Blog May 2013

Healing Plants Around the World (May 18 - September 8 )

Posted On: May 24, 2013

 The New York Botanical Garden


Healing Plants Around the World

Featuring the Italian Renaissance Garden

May 18 - September 8

Discover how cultures around the world rely on plants for everything from medicine to cosmetics. Embark on a journey of the senses through a stunning re-creation of an Italian Renaissance garden and interactive stations highlighting the rejuvenating and healing powers of tea, cacao, and tropical juices. Explore a fascinating presentation of rare books and manuscripts known as herbals and enjoy a poetry walk, weekend Renaissance music & dance performances, hands-on science adventures for kids, and more!


Wild Medicine Encounters: Tea, Chocolate, and Tropical    Juices

In the Haupt Conservatory daily

See, smell, and taste the rejuvenating and healing powers of tea, cacao,    and tropical juices through interactive demonstrations and samplings. These    showcases will provide insights to the historical and cultural importance    of these plants throughout the world.

Wild Medicine Film Screening

May 18 - June 7     Weekends and Monday Holidays, 11:30 a.m., 12, 2, & 4 p.m. Ross Hall     *Exceptions occur on May 18, June 1, 9, 16, and September 7     Weekdays, Ross Hall, 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.     June 8 - September 8     Ongoing on Weekdays and Weekends, Orchid Rotunda

This 15-minute introductory film narrated by Sigourney Weaver helps set    the tone for your visit, celebrating the beauty of the real Garden of Padua    while highlighting the importance of healing plants and the work of Garden    scientists.

Tour Wild Medicine in the Haupt Conservatory

Weekends & Monday holidays, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.     Weekdays, 11 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Guides throughout the exhibition help bring the stories of Wild    Medicine to life and guide your experience. Learn about featured    medicinal plants and their cultural significance, the origin of medicinal    gardens, and more.

Family Adventures

Naturally    Curious Weekdays, 1:30 - 5:30 p.m.; Weekends plus Holiday Mondays, 10 a.m. -    5:30 p.m.     In the Everett Children's Adventure Garden, adventure abounds for kids of    all ages with art and science activities such as mixing paints and creating    science notebooks. Kids will discover their inner scientists and ask    questions about the world. Each child will practice problem-solving skills    before setting off on an adventure to find medicinal plants. In the    tradition of the Renaissance, students will also use an album    amicorum, or "book of memories," to record any plant observations or    descriptions that they make during their visit.

Commedia Dell' Arte for Children Memorial Day Weekend: May 25 - 27; Independence Day Weekend: July 4 -    7;     Labor Day Weekend: August 31 - September 2 from 12 - 4 p.m.     Families can experience life in the Renaissance through these fun and    festive commedia dell'arte performances, presented by The New York Baroque    Dance Company. Arlequino, Mezzetino and a court Lady and Cavalier will    delight the audience with musical pantomime. The dancers will speak briefly    about the commedia style and the musician will talk about Renaissance    instruments. Children can learn a Renaissance branle, very popular in its    day, known as "The Washerwoman."

Music & Dance of the Italian Renaissance

Saturdays and Sundays, 1 & 3 p.m., in the Ross Hall     *Exceptions occur on May 18, June 16, & September 7 - performances at 3    p.m. only; performance location will vary on June 1 and 9; select    performances to include poetry readings

Enjoy a rich repertoire of the music and dance of the Italian    Renaissance period as presented by members of Early Music New    York-Frederick Renz, Director with members of the New York Historical Dance    Company. Performers wear costumes and play historical instruments to    reproduce the sights and sounds of this period. Learn about the music and    instruments compared to their modern counterparts. On select performance    days, immerse yourself in the arts as acclaimed poets read translations of    16th-century romantic and botanically inspired works, arranged in    collaboration with the Poetry Society of America.

