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Brooklyn Botanic Garden Announces Spring 2014 Programming
by BBG
March 10, 2014

Brooklyn Botanic Garden (BBG) welcomes the spring 2014 season with a calendar of events and programming for all ages. As winter thaws in late February and March, visitors can find early-spring blossoms across the Garden, including witch-hazels, magnolias, daffodils, and forsythia. Throughout April, BBG is awash in the blooms and scents of lilacs, wisteria, and the Garden’s renowned collection of flowering cherry trees. The vibrant colors of azaleas in the Osborne Garden, roses in the Cranford Rose Garden, wildflowers in the Native Flora Garden, tree peonies near the Japanese Hill-and-Pond Garden, and bluebells in Bluebell Wood delight visitors in May and June. See what’s in bloom now and throughout the year at

Beginning in the spring, BBG celebrates the 100th anniversary of its beloved Children’s Garden with Let’s Grow!, a lineup of public festivities and educational programs for children, families, and adults. Gardening, cooking, and exploring nature with children are tied thematically throughout BBG events all season.

Sakura Matsuri, BBG’s annual celebration of Japanese culture, takes place this year on April 26 and 27 as the culmination of Hanami, the cherry blossom season. This NYC rite of spring presents the best in traditional and contemporary Japanese culture, in homage to the most diverse collection of flowering cherry trees in the country.

BBG’s popular gardening symposium, Making Brooklyn Bloom, returns for the 33rd year on March 8, kicking off the borough’s spring gardening season. This year’s keynote address will be delivered by urban community gardener and food justice advocate Karen Washington. Now in its 61st year, BBG’s highly anticipated annual Plant Sale takes place April 30 and May 1 (Members’ Preview on April 29), offering one-stop shopping for plants, expert advice for gardeners of all levels, and free talks by BBG garden curators.

Further information on these and other spring 2014 programs at BBG can be found below or by contacting For high-resolution images, please visit

MAKING BROOKLYN BLOOM: Sowing Connections, Growing Gardeners Saturday, March 8 | 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Now in its 33rd year, Making Brooklyn Bloom has become Brooklyn’s annual kickoff of the spring gardening season, with a full day of free activities and information on sustainable horticulture for the gardening public. The event offers hands-on workshops taught by community gardeners, BBG staff, and other greening experts. Exhibitors from regional greening organizations present innovative and sustainable gardening techniques for home and community gardeners.

In celebration of the 100th anniversary of BBG’s Children’s Garden, Making Brooklyn Bloom’s 2014 programming focuses on intergenerational gardening, with some workshops open to families. The 2014 Making Brooklyn Bloom Wilbur A. Levin keynote address will be delivered by Karen Washington, urban community gardener and food justice advocate. Registration for workshops is on a first-come, first-served basis. For more information, visit

HANAMI: Spring 2014, pending budburst Hanami, the season of cherry blossom viewing, is one of the most magical times of year at BBG, when the Garden’s iconic collection of more than 200 Japanese flowering cherries buds, blossoms, and finally creates an exquisite pink carpet as the delicate petals fall to the ground. Keep an eye on BBG’s CherryWatch blossom status map for the onset of Hanami—when the first blossoms are spotted in the Garden. For more information, visit

SAKURA MATSURI: Celebrating Japanese Culture at BBG Saturday, April 26 & Sunday, April 27 | 10 a.m.–6 p.m Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s legendary cherry blossom festival, Sakura Matsuri—popularly referred to as NYC’s rite of spring and the nation’s largest event in a public garden, is a thrilling tribute to the Garden’s astonishing spring botanical display. Sakura Matsuri features over 60 performances, demonstrations, and exhibits that highlight the best of traditional and contemporary Japanese culture. For more information, visit

PLANT SALE Wednesday, April 30, 9 a.m.–8 p.m. & Thursday, May 1, 9 a.m.–Noon | Cherry Esplanade BBG’s annual benefit plant sale returns, presenting the largest selection of affordable, high-quality plants in the metropolitan area, available with expert help from seasoned gardeners. More than 20,000 plants—ranging from the tried-and-true to the new and different—will be for sale in a tented and open space under the ornamental cherry trees on BBG’s Cherry Esplanade. Over two days, thousands of plant lovers will take advantage of the sale’s incredible values and expert gardening advice from the Garden’s Horticulture staff. A special Members’ Preview takes place Tuesday, April 29, 4:30–8 p.m., and the annual Children’s Plant Sale (preregistration required) takes place Wednesday, April 30, and Thursday, May 1, 10 a.m.–1:30 p.m., on Magnolia Plaza.

