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Issue 78
April 2014
The Conservatory Chronicles
A monthly newsletter for our growing community. 



Lau Hodges on Gala night
Exhibits Director Lau Hodges
looking "Super Fly" on Gala night!

April has been an incredibly rewarding (and busy!) month here at the Conservatory. Our April 10 Dangerous Beauty Gala raised thousands of dollars to benefit our educational program. We offer our most heartfelt THANKS to the over 200 of you who attended or donated to this year's Gala. Guests enjoyed a wonderful night of music, food and cocktails, and were treated to a special sneak preview of our "dangerous" new Chomp! exhibit. 
On Friday, April 11, the Conservatory's deadliest and most "alluring" special exhibit yet opened to the public: Chomp! They Came from the Swamp is a boggy wonderland filled with Venus fly traps, sundews, giant pitcher plants, and numerous other meat-eating beauties. Colorful signage and gigantic models of Venus fly traps, Sarracenias and Cephalotus compliment the unparalleled variety of living carnivores provided by our exhibit partners over at California Carnivores. Stop by this week to view this fascinating display of carnivorous plants!
As always, we thank you for supporting the Conservatory of Flowers. 


Eric Andersen, Director

The 2014 Dangerous Beauty Gala: Oh What a Night!


The Conservatory wishes to thank the members of this year's Gala committee, whose tireless efforts led to a dazzling and enchanting party and raised thousands of dollars for the Conservatory. We can't thank you enough!  *Members not pictured include: Terry Dolan, Natasha Hopkinson, Eva Monroe, Murphy Robins, Judith Taylor, Barbara Traisman, and Trish Turner-McConnell.
Dangerous Beauty Gala Committee members (left to right): Steven Brown, Betty Packard, Louisa Heer, Pat Hanson-Thomson, Bruce Rogers, Chairwoman Martha Woollomes, Terry Nevin, Donna Ellis, COF Development Director Jane Scurich, Ann Colvin. 
Photo by Claudine Gossett, Drew Altizer Photography

Now showing: Chomp! They Came from the Swamp

Comp! collage


And now, a word about our partner...
What (or who) is California Carnivores?
Peter D'Amato: California Carnivores' founder and author of The Savage Garden. Photo by Brant Ward, SF Chronicle
It's not every day that you meet someone who has spent over 40 years studying and propagating carnivorous plants. But Peter D'Amato has done just that, and the incredible and lush diversity of our Chomp! carnivorous plants exhibit would not be possible without him.

Peter opened the California Carnivores nursery in Sebastopol back in 1989, and it is now the largest carnivorous plant shop in the US. 

Peter, along with general manager Damon Collingsworth and the rest of the C.C. staff, consulted for months with the Conservatory's exhibits staff prior to the opening of Chomp!, and they contributed helping hands, expertise and a tremendous collection of plants to Chomp!  Thanks Peter, and thanks to everyone at California Carnivores

Carnivorous Plant Terrarium Workshop at SFBG
Saturday, April 26, 1-5pm. SPECIAL OFFER: Conservatory members may purchase tickets at the SFBG members' discounted rate for this event!
SFBG Carnivorous Terrarium Workshop Our neighbors at the San Francisco Botanical Garden here in Golden Gate Park are getting into the carnivorous spirit! They're hosting a California Native Carnivorous Plant Terrarium Workshop this Saturday, April 26 from 1 to 5pm. And they've generously offered current Conservatory of Flowers members the chance to purchase tickets at the SFBG members' discounted rate of $50 per terrarium. 

Create a miniature garden full of insect-eating plants, perfect for your kitchen or outdoor patio. 

The SFBG will have a variety of colorful sundews, Venus fly traps, and even California's own native pitcher plant (Darlingtonia californica) available, so you can create the ferocious terrarium of your dreams! 

All materials included. This is a family friendly class. *Class fee is per terrarium, not per person. Join the SFBG for this great afternoon workshop!
What's in Bloom? Vireya Rhododendron
Don't drink the honey!...
Vireya Rhododendron
Vireya Rhododendron


Location in the Conservatory:

Highlands Gallery


There are over 300 Vireya species, comprising approximately one third of all Rhododendrons. Other plants in the Ericaceae family are azaleas, blueberries, and cranberries.   
Many Rhododendrons make poisonous nectar. The poison helps keep herbivorous predators away, but is harmful to humans who consume honey made with the nectar.



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


Chomp! They Came from the Swamp is waiting for you...


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