Inside The New York Botanical Garden


Impressive Numbers for Year-One of the EarthKind Trials

Posted in People, Video on December 8 2011, by Rustin Dwyer

NYBG EarthKind TrialsWith wintery weather on the way, it hardly seems like the time to be talking roses. The forecast looks chilly and the Peggy Rockefeller Rose Garden has been “put to bed” for the season, so what is there to talk about?

How about completely changing the face of rose growing for home gardeners in the northeast? That’s what rose garden curator Peter Kukielski hopes to accomplish with the EarthKind™ Rose Trials beds, located just south of Daffodil Hill. The goal of the EarthKind™ program is to identify cultivars that combine beauty with proven durability in the landscape, and that means they’ll receive no water other than what falls from the sky, nor fertilizers or pesticides of any kind.

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Video: Setting Up the Holiday Train Show

Posted in Holiday Train Show, Video on November 29 2011, by Ann Rafalko

One of the most frequent requests we get at the Garden is, “Can you make a time lapse video of what it takes to set-up the Holiday Train Show?” And finally, we can say, yes, yes we can!

If you would like an even more in-depth look at how the Train Show is put together, you can visit the Artist’s Studio in the Conservatory courtyard, where you will see one model dwelling in various phases of completion, and perhaps glean some inspiration for making your own plant-based model at home. Should you prefer houses of a more edible nature, be sure to stop by Gingerbread Adventures in the Everett Children’s Adventure Garden where a miniature neighborhood of fantastical gingerbread houses from a cadre of creative bakers are sure to elicit “ooohs” and “aaahs” from children of all ages.

Poetic Inspiration in the Forest

Posted in People, Video on November 16 2011, by Rustin Dwyer

In recent weeks, we’ve been telling you about the addition of a literary element to our collection of audio tours. We’ve also been working hard to recover from October’s unseasonably early snowstorm in time for the dedication of our 50-acre Forest.

In the spirit of this drive, here’s a video of author Camille Rankine‘s poem, “Instructions on the Forest,” which was filmed in and inspired by our recently rededicated Forest.

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Poetry and Prose at the Garden with Literary Audio Tours

Posted in Video on November 2 2011, by Rustin Dwyer

In the Nancy Bryan Luce Herb Garden
In the Nancy Bryan Luce Herb Garden

In case you hadn’t heard, the Garden offers a range of audio tours providing additional insights into our collections and exhibitions, as well as information about horticulture and the research initiatives going on here and across the world. Recently we told you about our partnership with the National Book Foundation and the Poetry Society of America, a collaboration undertaken to add a literary element to our tours.

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Great Gruesome Gourds – More Spooky Carvings to Come!

Posted in Around the Garden, Exhibitions, Video on October 26 2011, by Rustin Dwyer

Ray Villafane, Michael Natiello and ZombiesWe’re still basking the freakish glow of superstar sculptor Ray Villafane’s (on the right in this photo) wild zombie sculpture he constructed at the Garden using two of the world’s largest pumpkins. But by no means are the creepy carvings over with! This weekend will feature the supremely talented artist Michael Natiello (under the zombie’s hand)–the brains behind the spectacular Great Jack ‘O Lantern Blaze as well as our Haunted Pumpkin Garden here in the Children’s Adventure Garden.

Weather permitting however, Villafane’s pumpkin creation will only be on display for as long at it stays presentable and also as long as we can keep the wily Bronx wildlife from having their own pumpkin feasts.

For those of you who couldn’t be here last weekend, we put together a short video of Ray in his own words describing his process. All the gory, gourdy goodness is below!