Poetry of the Italian Renaissance

Select Saturdays in the Ross Hall

Poetry comes to life during these dramatic readings, presented in    conjunction with the Music & Dance of the Italian Renaissance    performances. Immerse yourself in the arts as acclaimed poets read    translations of 16th-century romantic and botanically inspired works,    arranged in collaboration with the Poetry Society of America.

  • June 22: 1 p.m. - poet TBD & 3 p.m. with Elizabeth    Alexander, presidential inaugural poet
  • July 27: 1 p.m. - poet TBD & 3    p.m. with Rafael Campo, physician-poet and author of The Healing Art, A      Doctor's Black Bag of Poetry
  •   September 7: 3 p.m. only with    Linda Gregerson, Renaissance scholar, author of The Woman Who and      classically trained actor

Home Gardening Demonstrations

2 p.m.

Throughout the summer, select weekend demonstrations will offer    gardening instruction on topics that touch on the exhibition's themes. For    other weekend themes, click    here.

Herbal Healing Gardens May 18 & 19 in the Perennial Garden     June 29 & 30 in the Home Gardening Center     Gardens are sanctuaries. They not only provide us with a retreat from the    world but they also supply us with many soothing remedies. Join Gardener    for Public Education, Sonia Uyterhoeven, as she discusses how to design    your own little haven and how to grow healing herbs and fragrant plants    that will calm your tired nerves.

Herbal Delights July 6 & 7 in the Home Gardening Center     There are versatile arrays of herbs that you can grow in your garden to    spice up your life. Join Gardener for Public Education, Sonia Uyterhoeven,    as she explores how these tantalizing herbs can be used to make herbal    butters, pesto, tasty vinegars, and soothing teas.

Herbal Vinegars & Teas August 31, September 1 & 2 in the Perennial Garden     There are versatile arrays of herbs that you can grow in your garden to add    flavor to your flair. Join Gardener for Public Education, Sonia    Uyterhoeven, as she explores how herbs can be used to make tasty vinegars    and soothing teas.

Annual Science Open House

Behind-the-Scenes Tours     Saturday, June 1 & Sunday, June 2 William and Lynda Steere Herbarium     Self-guided tours begin at 11 a.m.; last entry at 2 p.m. Meet at the Ross Gallery Pfizer Plant Research Laboratory     Guided tours at 11, 11:30 a.m., 12, 12:30, 1, 1:30, 2, 2:30, 3 p.m. (space    is limited; first-come, first-served) Meet at the Pfizer Lab entrance

Tour the William and Lynda Steere    Herbarium, the largest herbarium in the Western Hemisphere, and speak with    the professional staff who curate, study, and care for the priceless    biological heritage it contains. See a sampling of the 7.3 million    herbarium specimens, dating from the 18th century to the present, which    document fungal and plant diversity from all over Earth. Tour the    world-renowned Pfizer Plant Research Laboratory, home of the Lewis B. and    Dorothy Cullman Program for Molecular Systematics, and discuss with Garden    scientists their roles in discovering and understanding the diversity of    plants we see around us, including some with application for human health.    Laboratory research - along with DNA collections, liquid-preserved    collections, and other materials - allow for the study of plants at their    most essential levels.

Healing Through Plant    Medicines and Foods: What We Can Learn from Different    Cultures Saturday, June 1, 1 p.m.

Dr. Ina Vandebroek, Ethnomedical    Research Specialist at NYBG, will trace the importance of medicinal plants    among indigenous peoples and immigrant communities from the Bolivian Amazon    to New York City.

Cocktail Evenings & Summer Concerts

Thursdays, June 27, July 18, and August 15, 6 - 9 p.m.; concert 7 -    8 p.m.

Sip a botanically inspired cocktail and enjoy an evening viewing of    Wild Medicine. Then enjoy a concert featuring festive music.

Adults: Non-Member $30/Member $20 (includes one complimentary    specialty cocktail or non-alcoholic beverage for adults 21 and over)    Advance tickets recommended.

