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The Conservatory of Flowers: A Historic Greenhouse in the 21st Century

September 20, 2023 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
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Date: Wednesday, September 20, 2023
Time: Conservatory Tours 6:00 – 6:50pm
Presentation: 7:00- 8:00pm
Location: Orchid Pavilion, Conservatory of Flowers
Price: $20 general / Free for members

To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the reopening of the Conservatory of Flowers, which took place on September 20, 2003, local historian and author Christopher Pollock will share the storied history of the greenhouse from its concept as part of the Golden Gate Park master plan, initial construction, and tracing through the many pivotal, as well as interesting incidental, events during its 145-year history.

Highlights of Christopher’s presentation include the greenhouse surviving a devastating fire and later record storm winds, an impostor greenhouse, the site of ghosts in a Hollywood movie, introduction of cockroach-loving geckos, and the as a short-term accommodation to a crocodile and snapping turtles.

Attendees will have exclusive access to the Conservatory of Flowers and the ability to engage with our education and horticultural staff from 6:00 – 6:50 pm. The presentation begins in our Orchid Pavilion at 7:00 pm. Tickets are non-refundable and non-transferable.

About Christopher Pollock

Christopher has been the Historian in Residence for the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department, its first, since 2016. His work has included documenting histories of all the department’s 220 properties. Leading up to this position he wrote the book San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park: A Thousand and Seventeen Acres of Stories, which was first published in 2001. After a major revision and additions, it was re-released in 2020 for the park’s 150 anniversary. His newest publication, San Francisco Parks, launches in August 2023.


September 20, 2023
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm