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!
Classes meet on Tuesdays, 6-9pm: February 3, 10, 17, 24, 2015.
Learn about the maintenance considerations that should be integrated into the design process. Students’ horticultural knowledge will expand to factor sustainable maintenance concerns with cost effectiveness into plant selection. Learn procedures for perennials, woody plants and lawns including transplanting, staking, fertilizing, winterizing, mulching, plant pathology and pest control with an emphasis on deer control. This class can be taken as a core requirement for the Horticulture Certificate Level I program, or as an individual class.
Instructor – Brad Roeller, B.S. is a private landscape garden supervisor for Altamont Estate in NY. He is the former Garden Manager for the New York Botanical Garden and has spent his entire career in horticulture with a focus on sustainable gardening. He lectures extensively and instructs at the New York Botanical Garden, Berkshire Botanical Garden and for New England Grows.
Discounted price for 3 Spring Level I courses: $475
Classes meet on Mondays, 6-9 pm: March 2, 9, 16, 23, 30, 2015.
Focus on the “big picture” and learn the principles of design, importance of drainage, and view slides of both successful and troubled landscapes. Site selection, design concepts and client presentations will be addressed and students will complete landscape design assignments. This class has 5 sessions.
Instructor – Craig Okerstrom Lang, ASLA is a landscape architect located in Berkshire County. His vast business experiences ranges from public to private projects. He teaches a variety of programs for the botanical garden including graphic, design and business practices.
Discounted price for 3 Spring Level I courses: $475
Classes meet on Tuesdays, 6-9pm: March 3, 10, 17, 24 and 31, 2015.
Designed for those starting or caring for a vegetable garden, this course will include discussion of soil and nutrient management, seed selection, crop rotation schemes, seeding and planting, pest management and specific plant cultivation, all in the context of the different vegetable groups. Each week, students will investigate a different vegetable family to insure all questions are answered about cultivation of these important food groups including Fabaceae (peas/beans/other legumes), greens (lettuce/mustards/arugula/mache and more), herbs (perennial and annual), perennial vegetables (asparagus/rhubarb/horseradish) , Chenopodiaceae (beet/chard family), Brassicaceae (cabbage/cauliflower/kale/brussels sprout family), Cucurbitaceae (squash/pumpkin/cucumber/melon family) ,Poeaceae (corn family), Allioideae (onion/garlic/leek/shallot family) and Solanaceae (tomato/potato/eggplant/pepper family). This class can be taken as a core requirement for the Horticulture Certificate Level II program, or as an individual class.
Instructor – Peter Salinetti, B.S. ,with wife Jenn owns Woven Roots Farm, a small family farm and CSA that grows vegetables and culinary herbs using traditional farming practices. For over ten years they have grown local produce for Berkshire County families. Their vegetables are grown using environmentally sustainable gardening practices, and they produce amazingly top-quality, delicious produce. Both Jen and Peter are committed to raising awareness about the importance of the local food supply, along with teaching technical information on how to do so. They have lectured on growing food for both NOFA and other regional organizations.
10% discount for 3 or more Spring Level III courses
Classes meet on Fridays, March 13 & 20, from 2-5pm and on Friday, March 27 (date changed from what was previously published because of snow cover), from 10am – 3pm.
Learn about the art and science of planting and caring for a fruit orchard, including both pome and stone fruit trees. All aspects of establishing and cultivating an orchard will be covered, including site and tree selection, how and when to plant, cultivation and maintenance, fruit evaluation and pest control. Dwarf, semi-dwarf and standard-size trees will be evaluated for space requirements. A special focus on how fruit with low pesticide use will be discussed candidly. The all-day Saturday, hands-on outdoor workshop will focus on the specifics of pruning stone and pome fruit trees to maximize fruit production. A variety of stone and pome fruit semi-dwarf trees in various stages of growth will be available for pruning. This will also include a demonstration on pruning espaliered pear trees.
Instructor – Steve McKay, M.S., 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.
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.
Participants should meet in the parking lot of Bartholomew’s Cobble, Sheffield, MA. Click here for directions.
Join ecologist and plant geek Drew Monthie for a plant walk and talk at Bartholomew’s Cobble, a Trustees of Reservations property in Sheffield, MA. Long noted for its exceptional collection of rare plants, this unique site contains a world-class collection of ephemeral wildflowers and ferns native to the northeast woodland. The program will focus on the ecology of this special place and will help gardeners learn how to incorporate these native beauties into the garden setting. Following the walk, take an optional, moderate, one-half-hour hike to the top of Hurlburt Hill to admire one of Berkshire County’s finest views. The group is invited to picnic there, surrounded by nesting bluebirds and bobolinks!
