Take a Garden-wide look at exhibitions planning at The New York Botanical Garden. Hear from key NYBG staff in Exhibitions and Programming, Horticulture, Education, and Plant Science. This half-day program will include a panel talk, topic-focused breakout sessions, and tours. Connect and learn with your Public Garden colleagues!

$99 for members / $199 for non-members
Online registration closes Sept 1
Onsite registration will increase by $25 and dietary accomodations cannot be guaranteed.

Schedule of Events

11:30p – 1p Executive Leader Lunch: Sponsored by Tianyu Arts & Culture 
Add-on to your registration for $25

1p – 2p Welcome/Keynote Presentation (45min + 10 min break)

Welcome & Panel Discussion, Ross Hall
A Broad Look at Exhibitions Planning at The New York Botanical Garden

Hear key NYBG staff discuss how exhibitions drive innovative connections across divisions to produce shows such as …things come to thrive…in the shedding…in the molting… now on view through October 22, 2023. Top representatives from Exhibitions & Programming, Horticulture, Education, and Plant Science will discuss how we work together to create and execute major exhibitions incorporating plants, art, culture, and science.

Panel Participants:

  • James Boyer, Stavros Niarchos Foundation Vice President for Children’s Education and Senior Director of Education
  • Joanna Groarke, Vice President for Exhibitions and Programming
  • Emily Sessa, Patricia K. Holmgren Director of the William and Lynda Steere Herbarium
  • Brian Sullivan, Vivian and Edward Merrin Vice President for Glasshouses and Landscape

2p – 3p Breakout Sessions (45mins + 10 min break)

Native Plant Garden Soil Steaming Project
Designed by Sheila Brady of the great American landscape architecture firm Oehme van Sweden, the 3.5-acre Native Plant Garden celebrates the beauty of plants native to northeastern North America. Learn about NYBG’s ongoing management plan to control invasive weeds through the use of steam treatments. This session will include an in-depth project overview, discussion of site selection, preparation and post-steam treatment replanting, followed by a site walkthrough. Led by Michael Hagen, Curator of the Rock Garden and Native Plant Garden and Colin Kirk, Marjorie G Rosen Manager of Outdoor Gardens

Bronx Community Gardeners + Herbarium Initiative and Open House

Despite containing an astounding 7.8 million plant specimens from all over the world, the William and Lynda Steere Herbarium lacks representation of the rich biocultural diversity right in its own backyard. Visit the William and Lynda Steere Herbarium for an open house display of specimens focused on sustainability, extinct plants, and the Bronx Community Gardeners + Herbarium Initiative, an interdisciplinary project from the Herbarium, the Humanities Institute, Bronx Green-Up, and the Office of Diversity and Inclusion. Partnering with Bronx community gardeners to document the local biocultural diversity via the collection and preservation of herbarium specimens allows for greater education, representation, and investment in conservation and ecological science for and by Bronx residents. Led by Matthew Pace, Assistant Curator of the Herbarium

Developing a Shared Vision of Effective Teaching Practices through Interdepartmental Educator Professional Learning

Children’s Education aims to create learning spaces where participants feel welcome, whose lived experiences are connected to place, and a sense of belonging is nurtured through shared experiences that exemplify its institutional mission. Planning for professional learning for program-facing staff throughout the organization is essential to imbue these values. Learn from NYBG leaders who have implemented research-based, student-centered learning experiences which have led to a shared vision of effective teaching practices that facilitate discovery of exhibition themes. Reflect on the outcomes of this work with peers and walk away with next steps for education at your institution. This session will illustrate the effectiveness of developing shared language across departments, internally, and outwardly to constituents; model BEETLES, outdoor science Professional Learning resources for research-based approaches and tools to improve science teaching and learning. Led by Shannon Haas, Associate Director of Professional Learning, Caryn Hummell, Urban Advantage Coordinator, and Tai Montanarella, Marian S. Heiskell Associate Director of School and Out of School Programs

Bronx Community Farm Hubs
At the onset of the pandemic in spring 2020, NYBG’s Bronx Green-Up and Edible Academy joined with 18 urban farms and community gardens throughout the Bronx to create the Bronx Community Farm Hubs network, ensuring fresh fruits and vegetables would go to those in need during a challenging time. Learn more about how this network came together, NYBG’s ongoing role in coordinating and sharing resources with this network and how this network has evolved in the subsequent years. Led by Toby Adams, Gregory Long Director of the Edible Academy, Ursula Chanse, Senior Director of Bronx Green Up and Community Horticulture, and Che’Von Cooper, Horticulturist/Urban Agriculturalist

The Strategic Planning Process
In February of 2022, NYBG embarked on a two-year Strategic Planning process that was designed to be inclusive and transparent to key stakeholders. The Plan will be finalized in November, but the work of administering the plan will just be beginning. Learn about NYBG’s unique planning processes and how you might apply their techniques to your own institution’s strategic planning. Led by Victoria Lewis, Director of Institutional Planning & Evaluation

3p – 4p On-Site Tours (45min + 10 min break)

Thain Family Forest Tour
The Thain Family Forest is the largest uncut expanse of New York’s original wooded landscape. The unique beauty and ecological importance of the forest are one of the reasons why the founders selected this site for The New York Botanical Garden in 1895. To this day, the Forest remains a magnificent reminder of the beauty and resilience of nature in the face of complex disturbances. Join Eliot Nagele, Director of the Thain Family Forest for a tour to learn about about the trees, history, geology, and ecology of this original, uncut 50-acre woodland.

Jane Watson Irwin Perennial Garden Tour
A vast palette of the colors and textures of flowers and foliage makes the Perennial Garden a living work of art year-round. This garden is designed as a series of “rooms,” each individual space defined by a distinct color palette or seasonality. This tour through the Perennial Garden will showcase each room filled with perennials, grasses, bulbs, shrubs, and trees that flower or produce fruit at various times, ensuring color and fragrance throughout the year. Led by Tess Kuracina, Director of Living Collections and Curator of Herbaceous Collections

Mertz Library Conservation Lab Tour
The Mertz Library’s Conservation Team provides immediate and long-term care to all of the Library’s collections with a goal to increase their longevity and accessibility. This includes preparing collection items for inhouse exhibitions as well as exhibitions at other institutions. Visit the Conservation Lab to learn how the collections are cared for. Hear what is involved in preparing books, prints, botanical art, ephemera and other objects for safe display during an exhibition and see some examples of mounts used to display these items. Led by Kelsey Miller, Conservator

Ebony G. Patterson …things come to thrive…in the shedding…in the molting… Exhibition Tour
Experience the seductive beauty of gardens through the eyes of celebrated contemporary artist Ebony G. Patterson. Known for her lavishly detailed mixed media installations, Patterson brings her signature style to the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory, and NYBG’s landscape and galleries. In this tour, you will follow a white peacock within the Conservatory, giving way to an immersive garden populated with ghostly plants representing extinct species that now exist only as specimens in NYBG’s Herbarium. Led by Helena LaPorte-Burns, Senior Manager of Exhibitions & Programming Administration and Michaela Wright, Manager of Interpretive Content

4p – 5p Closing Circle & Networking Hour, Ross Gallery

Reflect and connect about the day with your Garden colleagues. Snacks and beverages served.