Brookside Gardens will present the annual Wings of Fancy Live Butterfly & Caterpillar Exhibit April 18-September 16. As visitors enter the South Conservatory, they will be “surrounded by hundreds of brilliant live butterflies from North America, Costa Rica, Africa and Asia soaring among colorful flowers and going about their business of drinking nectar and looking for others of their kind. Visitors learn about their amazing metamorphosis, the important role butterflies play in healthy ecosystems, and how to ensure these beautiful insects thrive in our own gardens.”
Architect of the Capitol Stephen T. Ayers named Dr. Saharah Moon Chapotin as Executive Director of the U.S. Botanic Garden (USBG) in February, 2018. Before joining the USBG, Dr. Chapotin worked at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), where she has served since 2006. She was the Deputy Assistant to the Administrator at USAID’s Bureau for Food Security. Dr. Chapotin holds a bachelor of science in biology from Stanford University and a doctorate in plant physiology from Harvard University. Before her work with USAID, she completed fellowships at Iowa State University and the National Academies working on issues of biosafety policy, scientific communication and national security.
The U.S. Botanic Garden is exhibiting Orchid Spectrumin the Conservatory, thru April 8, 2018.The annual orchid show is presented in collaboration with Smithsonian Gardens. The exhibition “explores thousands of amazing orchid blooms arranged in captivating displays, and visitors can appreciate many unique, rarely-seen orchids from the USBG’s and Smithsonian Gardens’ extensive plant collections.”
The U.S. Botanic Garden is displaying an exhibit titled Wall Flowers: Urban Botanical Art, in the Conservatory, thru October, 2018. “The exhibit features large-scale art by local artists who specialize in public murals that beautify our cities. The murals depict plants using bold colors and monumental scale. The exhibit fosters creative conversations about botanical art and new ways to communicate the important roles plants play in our lives.”
Image below: The logo for Wall Flowers: Urban Botanical Art
The American Society of Botanical Artists will present Botanical Art Worldwide: America's Flora - Linking People with Plants in the US Botanic Garden, May 4-October 15.Jurors have selected 46 artworks for the exhibition, and all artworks feature native plants of the US. Similar exhibitions will be held in 24 other countries. Each country will provide up to 40 images of works in their exhibitions to be compiled into a digital slide show that will be shown at participating venues. A Worldwide Day of Botanical Art will be held on May 18, with events held for 24 hours, following the sun from venue to venue.”Countries participating include: Australia, Bermuda, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, France, Germany, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Russia, Scotland, South Africa, Thailand, Ukraine, the United Kingdom and the U.S. Visit http://asba-art.org/
Virginia Garden Week will take place April 21-28.House & Garden Tours will be offered Statewide to over 250 of Virginia's most beautiful gardens, homes and historic landmarks during "America's Largest Open House." The 8-day event provides visitors a unique opportunity to see unforgettable gardens at the peak of Virginia's springtime color, as well as beautiful houses enhanced by more than 2,300 flower arrangements created by Garden Club of Virginia members. Tour proceeds fund the restoration and preservation of more than 40 of Virginia's historic public gardens and landscapes, a research fellowship program, and a Garden Club of Virginia Centennial project with Virginia State Parks. The walking tour of Old Town Alexandria will take place on April 21.The tour will include 5 houses with gardens within the historic district and refreshments at nearby St. Paul’s Episcopal Church. A Marketplace at the Athenaeum, boutique shopping, and fine dining are nearby. In addition, the tour ticket allows access to two Garden Club of Virginia restoration projects, George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate and Gardens and Green Spring Gardens, plus other local properties of historic interest.
The National Arboretum will have a Garden Fair and Plant Sale on April 28 & 29. The event is a favorite of area gardeners from novice to expert. The carefully-curated offerings include rare and hard-to-find plants as well as tried-and-true favorites. In addition, expert advice will be available on-site to guide you through selecting plants for “that tricky spot in your garden.”
The Annual Georgetown House Tour hosted by St. John’s Episcopal Church will take place on April 28. The tour raises funds for ministry and outreach. Each year the Tour features a number of Georgetown’s most beautiful homes that are within easy walking distance. The homes can be visited at your own pace and in your preferred order. The tour price includes a House Tour Magazine full of useful information that serves also as your admission to each home, and includes a map of the houses along with historic information and background on each house. The ticket also includes a Parish Tea in Blake Hall at the historic church at 3240 O St. NW. The tea features homemade tea sandwiches and sweets.
