There is something for everyone at the Berkshire Botanical Garden.  Below is a list of our scheduled events classes, and exhibits.  For details on any individual listing, just click on the event for more information.  If you still have questions, feel free to call the garden at 413.298.3926.  See you at the Garden!

Family Fridays: Frogs and Turtles of Berkshire County @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Aug 26 @ 11:00 am – 12:30 pm

This program is free for members and children under 12; free with BBG admission for non-members.

This program is designed for all ages and highlights some of the least known and most fascinating animals of our backyard. The illustrated talk will include methods of identifying frogs and turtles, details about their distinctive biology, and interesting facts about their behaviors and the methods these elusive creatures use to protect themselves and reproduce. Professor Tom Tyning will encourage families to get to know these shy and retiring animals and will have a few live frogs on hand to greet visitors. 

Tom Tyning is Professor of Environmental Science at Berkshire Community College. He specializes in reptiles and amphibians in his research and actively researches local rattlesnake populations.

Ariella Chezar: The Flower Workshop @ Zonneveld Farm, Columbia County, NY
Sep 1 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm

This class is fully enrolled.

Participants will meet at Zonneveld Farm (directions sent upon registration).

Join nationally recognized floral artist Ariella Chezar for an inspiring and informative program on flower arranging. The program will take place at Zonneveld Farm in Columbia County, NY, where Ariella will lead a tour of her cut-flower farm. She will demonstrate how to condition and arrange freshly cut flowers in the wild and unstructured style for which she is known. Using information from her latest book, The Flower Workshop, Ariella will lead participants through the basics of flower arranging. Following the walk, talk, and flower-arranging demonstration, she will sell and sign her inspiring new book.

Ariella Chezar is a nationally recognized flower arranger. She is best known for a free flowing, wild style and has championed this growing trend in flower arranging. In 2014 she started Zonneveld Farm, located in Columbia County, NY, where she cultivates much of what she uses for her arrangements and workshops. Ariella’s flowers are sustainably grown, and she is committed to using organic techniques on her farm.


Garden Practicum (required) @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Sep 6 @ 5:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Initial Fall Meeting: Tuesday, September 6, 5 pm

Garden practcium Tree Planting

The practicum complements classroom work through hands-on training in the garden. Work alongside garden staff practicing gardening techniques, usually beginning with a demonstration and instruction. Activities include propagation, transplanting, tree care, pruning, dividing, planting, cultivation and maintenance of annuals, perennials, shrubs and trees. Students need to complete 15 hours of work scheduled on Saturdays and/or weekdays, usually Wednesday or Thursday, throughout the year.  Required for Certification. Students may sign up for either the fall or spring term.   

Instructors – Berkshire Botanical Garden Staff

Herbaceous Plants I (required) @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Sep 6 @ 5:30 pm – 8:30 pm

May 16 Land of Geraniums3Classes meet on Tuesdays, September 6-27, from 5:30 – 8:30pm.

Learn about the basic herbaceous plants used in the garden setting including identification, planting, fertilizing, pest control and pruning.  Perennial selection will be the focus, although some time will be spent on annuals and bulbs.  This offering is essential for the serious gardener. Students should dress for outdoor field study including sturdy, waterproof footwear and warm outer clothing.

Instructor – David Burdick, B.S., a distinguished plantsman and zealous collector, shows regularly at the American Daffodil Society exhibition.  A practicing horticulturalist, he has worked at Berkshire Botanical Garden and Windy Hill Farm.  An engaging teacher, his latest venture is a specialty plant and cut flower business at Holiday Farm, Dalton, Massachusetts.

Discounted price for 4 Fall Level I courses: $650

Click here for class handouts

Stalking Wild Mushrooms @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Sep 10 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm

Learn all about woodland fungi with Berkshire Mycological Society president John Wheeler as he focuses on those commonly known as mushrooms. This enormous and diverse group of plants is most apparent in the wild during the fall months. The most common poisonous and edible mushrooms will be highlighted and identified. A variety of live fungi will be on display, supplemented with slides of other commonly found mushrooms. Participants will explore a nearby woodland and hunt for mushrooms. However, this participation in this class is not sufficient for learning how to identify edible wild mushroom. Dress for outdoors; participants will carpool to a short walk.

John Wheeler is the president of the Berkshire Mycological Society. He has taught mycology at Bard College at Simon’s Rock and has been an avid mycologist for over 20 years.