CHILDREN’S GARDEN 100TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION: Let’s Grow! Since its founding in 1914, the Children’s Garden has been the cornerstone of BBG’s educational programming–teaching gardening and plant science, instilling healthy eating habits, and fostering a lifelong connection to the environment. BBG honors this legacy with Let’s Grow!—a series of programs and initiatives from March through October that allow visitors of all ages to celebrate the Garden’s history and engage with its future. For more information, please visit

Expanded Discovery Workshops and Nature Adventure Walks for Children Tuesday–Sunday, April–October To ensure that each child who visits in 2014 has a chance to fully experience the Garden, BBG is offering a greatly expanded weekday and weekend program of free Discovery Workshops and Nature Adventure Walks from April through October. BBG’s Children’s Education staff lead drop-in interactive workshops and tours for families following seasonal themes. Further details on the workshops and tours will be announced later in the spring.

Children’s Garden Insider Tours May-October (preregistration required) Historically, the Children’s Garden has been open only to children participating in its season-long classes. As part of the centennial celebration, for the first time BBG is allowing families, adults, and children not enrolled in the program to tour the Children’s Garden. Further details on the tour will be announced later in the spring.

Children’s Garden 100th Anniversary Spring Parade: Saturday, May 10 Children’s Garden Celebration on Cherry Esplanade: Saturday, June 7 On Saturday, May 10, Children’s Garden participants and their families celebrate spring planting with Parade Day, a lively procession through BBG’s grounds to the Children’s Garden. A day of festivities for families and visitors of all ages takes place on Saturday, June 7, featuring live musical performances by children’s groups on Cherry Esplanade. More details on both events will be announced later in the spring.

EXHIBITION: 100 Years and Growing: A Century in the Children’s Garden On view: May 10–September 21 Reception: Saturday, June 7 As part of the centennial celebrations, BBG presents 100 Years and Growing: A Century in the Children’s Garden, a special exhibition on the rich history of the Children’s Garden and the education programs that have grown out of it over the last century. Historic images, artifacts from the archives, and visitor-contributed stories, recipes, and artwork illustrate the forward-thinking philosophy of the Children’s Garden’s founders. A series of Garden-wide informational signs and educational plantings in the Annual Border display accompany the gallery exhibition and complement special programs throughout the Garden.

CONTINUING EDUCATION: SPRING CLASS HIGHLIGHTS Adult continuing education courses at Brooklyn Botanic Garden foster lifelong learning and creativity. BBG’s Certificate in Horticulture is offered through a rigorous program of courses taught by BBG staff and other experts. Shorter courses in gardening, art, cookery, wellness, and more offer a chance to engage your passions or discover something new. Spring highlights include the following classes and workshops:

Native Trees in Small Spaces You can grow beautiful and ecologically beneficial trees in limited space. Learn about a wide array of small native trees that are suitable for our region and provide important ecological services, including food and cover for pollinators and other wildlife. Get the information you need to source and correctly plant the best small native trees this spring. The class includes a tour of the Native Flora Garden. Sunday, April 6 | 2–5 p.m. | Register at

Rooftop Container Gardening Want to start a rooftop garden or properly care for an existing one? This workshop gives you the tools to get going! Learn about technical aspects like weight considerations, irrigation, and building materials, as well as soil, suitable plants, design, and proper care. Sunday, March 2 | 10:30 a.m.–4 p.m. | Register at Sunday, April 13 | 10:30 a.m.–4 p.m. | Register at

Growing Food in the Shade Think you can’t grow edibles because you have a shady garden? Think again! There are plenty of delicious and unusual plants that thrive in woodland conditions. Learn which plants grow best in partial to full shade and how to care for them from planting to harvest. Sunday, April 6 | 10 a.m.–1 p.m. | Register at

Family Block Printing with Foam Create your own image inspired by your visit to the Garden, and learn the process of block printing with easy-to-use foam plates. Families work together to create colorful block prints and discuss plants in terms of their visual shapes, designs, and patterns. All materials provided. Saturday, April 5 | 1–3 p.m. | Register at

SPRING GALA Thursday, May 29 (by invitation only) BBG’s annual Spring Gala will take place on Thursday, May 29. On the occasion of the Children’s Garden 100th anniversary this year, BBG honors Joe and Carol Reich, founders of Brooklyn’s Beginning with Children school, with the BBG Visionary Award for their work in education reform in NYC and beyond. Late-night revelers can also join the popular BBG Spring Gala After Party with dessert and dancing. General Information Founded in 1910, Brooklyn Botanic Garden (BBG) is an independent nonprofit institution committed to education, research, and the display of horticulture. BBG serves communities in New York City and internationally through its world-class gardens, extensive research collections, and numerous educational and community programs. Situated on 52 acres in the heart of Brooklyn, the Garden is home to over 12,000 kinds of plants and hosts more than 750,000 visitors annually.

Brooklyn Botanic Garden is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, and from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. The Garden is closed on Mondays except public holidays. General admission is $10 for adults and $5 for senior citizens (65 and older) and students with ID. Children under 12, all school groups, and Garden members are admitted free at all times. Visitor entrances are at 990 Washington Avenue and Eastern Parkway. For directions, please visit

Learn what’s happening at Brooklyn Botanic Garden at, read the Garden’s blog at, and see photos of current botanical highlights at

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