The Georgetown Garden Club will present the annual Georgetown Garden Tour on May 12. The tour features a wide variety of gardens ranging from spacious sweeping lawns and majestic trees to intimate outside rooms. Afternoon refreshments are included in the tour and are served at Keith Hall, Christ Church, from 2 until 4 p.m.
Hillwood Estate, Museum & Gardens is displaying an exhibition titled The Artistic Table, thru June 10. In the 1950s & 1960s, Marjorie Merriweather Post, who owned Hillwood, entertained diplomats, socialites, politicians, and other worldly guests. Her exquisite furnishings and objects reflected her passion for collecting the decorative and fine arts of imperial Russia and eighteenth-century France. The opulent dining services of the tsarist and French courts were displayed throughout her mansion. In addition to dining, guests at her table “enjoyed a visual feast created by sumptuous Sèvres services, glistening sterling silver, Russian imperial services, and lace tablecloths, among many other items from her collection.” For the upcoming exhibition, a number of interior designers were invited to create a range of presentations using Hillwood’s remarkable collection as the source for a display of historic tables on view in the forty-four-foot dining room and the adjacent breakfast room. The special exhibition space in the dacha houses the tables fashioned by renowned interior designers to generate a conversation between past and contemporary design.
Historic Tudor Place in Georgetown will celebrate Earth Day and Arbor Daywith a Plant Sale & Picnicon April 22.Visitors can spend an afternoon exploring the estate’s historic gardens and take advantage of a once-a-year opportunity to enjoy a picnic on the grounds. The annual Plant Sale will feature heirloom and native sun-to-shade perennials, as well as tropical and house plants. Herbs and other edible plants will be featured this year.Purchases at the Plant Sale will support conservation and education at Tudor Place.
Image below: A view of a previous Earth Day & Arbor Day at Tudor Place.
All Hallows Guild at Washington National Cathedral will present the 79th Annual Flower Mart on May 4 & 5.Washington Embassies and their floral designers will again install displays that highlight each country’s natural and cultural heritage in the nave of the Cathedral. Spring plants for your garden will be available for purchase, and there will be treasures in the White Elephant Tent, plus a wide array of merchandise at over 80 boutique booths. Rides on the Antique Carousel, which dates back to around 1890, are popular. There’s also an array of games and carnival rides. Inside the Cathedral’s Bethlehem Chapel, Master Puppeteers will present their delightful puppet show. Terry Bender, the organ grinder, will entertain the crowds on South Road. Entertainers will perform on the main stage in front of the Cathedral (or inside in the event of rain). There will be a wide-ranging array of talented singers, dancers, musicians, and choral groups. The popular Washington Revels will ring in May and close out the Flower Mart on Saturday afternoon.
Image below:A view of a previous Flower Mart, with the historic Carousel in the foreground
The Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association (MVLA), the private non-profit organization that owns and operates George Washington’s Mount Vernon, has reopened the Mansion after having closed it in early February for scheduled annual preservation work.
PLEASE NOTE: There will be no more DC Design House presentations. The nonprofit that had overseen the running of the annual showhouse each October for ten years, voted unanimously in February, 2018 to disband after raising $290,000 during the 2017 DC Design House - and more than $2 million in 10 years. The annual Design House had been highly-regarded by design professionals, realtors and members of the general public with an interest in design. The 2017 Design House featured a 23-room house in Potomac, Maryland. Twenty-three designers decorated the spaces, and there were four boutiques, a Decade of Design Celebration and special events throughout the month in the home’s ballroom – plus a café onsite. Proceeds from the house tour benefited the Children’s National Health System.
National Museum of Natural History opened The Garden Lounge on the 2nd Floor in late 2017.The lounge is an interior garden rest and recharge area for visitors. “There are live plants and a relaxing atmosphere with botany content as a frame. Bright sunlight, enhanced seating and designated outlets for charging mobile devices welcome visitors to the space. Content focuses on stories of plants—their history, their diversity, and how they disperse and grow. Though the primary function of this space is to give visitors a break from the hubbub of the museum, these botany themes help fill in an important and underrepresented part of the story of natural history.”