since your experience will never be the same twice!


On Thursday, October 3, the entertaining and fascinating Amy Stewart will be here to present, discuss and sign her latest New York Times bestseller, The Drunken Botanist. Get your tickets today for this fun evening - featuring free botanical cocktails!


As always, we thank you for your support of the Conservatory of Flowers.


Eric Andersen, Director

Amy Stewart Returns! Drunken Botanist Night at the COF
Thursday, October 3rd, 7-9pm 
Purchase tickets HERE. ($40 General Admission, $35 COF Members)
OR click HERE for this event plus the intimate 6-7pm COF tour with Amy, only 5 slots remaining! ($100 General Admission, $75 COF Members)
The Drunken Botanist by Amy Stewart

Join us to celebrate Amy Stewart's brilliant bestselling book, The Drunken Botanist, with an intoxicating evening of botanical cocktails, tips for creating your own "cocktail garden," and a reading and book signing with Amy herself.   


Amanda Victoria of Lillet and Mark Stoddard of Hendrick's Gin will be on hand to wet your whistle with a complimentary botanical cocktail and punch for this event!

Learn about the nationwide resurgence in using fruits, roots, stems, leaves and seeds to make tinctures and bitters, sangrias and herbal concoctions of all varieties, and chart your own course for becoming a mad botanical scientist behind the bar! 

Attention shutterbugs: professional instruction followed by rare after-hours photo time in the Conservatory!

Tuesday, October 15, 2-5pm

Purchase tickets HERE  ($75 General Admission, $65 COF Members)

Photo by John B. Caddell
Photo by John B. Caddell

This workshop would make a wonderful gift for yourself, or someone special who loves to photograph plants and flowers...


The Bokeh (BOH-kay) photographic technique gets its name from the Japanese word boke, meaning "to blur." The technique involves keeping the central object or objects of your photograph in sharp focus while blurring other objects, creating dazzling circles of light in the background. 


Learn how to incorporate this great technique - as well as other techniques and tricks - into your own flower photography, at this intimate and informative afternoon workshop with professional photographer John B. Caddell.


In addition to learning about Bokeh and other techniques, you will also have a chance to try out your new knowledge in one of the most gorgeous "photo-ops" in the world - the Conservatory!


Quiet Lightning + Litquake: "The Greenhouse Effect"
Monday, October 14th, 7:30pm (doors at 7:00pm)
Admission at door only, $5 - $10 sliding scale
Quiet Lightning at the COF
On October 14th, Quiet Lightning returns for their final 2013 evening of readings at the Conservatory, and for this night they've teamed up with their friends at Litquake. The ever-growing group puts on a literary show each month, accepting submissions of all forms of writing and assembling.

Performers are chosen via a blind selection process and rotating curators, and the upshot is a literary "mixed tape" that is performed without introductions or banter, and published in a book that comes with the price of admission. 

They'll want to come back tomorrow. Click HERE to join today!
Conservatory Membership

Ornament Terrarium Workshop with Brandi Chalker
Wednesday, November 13th, 2-4pm 
Purchase tickets HERE.  ($30 General Admission, $25 COF Members)
Terrarium Ornament by Brandi Chalker
Time for some holiday fun - with a distinctly Californian botanical twist of course - at the Conservatory! 
Join us as Brandi Chalker of Sunshine & Succulents leads us in a succulent mini-terrarium ornament workshop. 
Each participant will receive 2-3 glass ornaments to fill with tiny, lovely succulents, and take home to keep. Don't miss this fun and inspiring afternoon!
What's in Bloom?  Aliceara Hilo Ablaze, or "Hilo Gold"
Aliceara Hilo Ablaze
Aliceara Hilo Ablaze in the Conservatory


Location in the Conservatory: In the Highlands Gallery. 


Aliceara Hilo Ablaze 'Hilo Gold' is a great example of how orchids can be crossed to create a exceptional hybrid. This plant contains genes from Oncidium, Miltonia, and Brassia species. This creates a plant that is very easy to grow and flower, tolerant of a wide range in temperatures, has very large flowers, is fragrant, and has beautiful markings. The color is a striking apricot with chocolate barring. The lip develops an intense red-orange flush over a yellow background.


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

Announcing a NEW "Just Add Water" collaboration with Sloat Garden Center
Add some flair to your holiday table this year, at our "make-and-take" centerpiece workshop
Wednesday, November 20, 2-4pm
Purchase tickets HERE.  ($50 General Admission, $40 COF Members)
Centerpiece by Jennie Strobel
Centerpiece by Jennie Strobel


Spend a fun and crafty afternoon at the Conservatory making a dramatic centerpiece for your holiday (or everyday!) table, at our Holiday Centerpiece-Making Workshop led by Jennie Strobel of Sloat Garden Centers.   


These unique, non-traditional centerpieces featuring succulents and tillandsias will last for months with proper care. Sloat will provide the base, soil, plants and supplies needed to create your masterpiece. Just bring your holiday spirit! 


Event co-sponsored by:
Sloat Garden Center logo  

Visit Us!

Hours: Tuesday - Sunday: 10am - 4:30pm (last entry is at 4:00pm)

Please note that on Sundays and holidays,
Golden Gate Park closes many of its roads to all vehicle traffic.

Admission: $8.00 for Adults; $5.00 for Youth; 12-17, Seniors age 65 & over, and College Students with ID; $2.00 for Children 5-11; Free for Children 4 and under
Discounts available to SF City and County residents with proof of residency. 
The Conservatory is free to all visitors on the first Tuesday of every month.
RPD logo
Accessibility: The Conservatory of Flowers is wheelchair accessible for both motorized and non motorized chairs. Handicap permit parking is located at the east side of the building and also on JFK Drive in front of the Conservatory. 
Strollers are not allowed in the Conservatory.

Information line: 415-831-2090