Bringing Plants In for the Winter @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Sep 10 @ 2:00 pm – 4:30 pm

Wondering what to do in the fall with all those special patio plants that you have slaved over for the summer months? Horticulturist and Viridssima owner Jenna O’Brien will pass along tricks of the trade to gardeners so that they can protect their tender perennials, house plants, woody potted specimens and succulent collections and encourage these plants to thrive during the winter season. Topics will include cultivation, fertilizing, watering, and health management as participants learn by doing and will leave with some plants to take home and carry through the winter. Overwintering and simple propagation techniques will help gardeners multiply their plant supply for the next season’s garden and save money next season (or spend it on something else) at the nursery. Bring hand pruners.

Jenna O’Brien owns Viridissima, a garden maintenance and design business. Her specialties include perennial garden design, container design and culture, indoor gardening, and houseplants. She teaches for area horticultural organizations and has completed the Horticulture Certificate Program at the Berkshire Botanical Garden.

16.09.11 Bring Plants in for the Winter

Gardening in Pots: How to Design, Maintain, and Winterize Container Gardens and Plants @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Sep 12 @ 5:30 pm – 8:30 pm

This class meets on Mondays, September 12, 19,  and 26, from 5:30 – 8:30pm. It is co-enrolled with the Horticulture Certificate Program.

Acquire a knowledge of the skills required for creating and maintaining beautiful and successful container gardens. Container gardening expert Jenna O’Brien starts with techniques for overwintering tropicals, tender perennials, bulbs, and annuals without a greenhouse by teaching participants how to store dormant plants, collect and save seeds, and take divisions and cuttings. Jenna also shares her thorough knowledge of plants that thrive in containers and how to care for them. This class will cover practical approaches to container gardening such as plants that do double duty as houseplants in the winter and as outdoor plants in the summer. The class also is filled with advice on container selection, siting, planting, growing, controlling pests, and maintaining moveable gardens.

Jenna O’Brien owns Viridissima, a garden design and maintenance business. Her specialties include perennial garden design, container design and culture, indoor gardening, and houseplants. She teaches at area horticultural organizations and has completed the Horticulture Certificate Program at the Berkshire Botanical Garden.

16.09.11 Bring Plants in for the Winter

Fruits of the Earth: A Talk and Book Signing by Amy Goldman @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Sep 17 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm

Vegetable gardener extraordinaire and heirloom seed activist Amy Goldman shares her journey over time on the historic Abraham Traver farmstead in the Hudson Valley. Amy will chronicle her evolution as a gardener and will highlight some of the heirloom vegetables, fruits, berries, and nuts that she has grown over the past 25 years on her 200-acre farm, all of which have been preserved in another fashion as well – for the past 15 years acclaimed photographer Jerry Spagnoli has used a daguerreotype process to capture these much cherished cultivars of fruits and vegetables in ethereal images with a silvery luminous depth and a timeless beauty. Amy will share her experiences growing many of her favorite heirloom vegetables and fruits accompanied by images that are sure to inspire both the home gardener and those simply interested in our food heritage. A book signing will follow the talk.

Growing Giant Pumpkins @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Sep 17 @ 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm

This class is free for those attending Amy Goldman’s Fruits of the Earth on the morning of September 17.

Join woody plant guru Adam Wheeler of Broken Arrow Nursery for a fun and informative look into the world of competitive pumpkin growing. Learn how to grow plants in the Cucurbita family to bear the biggest and best fruits possible. Although the lecture will focus on how to grow extra-large pumpkins it will also inform gardeners about improving growing conditions for other pumpkin relatives including melons, squash, and cucumbers. And Adam will share his special pumpkin seeds with participants for the next growing season. 

Adam Wheeler is the Propagation and New Plant Development Manager for Broken Arrow Nursery located in Hamden, CT, a specialty nursery with a focus on woody plants.  He teaches woody plant propagation workshops throughout New England.

Pruning Shrubs and Small Ornamental Trees @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Sep 24 @ 9:30 am – 12:30 pm

Autumn is a great time to assess your woody plants for shape and structure. This demonstration and workshop, led by Forest Health Program Director for the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation and arborist Ken Gooch, focuses on pruning, including when, why and how to shape, renovate, train, or rejuvenate your woody plants. Learn about pruning tools, timing, and specific techniques suited to the home gardener. Pruning techniques for evergreen and deciduous hedges will also be covered. Wear waterproof outerwear and boots; bring pruners. 

Ken Gooch is the Forest Health Program Director for the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation. Additionally, he is a Massachusetts Certified Arborist and teaches arboriculture at the BBG. He lectures widely on a variety of topics including forest health, pruning, and arboriculture.

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