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!
Not only is Jacob’s Pillow one of the Berkshire’s most celebrated cultural institutions and famous dance festivals in the world, it is also home to an incredible display of annual and perennial gardens. Join garden designer Valerie Locher for a behind-the-scenes tour of these much admired gardens. Concentrating on annuals, Valerie will discuss her design concepts and will share tips and techniques for keeping gardens beautiful throughout the summer. Following the tour, participants are welcome to attend a free performance at the Pillow’s Inside/Out theater.
Valerie Locher owns a local landscape design and gardening business and has been cultivating the grounds of Jacob’s Pillow since the early ’80s, when she first donated four hanging baskets to the Ted Shawn Theater. Since then she has worked to renovate the Tea Garden, the Meeker Garden and the Inside/Out theater, helping the gardens to become a beloved part of the spirit of Jacob’s Pillow. It is her way to contribute to the dance community and help set the stage for all of the great performances that occur there each summer.
This program is designed for all ages and highlights some of the furry creatures that inhabit the landscape with us. Travelling under cover of dark, many of these amazing mammals seldom show themselves to humans during the day. Instructor Rick Roth will encourage families to get to know these mammals, learn about their natural history, and help develop appreciation and respect for these wild animals that often live in our own backyards. The talk will include live specimens including a fisher cat, grey fox, skunk, flying squirrels and more.
Rick Roth, a conservationist and teacher, runs The Creature Teachers, a family-owned environmental and animal education company. His goal is to educate the public about the wonders and diversity of the animals that share our planet.
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 snakes, a bit about their biology, interesting tidbits about their behaviors and the methods that snakes use to protect themselves and reproduce. Professor Tom Tyning will encourage families to get to know these shy and retiring animals. A live snake or two will be 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.
Unfortunately, this event has been canceled. Please excuse any inconvenience this may have caused. Thank you!
FREE Family Movie Night!
Our outdoor movie series continues on August 31st with the film Ratatouille – a film about a rat who longs to be a chef in one of Paris’s fanciest restaurants. Again, those in attendance are encouraged to bring picnics and blankets and arrive early to enjoy the grounds. The movie will begin at 8pm and the grounds of the Garden will open at 7pm.
This class is near capacity. To register, please call the Garden at 413.298.3926.
Bring a bagged lunch. Participants can choose to carpool or drive separately. Those joining the carpool should meet in the parking lot at Berkshire Botanical Garden for an 8:30 am departure. Carpool will return at approximately 3 pm. Program time in Washington, CT, is 10am – 1:30pm.
Learn how to extend the beauty of the summer garden on this study tour of two exceptional private gardens in Washington, CT. Gardeners tend to concentrate their efforts in early and mid summer, but late summer can be an exceptional time of beauty…if one knows how to achieve it. Join George Schoellkopf as he leads you through Hollister House Gardens at its late summer peak, in tip-top shape for their annual study weekend. Learn about gardening in early September as summer cools and fall advances—a beautiful time to be in the garden. Then we will travel just up the road to Brush Hill Gardens, a horticultural gem created by Barbara Paul Robinson and Charles Raskob Robinson. This 40-year-old garden “is very much a gardening partnership: Charlie sculpts the land, designs and builds all the garden structures and opens new ‘canvases’ for Barbara to paint her plants upon.” Join Barbara Robinson for a tour of her garden with an eye for structure and form, in addition to a sophisticated plant palette. We are invited to picnic on the lawn of this magnificent property. Elisabeth Cary, Director of Education at Berkshire Botanical Garden, will be the tour leader on the trip.
Participants can choose to carpool or drive separately. Those joining the carpool should meet in the parking lot at Berkshire Botanical Garden for a 9am departure. Carpool will return at approximately 3 pm. Program time in Northampton, MA, is 10 am – 2 pm.
Cost of lunch is not included in the fee.
Join BBG staff for an in-depth field study of Smith College Arboretum and Lyman Conservatory. First, tour the exceptional collection of woody plants at the height of the fall foliage with Landscape Manager and arborist, Jay Girard. Consider shrubs, small ornamental trees and large trees that thrive in our gardening zone that are particularly beautiful during the late summer and fall. Then explore the extensive collection of tropical, citrus, semi-tropical, succulent and cactus collections with longtime Lyman Conservatory Manager, Rob Nicholson. After studying this extensive collection of plants, participants can choose to purchase lunch at Paul & Elisabeth’s, a popular Northampton restaurant in walking distance of the college. Director of Education, Elisabeth Cary, will lead the tour from BBG and will contribute her “two-cents” on the wonderful woody plant collection.
(To have your project considered, call 413-298-3926 for details)
Dress for outdoors, waterproof footwear and a bag lunch.
This fast-paced, information-saturated clinic will introduce design students, homeowners and others to opportunities to problem-solve the design process. It will lead to the basic conceptual elements of a landscape master plan. All attendees will participate in the process of observing and designing and will come away with coherent examples of how design happens. An active discussion format will focus on common design principles. A step-by-step PowerPoint presentation will focus the discussion later in the afternoon. The field trip will be held rain or shine.
Walter Cudnohufsky is owner of Walter Cudnohufsky Associates Landscape Architects, Land and Community Planners, Ashfield, MA. He is the founder and for 20 years was the director of the Conway School of Landscape Design.
Unfortunately, this trip has been cancelled. We apologize for any inconvenience.
Join mad garden shopper Elisabeth Cary for a trip to the newly opened, fabulous garden/lifestyle store, Terrain, located in Westport, CT. The brain-child of the founders of Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie, this gardening emporium is a treasure-trove of fabulous lifestyle products with an emphasis on GARDEN. Known for an exceptional selection of terrarium supplies, unique glass containers and phenomenal plants, join a terrarium specialist for a terrarium demonstration. The day will include the demonstration, time for shopping and lunch at the cafe. This program is scheduled for the beginning of the holiday season, so save your pennies! For more information about Terrain, visit www.shopterrain.com.
The date of this class has been rescheduled to Saturday April 18.
Participants should dress warmly and bring pruners and a bag lunch. Directions available upon registration
This demonstration/workshop will focus on the specifics of pruning stone and pome fruit trees and some small fruits, including cane fruits and ribes. Unlike ornamental woody plants, pruning for fruit is a special science that is designed to maximize fruit production. Learn the principles of pruning for shape, size and, most importantly, fruit production. Watch a structural pruning demonstration on newly planted fruit trees. Semi-dwarf orchard trees, including mature and newly planted trees, will be available for pruning.
Steve McKay is the former Grape and Small Fruit Specialist for Cornell Cooperative Extension in eastern New York State. He has a B.S. in entomology from U.C. Davis and a M.S. in pomology. He own Micosta, a fruit nursery located in Hudson, NY. He specializes in traditional and unusual fruit tree and small fruits.
Participants can choose to carpool or drive separately. Those joining the carpool should meet in the parking lot at Berkshire Botanical Garden for an 8:15 departure. Directions are here.
Join woody-plant guru Adam Wheeler for a tour of the display gardens at Broken Arrow Nursery in Hamden, CT. This field study will focus on magnolias, but will also include other choice woody plants, including small ornamental trees and shrubs that thrive in zone 5. Adam will extol the virtues of some of his favorite ornamentals and will give us a peek into some of the new woody plants coming on the market. Following the tour, enjoy a picnic lunch and plenty of time for shopping at this fabulous specialty nursery.
Adam Wheeler is the Propagation and New Plant Development Manager for Broken Arrow Nursery in Hamden, CT, a specialty nursery with a focus on woody plants. He teaches woody-plant propagation workshops throughout New England.