Lectures & Symposia

Throughout the year, The New York Botanical Garden offers lectures in which outstanding landscape architects and garden designers present their signature works and insights, and internationally recognized speakers address topics of global interest related to the study, preservation, and appreciation of the plant kingdom.

Landscape Design Students & Alumni Series

Select Tuesdays: October–March; 1–3 p.m., after LDSA Meetings, Ross Hall

Come hear award winning and nationally renowned professionals share their expertise on current topics in landscape design and horticulture. These popular afternoon lectures coincide with monthly morning meetings of the Landscape Design Students and Alumni Association. All are welcome to register.

17th Annual Winter Lecture Series:
Great Gardens and Their Legacies

Three Thursdays: January 26, February 23, & March 30; 10–11:30 a.m.

Chanticleer… Hermannshof… Great Dixter. Three beloved and influential gardens—each founded on a singular vision, each with an evolving legacy. Join us for this year's fascinating series, as three innovative gardeners share the challenges of maintaining—and expanding—these iconic spaces. This year's speakers are R. William Thomas, Cassian Schmidt, and Aaron Bertelsen. Plantsmen as well as stewards, they must protect past, present, and future, balancing art, nature, technology, and the expectations of an ever-growing public.

Plants, Exploration, and Our Future

Friday, March 3; 10 a.m.–12 p.m., Ross Hall, NYBG

Exploration has been at the core of the Garden’s mission since its founding—and is more urgent now than ever in the face of global environmental change. The crucial work NYBG scientists undertake at all scales and in all places—from discovering drought-resistant genes in the lab, to identifying threatened species in the rain forest, to documenting vanishing traditional medicinal plant knowledge—empowers us to understand plants in whole new ways. Entwined features presentations by NYBG scientists and focuses on the vital role exploration plays in understanding the entwined relationships of plants to the well-being of humans and ecosystems, and the challenges for sustaining those relationships over time. (Illustration: Manettia coccinea © Bobbi Angell)

Biodiversity, Climate, and Humanity at a Crossroads

A Symposium Presented by the Humanities Institute in collaboration with the Center for Science and Society of Columbia University

Thursday, March 9; 10 a.m.–12:30 p.m., Ross Hall, NYBG

Humanity has reached a crossroads in the effort to combat climate change and protect biodiversity. As Earth’s temperature rises closer to the danger limit set forth in the Paris Agreement, so does the risk of a range of truly catastrophic events, including extreme weather, rising sea levels, and mass extinctions. How have we come so close to a critical threshold? How can we stop ourselves from crossing it? In Threshold, three renowned scholars discuss the implications of the climate crisis for the future of life on Earth.

Preserving the Mighty Oak

Friday, March 10; 8:30 a.m.–1:30 p.m., Ross Hall, NYBG

Oaks form the arboreal framework of the forests, parks, and gardens of the Northeast. They provide shade, valuable timber, and food for wildlife ranging from black bears to the larvae of Horace’s Duskywing butterflies. Unfortunately, environmental change and an increasing number of introduced pests and diseases are threatening the health of oaks throughout our region, leaving gardeners, arborists, and nature lovers wondering what they can do. In Preserving the Mighty Oak, four celebrated experts discuss the natural and cultural history of oaks, the challenges that face them, and best practices for promoting their health. (Image: © Heath Cajandig, Sunset Burr Oak)

Browse all lectures and courses at nybg.org/adulted