Start the evening off with a champagne pre-party at Shop in the Garden each night from 5 to 6    p.m. Learn more at

Generous support for the Summer Concert Series is provided by Vivian    and Edward Merrin.

Poetry Walk

Ongoing during regular Garden hours

Stroll the Jane Watson Irwin Perennial Garden and explore poems    extolling the virtues of healing plants. Co-presented with the Poetry Society of America

International Garden Photographer of the Year Exhibit

In the Ross Gallery

May 18 - September 8

The New York Botanical Garden is the exclusive U.S. partner of this    worldwide photographic competition that showcases the very best    professional and amateur garden photographers from around the globe. This    exclusive exhibit, Nature's Pharmacy, will feature the finest images    embodying the themes of healing and wellness.

Exhibitions in the Arthur and Janet Ross Gallery are made possible by support from the Arthur and Janet Ross Fund.


Herbs: Historic Impact and    Contemporary Uses Wednesdays, August 7 & 14; 10 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.     Investigate the physical properties of herbs and their roles within    traditional cultures, from their ceremonial uses to their practical    applications as medicinals, aromatics, dyes, and detergents. Non-Member $280/Member $252

Nature's Pharmacy Saturday, September 21, 10 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.     Learn about plants historically used for first aid, asthma, insomnia,    sinusitis, bronchitis, revitalizing the immune system, preventing colds and    flu, and much more.

Non-Member $96/Member $86

Browse more classes and register at


Video: How to protect your plants from a big frost

Posted On: May 14, 2013

Video: How to protect your plants from a big frost

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Gardening: A bright idea for mothers - New Zealand style

Posted On: May 12, 2013
Make the garden shine and light up Mum's day, says Meg Liptrot

A plant you've potted for your mum is sure to make her smile. Photo / Getty Images, Supplied
A plant you've potted for your mum is sure to make her smile. Photo / Getty Images, Supplied

It's Mothers' Day today and, if you have been otherwise occupied and left it to the last minute, I've compiled some ideas to help. If you're already sorted, save these ideas for an upcoming birthday or Christmas present, or even a whole family present. Garden-related gifts often go on giving, or make gardening easier and more fun.

A flower to remember you

Give your mum a plant she can put in her garden and that will be flowering each Mother's Day. This will remind her of you. Camellias are long-lived evergreens which suit acid soils. Some will grow into small trees, others are great for hedging or suitable for the backdrop in a border garden.

They range in colour from white, through shades of pink to scarlet and burgundy, with flower shapes that are single or complex solid doubles.

If your mother's garden has a more subtropical theme, think about giving her a hibiscus. They have a long flowering time and are still looking great now. They also come in a flamboyant range of colours.

Gardenias are also a sure-fire winner, with their  Click Here


Looking for a different Mother's Day Gift?

Posted On: May 10, 2013



Instead of flowers this year, why not plant a tree this year for Mother's Day?

The gift keeps on giving - to both your family and to the environment!


But before you plant, here are a few quick tips to help your new tree live a long time


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A Garden of Delights, Mapped Out in Your Hand

Posted On: May 05, 2013

A Garden of Delights, Mapped Out in Your Hand

The sun and the earth have revolved to the relevant positions in space and spring, ladies and gentlemen, has definitely sprung. While I have the opposite of green thumbs, I now have a handy arsenal of gardening apps to help me in my springtime garden.

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Our Garden: Children and gardening

Posted On: May 02, 2013

Our Garden: Children and gardening

If you think corralling tomato horned worms and snails in your garden is hard work, try wrangling children. Actually, says Monette Meo, who teaches at St. Perpetua School in Lafayette, children are the best crop your garden will ever grow.

Meo was a weekend gardener when she witnessed first hand the importance of children in the garden. She was a mom herself and did lots of volunteer work at her children's school, but it wasn't until she started working at a school that had a garden that she saw what it could provide. Every time the teacher would   Click Here