Drew Monthie is a horticulturalist, garden designer and ecologist working in upper New York State. He is committed to teaching about the importance of using native plants to provide beauty and preserve biodiversity in yards and gardens. He has a special interest in ethno-botany.
This program is fully enrolled.
Coach bus leaves Berkshire Botanical Garden promptly at 8am.
Bring a bag lunch and dress for the weather: comfortable, sturdy footwear and warm, waterproof outerwear, umbrella.
Join staff from the Berkshire Botanical Garden for a tour of the New York Botanical Garden at the height of spring bloom and to view NYBG’s major 2015 exhibition, FRIDA KAHLO: Art, Garden, Life, focusing on the iconic artist’s engagement with nature and intense interest in the botanical world in her native country of Mexico. Included in the cost of the trip is a ticket to the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory to view a stunning flower show re-imagining Kahlo’s studio and garden at Casa Azul (“Blue House”) in Coyoacán, Mexico City. There will be a rare display of more than a dozen original Kahlo paintings and drawings on view in the LuEsther T. Mertz Library’s Rondina and LoFaro Gallery.
Staff from BBG will lead tours of the garden, including the Ladies’ Border, the Herb Garden, the Jane Watson Irwin Perennial Garden and the spectacular Seasonal Walk, designed by superstar designers Piet Oudolf and Jaqueline van der Kloet. Of special interest will be the newly renovated native-plant garden. For those interested in trees, we will explore the Benson Ornamental Conifer Garden and the many small ornamental specimen trees on the grounds. Garden staff will answer questions and share horticultural insights throughout the day, and there will be unstructured time for participants to visit areas of specific interest in the afternoon. Snacks and afternoon beverage will be provided.
Dress for outdoors with sturdy walking shoes.
Ashintully, the name given to the original 1,000-acre estate be- longing to Egyptologist Robb de Peyster Tytus, is located in Tryringham, MA. The garden wasa gift of John Stewart McLennan Jr. and his wife Katharine to The Trustees of Reservations. Mr. McLennan, an accomplished and honored composer, designed the elegant gardens over 30 years as a parallel creative effort to his musical work. Tour the garden at Ashintully with landscape architect Walter Cudnohufsky and see this important garden through fresh and discerning eyes. There will be a detailed and lively group discussion about what makes Ashintully great. Participants will learn about garden design as a set of planned relationships and an exercise of restraint, focussing on the ten most important garden design principles as illustrated in Walter’s forthcoming book. The gardens blend several natural features into an ordered arrange- ment with both formal and informal beauty. In 1997, Ashintully Gardens received the Massachusetts Horticultural Society’s H. Hollis Hunnewell Medal. Enjoy a fresh June morning at this lovely garden space.
Walter Cudnohufsky, M.L.A. is a long-time dedicated teacher. Having founded and for 20 years directed the nationally acclaimed Conway (Mass.) School of Landscape Design, he has honed a reasoned approach to planning/design. Currently, his firm is engaged in many diverse and stimulating planning/design projects throughout the region.
This field trip is filled to capacity.
10 am – 2:30 pm is the time onsite in the northwest corner of CT. 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.
Join staff from the Berkshire Botanical Garden for an offsite adventure to private gardens that reflect the owner as curator. The first, in Kent, CT, was inspired by a strong interest in collecting specimen trees and shrubs and has been developed over the past 29 years. This garden contains one of the largest private collections of rare, distinctive and hard-to-find trees in the Northeast and reflects the owner’s quest for unique trees that are not only hardy and disease resistant, but also have the form, texture and foliage that amaze and please year ’round. Plants are identified by markers, a plant list and a map, allowing visitors to identify new plants for their own gardens. Following a picnic lunch on the terrace, travel north to West Cornwall, CT, to the shop and garden of designer Michael Trapp. This eclectic, highly stylized garden, constructed from stone and architectural details, creates a fantasy landscape in an Old-World-style garden tradition. With intimate cobbled pathways, terraced gardens, reflecting pools and a grotto-inspired garden room, it has a distinct French/Italian flavor. Learn how a difficult sloped site was used to advantage in creating this romantic garden.