The New Hampshire
Orchid Society

Conservation Education

New Hampshire Connections

We have a project to track the populations of all types of New Hampshire native orchids over several years. If you have or know of an orchid population near you about which you could collect data, please contact Jean Stefanik. More information about this special project by the New Hampshire Orchid Society can be found here.


Interested in knowing more about rare plants in New Hampshire? The New Hampshire State Park system protects numerous expanses of local habitats.  Check out the Rare Native Plants | Natural Heritage | NH Division of Forests and Lands which has links to state laws regarding rare plants and animals as well as other conservation information. 

The New England Wildflower Society, now called the Native Plant Trust , has several resources for plant identification including Go Botany: Native Plant Trust. Their mission includes rare plant monitoring, education, and invasive plant management.  They manage Native Plant Sanctuaries - Native Plant Trust   as well as  Garden in the Woods - Native Plant Trust  where native orchids are growing,  and are sometimes available for purchase.

The Audubon Society and New Hampshire Audubon Society manages several conservation areas and native orchids can be seen in many of them.   Check out the locations of walking, hiking, and canoe/kayak opportunities in New Hampshire and the surrounding states. Ponemah Bog - NH Audubon, for example is visited seasonally by NHOS members.

The The Nature Conservancy in New Hampshire locations in New Hampshire provide opportunities as well, including the recently created

Manchester Cedar Swamp Preserve | The Nature Conservancy in NH

"The Reading Room" on the Orchid Mall web site has some great information about native North American orchids.  Here you will also find links to CITES web sites and many others related to orchid conservation.

Florida Opportunities

Traveling to Florida in your future? Interested in volunteering some of your time? Be sure to look into the "real" Florida which contains opportunities for exploration including orchids. The private, national and state park system in Florida is extensive and includes a wide variety of habitats and micro-environments. Places in particular worth exploring include  the Everglades National Park (U.S. National Park Service) ( which is the largest, with campgrounds, walking trails, canoe trails, and boardwalks. Check out the mile long boardwalk in Corkscrew Sanctuary which is especially known for its “super ghost orchid” among many other plants and birdlife.

And of course,  don't let a visit to South Florida go by without visiting the Fakahatchee Strand Preserve State Park | Florida State Parks which is adjacent to Big Cypress National Park and the Everglades.    Fakahatchee was made famous by the Susan Orleans book "The Orchid Thief" as well as the Nicholas Cage, Meryl Streep, Chris Cooper movie "Adaptation". Members of the NH Orchid Society travel to Florida, check with Jean Stefanik if such an adventure sparks your interest - she's spent a fair amount of time volunteering and traveling there.

Conservation Programs and Grant Opportunities

TheThe American Orchid Society ( is located on the grounds of the Fairchild Tropical Botanic Gardens in Coral Gables, Florida. Check out their gardens and their conservation and education programs Orchid Conservation (  including a grant program.

The Native Orchid Conference | Membership | Native Orchid Conservation  began over 2 decades ago bringing together native orchid enthusiasts.  Each year they gather in different locations in North America, enjoying lectures and field trips. In 2015, the gathering visited the White Mountains of New Hampshire to view lady slippers and other more rare species.   Occasionally sponsoring Zoom sessions,  their journal is exceptional.   Case Grants are awarded annually to aspiring orchid researchers .

One of the most impressive orchid conservation grant programs is the  Funded Conservation Projects – San Diego County Orchid Society (  which raises funds annually and has awarded over $265,000 to support projects in 24 different countries.

Conservation Projects in Ecuador

Our society began supporting El Pahuma Orchid Reserve through the CEIBA Foundation for Tropical Conservation at our 2004 show where over $1000 was raised.  The New Hampshire Orchid Society added to this amount earmarked to purchase 750 acres of pristine cloud forest adjacent to the current 1500 acres of El Pahuma.  Several other New England area societies also contributed.  For more information about El Pahuma and the CEIBA Foundation contact Ceiba Foundation for Tropical Conservation.

NHOS Education and Conservation Chairperson Jean Stefanik traveled to Ecuador to volunteer at El Pahuma in September and October 2004.  During her volunteer experience she lived with the Ecuadorian family, hiked steep trails with wild orchids in abundance to cascading waterfalls, was surrounded by orchids, bromeliads and hummingbirds in the gardens, and visited other local orchid and butterfly sanctuaries in the area.  In addition to connecting with members of the Quito Orchid Society, Jean volunteered at the Home - Quito Botanical Garden ( including participating in rescue of orchids doomed by road construction.

One of the "must see" highlights of visiting Ecuador is Ecuagenera located in Gualaceo high in the southern Andes.  This orchid plantation is home to 1.5 million plants, most of which include the majority of the 3000 species native to Ecuador.  Ecuagenera's mission includes conservation and education in action, not just words.   Ecuagenera has locations throughout Ecuador,  and more recently in the US  Ecuagenera USA Corp. Plants of the World Ecuagenera also organizes small group tours to orchid sites throughout Ecuador – prepare for orchid overload!

Worldwide Opportunities

Please be sure to visit the Andes to Amazon Botany Project to read about the many projects in Peru, including diversity and ecology of orchids (Orchidaceae) in the Andes-Amazon region of Southeastern Peru.

Several conservation organizations provide short term eco-tourism opportunities.  One of the most well known is Homepage | (Dev) Earthwatch, based in Massachusetts.  Your contributions and volunteer work support field research scientists from around the world, and a large portion may even be tax deductible.  Contact Jean Stefanik who has participated in two expeditions for firsthand information.

The Orchid Conservation Alliance - Orchid Conservation Alliance  not only raises money for orchid conservation,  but also has created reserves, and sponsors small group eco-travel to orchid habitats.

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