The long weekend is here, and just in time for the final week of the Holiday Train Show! Don’t miss your chance to see our botanical homage to famous New York sights—and explore plenty of our other events and activities. Bring your little ones for the last performances of All Aboard with Thomas & Friends, head to the Mertz Library for a look into the architectural history of our landmark Haupt Conservatory, get outside to explore winter interest—like newly emerging snowdrops—in our collections, and so much more.
With NYBG being open for Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday, January 20, it’s the perfect time to catch the Holiday Train Show before it disappears for the winter. The show continues through January 26 with all-new highlights from Central Park.
Warm, colorful, humid. That’s the Haupt Conservatory in January. The living collections of our historic glasshouse thrive thanks to the balmy temperatures it maintains year-round, and there are plenty of fascinating botanical treasures to be found—from the neon structures of the neotropical blueberries to the spore-carrying sori of the ferns.
Shelf fungi fun in the Forest! There’s so much to see on walks along the winding trails of the Thain Family Forest, not least of which are mushrooms in reds, oranges, yellows, and browns. What have you spotted lately?
We each have our favorite New York landmark replicas in the Holiday Train Show. Tell us yours—and what you’d love to see added in the future!
Take a look at some of our staff-favorite buildings from the exhibition, like the original Penn Station, the Statue of Liberty, and the Guggenheim Museum. See these and other familiar favorites as the show continues through January 26!
"My favorite building is the original Penn Station. The Applied Imagination model captures its grandeur and serves as a reminder of how hard we must work to preserve our architectural and natural heritage." —Todd Forrest, Arthur Ross Vice President for Horticulture and Living Collections, NYBG
Some of the plants highlighted in “Biophilia: Sharing Our #plantlove,” the Conservatory exhibit sharing our curators’ most fascinating plants, protect themselves with spines, stings, and more. This is definitely a case of “look but don’t touch!”
Thorns, spines, and prickles: Pointy protuberances stab predators as they approach.
Armor: The thickened, waxy skin of many succulent plants adds a layer of protection from herbivores.
Stings: Minuscule needles of the mineral calcium oxalate are found in a wide variety of plants, from philodendrons to agave (which is used to make tequila). The sharp crystals irritate the skin and can be toxic when eaten. Stinging nettles (Urtica dioica) are covered in tiny fibers with sharp points that irritate and inject toxins into the skin.
The beauty of the Holiday Train Show isn’t just found in the trains and landmark replicas—but the plants, as well! Take the time to pore over the species that create the colors and textures of the landscapes, forming the world in miniature that makes this exhibition a holiday favorite in NYC.
Poor soil? No problem! If you’re a plant, just spend your evolutionary energy learning to eat bugs. The carnivorous plants highlighted in Biophilia: Sharing Our #plantlove, the Conservatory exhibit sharing our curators’ most fascinating plants, have evolved across the globe to capture prey. See how they do it, from snap traps to deadly pitchers and sticky situations.
Elizabeth Figueroa is the Associate Vice President of Community Relations at The New York Botanical Garden.
On Wednesday, November 20, we were overjoyed to once again host our annual Puerto Rican Heritage Month Celebration here at the Garden, with over 400 school students and visitors in attendance for a day of workshops and presentations commemorating the occasion.
Kids were treated to demonstrations of Bomba Dance and drumming history by Julia Gutierrez and Redobles de Cultura, a NYC-based bomba group who are proud members of today’s younger generation of Bomberos, cultural workers, and educators. Sandra Rivera brought plenty of canvas for students to paint and learn about the famed coqui of Puerto Rico, and Taino petroglyphs also made an appearance, as Mia Roman taught visitors about these symbols and invited them to paint and create their own necklaces with natural beads. Tanya Torres’s tile painting further helped kids to understand the flora of the amazing El Yunque National Forest in Puerto Rico.
Plants love the sun—but they’re also careful to avoid sunburn, even in winter. Inside the Haupt Conservatory, you’ll find Biophilia: Sharing Our #plantlove, an exhibit that spotlights some of our curators’ most fascinating plants, and the stories they reveal about nature, adaptation, and human culture. Here, see how they use waxy coatings, succulence, small surface areas, and even hair to serve as sunscreen.