Sonoma County Orchid Society

Our purpose is to foster the growth and preservation of native and hybrid orchids in Sonoma County and around the world.

The Society is open to hobbyists and professionals, novice to expert, all are welcome. We are here to learn, share and have fun!

General Meetings are held on the second Tuesday of each month with the exception of September (Annual BBQ & Auction) & December (Holiday Dinner). The location for all General Meetings is the Veterans Memorial Building, 1351 Maple Avenue, Santa Rosa (across the street from the Sonoma County Fairgrounds). There is abundant & free parking.

Doors open at 6:30pm with plant sales and skill sessions (if scheduled) starting at 6:45. The meeting ends between 9:00 and 9:30pm.

Members may attend all meetings and guests are always welcome.

Upcoming Meetings & Events:

Growing Orchids Outdoors in the Bay Area – Mary Gerritsen

Tuesday, January 8th – Doors Open at 6:30PM & Meeting Begins at 7:00PM

Mary Gerritsen
Mary Gerritsen

Mary’s talk will cover key information you need to know about growing orchids outside, including microclimates, selecting or creating suitable growing area, cultural tips, how to cope with heat and cold, and a survey of popular orchids that are grown outside year-round in different parts of the San Francisco Bay Area.

Mary Gerritsen fell in love with orchids during her post-doctoral days in the late 70’s in San Diego and has grown them off and on ever since. She worked in the biotechnology industry for many years, developing drugs for autoimmune disease, cardiovascular disease and cancer. Now semi-retired, she works as an independent biotechnology consultant, and in her spare time, travels as much as she can to see orchids in habitat. In the past twelve years she has gone on orchid trips/treks to various parts of the US and Canada, as well as Mexico, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Venezuela, Brazil, Borneo, Western Australia, Thailand, Sulawesi, New Guinea, South Africa, Madagascar and southern and western China. She has also traveled to Germany, Crete, Rhodes, Mallorca, Sicily and Cyprus to photograph the terrestrial orchids.

Mary enjoys writing about orchids and is an author/co-author (with friend and well-known photographer Ron Parsons) of four orchid books; Masdevallias, Gems of the Orchid World, A Compendium of Miniature Orchid Species, A Bay Area Guide to Orchids and their Culture and the about to be published American Orchid Society Guide to Orchids and their Culture. She has also written articles for orchid magazines including Orchids, Orchid Digest and the Orchid Review.

She has a collection of mostly miniature, cool growing species. Mary is a past-president of the San Francisco Orchid Society and Peninsula Orchid Society and currently serves on the board of directors of The Orchid Digest and The Orchid Conservation Alliance.

Speaker ‘s Dinner January 8th at 5 pm at Kirin Restaurant, 2700 Yulupa Ave, Santa Rosa. RSVP to June at by Sunday, January 6th.