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!

Dancing Flowers: The Gardens of Jacob’s Pillow @ Offsite: Jacob's Pillow
Aug 14 @ 8:30 pm copyNot 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.

Late Summer Garden Beauty: Field Study to Hollister House & Brush Hill Gardens @ offsite in Washington, CT
Sep 4 @ 2:00 pm – 5:30 pm


This class is near capacity. To register, please call the Garden at 413.298.3926.

14.09.04 Hollister House and Brush Hill GardensBring 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.

Growing Inside and Out: Field Study of Smith College Arboretum and Lyman Conservatory @ offsite in Northampton, MA
Oct 15 @ 2:00 pm – 6:00 pm

14.10.15 Smith College tTourParticipants 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.

Landscape Design Clinic with Walt Cudnohufsky @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Nov 1 @ 1:30 pm – 8:30 pm

14.11.02 Landscape Design ClinicAll levels (co-enrolled with Horticulture Certificate Program)

(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.

Terrain for Garden Shoppers:Terrarium Demonstration and Shopping Experience @ offsite in Westport, CT
Nov 12 @ 3:30 pm – 6:30 pm

Unfortunately, this trip has been cancelled.  We apologize for any inconvenience.

14.11.12 Terrain Terrarium Workshop

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

Botany for Gardeners @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Jan 6 @ 11:00 pm – Jan 7 @ 2:00 am


Classes meet on Tuesdays, 6-9 pm: January 6,  13, 20, 27, 2015.

This is a beginning course in plant anatomy and physiology that covers a wide range of topics.  The relationship between structure and function of seeds, roots, stems, leaves, flowers and fruits will be addressed.  An understanding of how plants grow and respond to their environment is fundamental to the successful planting and cultivation of this enormous class of organisms. This class can be taken as a core requirement for the Horticulture Certificate Level I program, or as an individual class.

Instructor – Joyce Hemingson, Ph.D. earned her degree in Botany from the University of Connecticut on the pollination biology of Clethra alnifolia (Sweet Pepperbush). She worked for many years as Director of Publications for White Flower Farm, located in Litchfield, CT. She is an active gardener and a longtime member of the North American Rock Garden Society.

Discounted price for 3 Spring Level I courses: $475



Sustainable Landscape Care & Garden Maintenance @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Feb 3 @ 11:00 pm – Feb 4 @ 2:00 am

Hort Certificate Brad Roeller Level Class

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

Landscape Design I @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Mar 2 @ 11:00 pm – Mar 3 @ 2:00 am

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

Pruning for Fruit Production: Pome and Stone Fruit Trees @ offsite
Apr 18 @ 10:00 am – 3:00 pm

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.

15.3.24 Prunning for Fruit production

Magnolias and More…Flowering Trees and Shrubs at Broken Arrow Nursery @ Offsite
Apr 30 @ 10:00 am – 1:00 pm

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.

Magnolia sieboldii, Close Up Flower

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