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Issue 95
October 2015

The Conservatory Chronicles
A monthly newsletter for our growing community. 
Join us for a Special After-Hours Concert on Friday, December 4th
A night of local folk/rock/psych with Heron Oblivion and Extra Classic
Heron Oblivion Concert December 4
Heron Oblivion


Click here for tickets

($22 online, $25 door)

Friday, December 4, 6:30pm - 10:30pm


The Conservatory presents a fantastic evening of live music with newly-signed Sub Pop recording artists Heron Oblivion and Nopal Records recording artists Extra Classic.  


Rachel White of Sub Pop describes Heron Oblivion as "a mesmeric compilation of English folk rock and earthy West Coast psychedelia." The band features the lovely and ethereal Meg Baird on drums and vocals. Baird's solo album "Don't Weigh Down the Light" was released in June of 2015 on Chicago's Drag City label. SF's beloved Extra Classic is anchored by songwriting couple Alex and Adrianne deLanda, whose mutual love of vintage Jamaican dub and psychedelic rock inspired the highly dance-able group's formation back in 2011.   


This show is ALL AGES. Beer, wine and cocktails will be available for purchase to 21+ guests with I.D. wristband. Doors open and DJ starts at 6:30pm, Extra Classic opens at 8pm. The main greenhouse will be open until 9pm. 

Andrew Roth recreates sounds of the 1915 Pan-Pacific 
Andrew Roth 
Audio designer Andrew Roth
Acclaimed sound designer Andrew Roth is a valuable member of our special exhibits team. He creates the sounds that bring our themes to life. Roth led our visitors on a roller coaster ride at Ocean Beach with his "soundscape" for our 2011 Playland exhibit, and into the streets and saloons of Gold Rush-era San Francisco for our 2012 Boomtown exhibit.

Now Roth is back at work, this time blending period sounds from San Francisco's audio-centric 1915 World's Fair for the Conservatory's upcoming special exhibit, Garden Railway: 1915 Pan-Pacific.

We asked Roth to describe some of the sounds we can expect to hear in this exhibit's mix:

"You will hear 1915 period cars, streetcars, biplanes, racecars, parades and of course the 1/3 scale steam engine that ferried visitors around the fair. There will be an operating Western Electric candlestick phone in the exhibit, through which you will hear a re-creation of the famous first transcontinental phone call between Alexander Graham Bell and Thomas Watson. Phone listeners will also hear a vintage recording that was played over the line to Thomas Edison from his offices in West Orange, New Jersey.

Vintage musical recordings will play out of a reproduction of a 1915 gramophone, along with new recordings of songs that were specifically written for or played at the 1915 PPIE. These will include big band and choral pieces along with ragtime and international music."
2015 Giving Tuesday
Help us make this year's Giving Tuesday campaign a success!


DONATE on Tuesday, December 1st


Make a TRIBUTE gift in honor or in memory of a loved one on December 1st


Be a MATCHING ANGEL: agree to match all donations received on December 1st by 10%, 50% or 100%


For more information, or to volunteer to be a MATCHING ANGEL, contact Development Director Jane Scurich at or 415-831-2093.


"Garden Railway: 1915 Pan-Pacific" opens Thursday, November 12

The trains are back!  

Garden Railway exhibit artwork

All aboard...for a trip back in time! The Conservatory of Flowers presents Garden Railway: 1915 Pan-Pacific, an all-new garden railway display celebrating the centennial of San Francisco's 1915 Pan-Pacific International Exposition.

In an enchanting display landscaped with hundreds of dwarf plants and several water features, model trains will meander through the festive PPIE fairgrounds, zipping past whimsical recreations of the fair's most dazzling monuments and amusements, including the Tower of Jewels, Palace of Fine Arts and more. Interpretive signs, memorabilia and interactive activities throughout help visitors to understand the colorful history of the grand fair that signaled San Francisco's recovery from the 1906 earthquake. Don't miss this fun and educational exhibit!


Some nice press for La Rose des Vents
a Rose des Vents
La Rose des Vents

The whimsical sculpture in Conservatory Valley by artist Jean-Michel Othoniel, La Rose des Vents, has garnered some attention in the press:



SF Weekly


Curbed SF


The 11 foot-tall rotating sculpture will remain in Conservatory Valley through the spring of 2016.

What's in Bloom?  Vireya Rhododendrons
Vireya Rhododendrons

The gorgeous pink and yellow blooms shown at left are currently on display on the table by the curved bench in Potted Plants.  


Vireyas grow in cool mountainous regions of Southeast Asia, either as epiphytes in the tall trees of the cloud forest, or on open ground in shrubberies.  


Many Rhododendrons make poisonous nectar, which repels herbivores but can also harm humans who consume honey made with the nectar.  


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