The U.S. Botanic Garden is exhibiting The USBG at 200: Deeply Rooted, Branching Outward, thru 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 offers 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. 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.
Historic Tudor Place in Georgetown will have their Annual Earth Day Plant Sale & Picnic on April 26 – the 50th anniversary of Earth Day. Visitors can enjoy a picnic in the garden and shop for plants. The Plant Sale will feature heirloom and native sun-to-shade perennials, herbs and other edible plants for the garden, as well as tropicals and houseplants. Purchases at the Plant Sale support conservation and education at Tudor Place. The presenters advise: “Bring your own picnic and blanket. See you rain or shine!”
The Garden Club of Virginia Historic Garden Week will begin in Olde Town Alexandria on April 18. The Old Town Tour will include refreshments at the Old Presbyterian Meeting House, and a marketplace at the historic Athenaeum. The tour ticket allows access to several nearby historic gardens and properties, including two Garden Club of Virginia restoration projects: George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate and Gardens and Green Spring Gardens. To read about the Olde Town tour, visit www.vagardenweek.org/main/tourdetails?id=434
The tour will continue Statewide thru April 25, at some 250 of Virginia's most beautiful gardens, homes and historic landmarks. The tour will offer a unique opportunity to see unforgettable gardens at the peak of Virginia's springtime color, plus over 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, plus a research fellowship program, and a Garden Club of Virginia Centennial Project with Virginia State Parks.
Image below: A garden featured in a previous tour.
The annual Georgetown House Tour, sponsored by St. John's Episcopal Church, will take place on April 25. The tours date back to 1930 and always include several of Georgetown’s most beautiful homes. The houses featured are within easy walking distance of one another and can be visited at one's own pace and in any preferred order. The tour price includes a House Tour Magazine full of useful information that serves also as admission to each home, and includes a map showing the locations of the houses, along with historic information and background on each house. The tour also includes a Parish Tea and Panel Discussion at Blake Hall at historic St. John’s Church.
Friends of the National Arboretum (FONA) will have the annual Garden Fair and Plant Sale on April 25 & 26. The event is a favorite of area gardeners - from novice to expert. The offerings will include rare and hard to find plants as well as tried-and-true favorites. Expert advice will be available on-site to guide customers through selecting plants “for that tricky spot in the garden.” The event is one of FONA’s most important fundraisers to help support the Arboretum.
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.