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Video: Take a Look Inside Fall Flowers of Japan

Posted in Exhibitions, Exhibitions, Kiku, Video on October 20 2011, by Rustin Dwyer

Chrysanthemums KikuThe New York Botanical Garden didn’t just start growing traditional styles of Japanese chrysanthemum–called kiku in Japanese–on a whim. It’s a labor intensive process that the Japanese have been perfecting for centuries, passing down techniques from generation to generation. Some of the more complex display styles can take a team of gardeners almost a year to pull off, which also includes the fabrication of multiple sets of giant metal frameworks upon which the flowers are trained. Training the plant, forcing its buds, timing the blooms; kiku is most definitely not for novices.

Watch a short documentary about Fall Flowers of Japan and the art of kiku below.

Tanjou – A Sculpture of Rebirth at The New York Botanical Garden

Posted in Exhibitions, Exhibitions, Kiku, Video on October 5 2011, by Rustin Dwyer

Tropical Storm Irene and her friend Lee certainly left their mark across the northeast. They left a trail of downed trees, broken limbs, and leaves pretty much everywhere. Not only did it give the arborists and horticulturalists here at NYBG plenty of work, but it also provided a unique situation for a commissioned sculpture in the Palm Dome of the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory. Internationally renowned installation artist Tetsunori Kawana–no stranger to working with natural materials–got the chance to try something new, recycling what would ultimately end up as compost or mulch into a sculpture, a “rebirth.”

See a documentary detailing Kawana's process in creating Tanjou below.

NYBG Literary Audio Tour – Sorry No Limericks

Posted in People, Video on August 9 2011, by Plant Talk

Early this year, the New York Botanical Garden partnered with National Book Foundation and Poetry Society of America to create a literary element to our audio tours. With support from an award from the National Endowment for the Arts, we reached out to a number of NYC-based authors and poets and asked them to produce works based on their experiences or certain areas of the Garden.

Below you can see one of our contributors for the summer: author Ana Boži?evi? who chose the Peggy Rockefeller Rose Garden as her inspiriation for her work, Rose Hopscotch.

You can access the audio tour two ways:

Using your cell phone, call 718.362.9561 and type in the number next to the audio tour symbol on signs throughout the Garden grounds. You can even call from home if you’d like.

What do you think of the new Audio Literary Tour? Are there any NYC-based authors you’d like to see for upcoming seasons? Leave us a comment and let us know!

Fun, Fresh and Simple — Cooking in the Family Garden

Posted in How-to, Video on August 3 2011, by Rustin Dwyer

The Children’s Gardening Program at the Ruth Rea Howell Family Garden gives kids ages 3-12 a chance to team-up to plant, tend and harvest their very own plot in the Garden. But that’s only half of the story — of course the most fun part is eating all of that homegrown produce!

Stop by the Family Garden to enjoy cooking demonstrations throughout the week, offering simple but delicious ideas on how to take advantage of our garden’s bounty. Our hands-on activities will help you to remember that growing, preparing and eating good food needs to be FUN!

All this month, the gardening fun in the Family Garden focuses on plants that are pickled. Enjoy the harvest of fresh cucumbers by making your own pickles to take home. For a rundown of what’s happening now, check the “plan your visit” section of our website.

Here’s a short video featuring two of the amazing staff members in the Family Garden, Rachel and Annie, showing you one of the easiest dishes around – a simple herb confetti. But as you’ll see, harvesting and preparing the dish is almost more fun than eating it!

Video Plant Profile: Buckeyes ”Buck” the Trend

Posted in Video on July 28 2011, by Rustin Dwyer

In the heat of the summer (and this one has especially been hot!), there are some beautiful blossoms to behold. From daylilies, hibiscus, waterlilies and of course roses, summer gardens everywhere are swelling with colorful buds. But the same just can’t be said for most woody plants.

That’s what makes the subject of this week’s video plant profile so special. In the summer heat, most woody plants have no showy flowers, but the genus Aesculus, more commonly known as buckeye, “buck”s that trend.

Check out the video below hosted by Plant Records Manager Jon Peter as he covers a few of the many types of Aesculus you can see at the Garden, and who knows, maybe in your own backyard?

Previous Video Plant Profiles:

The Cottonwood Tree