The U.S. Botanic Garden will exhibit The USBG at 200: Deeply Rooted, Branching Outward, February 20-October 15 in theWest and East Galleries. The Garden has shared the beauty and usefulness of plants with the world for 200 years. The two-part exhibit will offer a journey of plant exploration, plant science interactives, three-dimensional sights, "infamous smells," the rich history and the developing future of the USBG.
The U.S. Botanic Garden (USBG) will display the annual orchid show, titled Discover the World of Orchids, in the Conservatory, February 28-May 3. The show will celebrate the Garden’s bicentennial year, plant exploration and the diversity of orchids found throughout the world. A natural Manila hemp rope sculpture installation by artist Susan Beallor-Snyder will be featured amidst the tropical plants of the Garden Court. Thousands of orchid blooms throughout the Conservatory will showcase the USBG and Smithsonian Gardens’ extensive plant collection.
The U.S. Botanic Garden is celebrating the 200th anniversary of the garden’s original 1820 charter with creation of a custom sculpture by renowned stickwork artistPatrick Dougherty. The sculpture will be on display throughout the 2020 celebratory year. Dougherty is known around the world for “his installations woven from plant materials which celebrate nature. The USBG began the project by harvesting saplings of invasive plants from area locations, and volunteers, and USBG employees worked with Dougherty and his team for over three weeks to create the unique installation. Saharah Moon Chapotin, U.S. Botanic Garden executive director, has commented that “We hope visitors will explore the installation, think about the many ways we interact with plants throughout each day, and be inspired by both the beauty and function plants give to us.” Throughout the 2020 bicentennial year, the USBG will present a special exhibit celebrating plant exploration and the Garden’s history dating back to founding fathers George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and James Madison, as well as unique programs, workshops, lectures, festivals, tours, and more. Image below: Artist Patrick Dougherty weaving the installation at the U.S. Botanic Garden.
March is Orchid Month at Hillwood, and it's an ideal time to tour Hillwood’s greenhouses. Marjorie Post constructed greenhouses to hold her extensive collection of exotic orchids, as well as cut flowers grown for floral arrangements throughout the mansion.
Visitors can learn about Post’s infatuation with orchids, and the exotic blooms and fragrances on display. Tickets are distributed at the visitor center upon opening each day. A twenty-minute tour is limited to ten visitors and meets in the visitor center conservatory. Drew Asbury, who is Hillwood’s horticulturist and volunteer manager, is responsible for the greenhouses, the cutting garden, and the horticulture volunteer program.
The new Cultivate Magazine highlighting Brookside Gardens’fall-winter programming is now available and can be downloaded at https://s3.amazonaws.com/
Alexandria Waterfront Park
The City of Alexandria has unveiled the concept designs for the next temporary art installation coming to the city's Waterfront Park in 2020. The site-specific design, titled Wrought, Knit, Labors, Legacies, was created by Olalekan Jeyifous, who is a Nigerian born, Brooklyn-based artist and architect. The exhibit will be the second in the Site See: New Views in the Old Town annual public art series, and will be on display from March to November 2020. City Manager Mark Jinks has commented that “The Site See public art series is a key asset that showcases our waterfront, open spaces and gathering places.” Jeyifous’s concept “frames Alexandria’s African American history through the lens of the city’s industrial and merchant history from the 17th to 20th centuries. Once a prosperous port city that was home to one of the largest domestic slave trading firms in the country, Alexandria was a major center for shipping and manufacturing with an economy inextricably tied to the work of enslaved and free African Americans.” The inaugural Site See: New Views installation, Mirror Mirror by SOFTlab, drew thousands of people to Alexandria in 2019.