Botanical Classes We Love + Winter Garden Tips

January 15, 2020

If you’re like us, you’ve been inundated with masterclasses popping-up daily in your inbox, but not all are created equal. Our latest discovery is the intriguing line up of educational classes at the New York Botanical Garden (NYBG), which has been serving up educational opportunities to the public for the last 101 years, with their very first class given after World War I. We noticed a course for almost every creative discipline—art, gardening, culinary, even social media—and love that they’re all related to the natural world.

Need a refresher on floral or landscape design? Want to press wild plants? Paint botanical watercolors? Take better iPhone photos of flora and fauna? These classes are all here. Did you ever want to weave a willow obelisk often seen in English gardens? It’s possible and may even create a lifelong hobby. The NYBG also offers an advanced Certificate Program if you’re changing or enhancing your career.

A visitor enjoying the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory at the NYBG.

Upcoming Events on Our Radar:

  • “Wake Up Your Garden Saturday”: a seminar on February 8th chockfull of information on prepping your garden for Spring.
  • A cooking demonstration on February 14th by celebrated UK chef, Aaron Bertelsen, who will make dishes from his new cookbook, Grow Fruits & Vegetables in Pots.
  • The Winter Lecture Series: The Garden Came First with celebrated designers and gardeners Deborah Nevins, Isabel Bannerman and Sean Hogan on January 30, February 27 and March 26.
  • For a complete catalog of events, visit NYBG.com
A student in the midst of a flower arranging class.

We asked Daryl Beyers, the NYBG Adult Education Gardening Program Coordinator, for a few tips on growing plants in the winter. He is the author of The New Gardener’s Handbook, which is available on pre-order from Amazon and will be officially released on February 18, 2020.

Indoor Plants

  1. During the winter months in Northern latitudes, houseplants tend to go dormant because of decreased sunlight. Cut watering in half and avoid feeding to accommodate this slowed growth.
  2. Wait until spring to repot plants because repotting is traumatic on your plants’ roots.
  3. You may see significant leaf drop from some plants, but as long as the stems are green and you see plump buds, the plant is fine and will grow leaves next season.

Outdoor Plants

  1. After a heavy snowfall, go outside and knock the snow off broadleaf evergreens. This will prevent branches from breaking.
  2. Water potted trees and shrubs during winter thaws when the temps are in the 40s and above.
  3. You may have already recycled last year’s Christmas tree, but you can always cut branches off discarded trees and lay the boughs on top of your herbaceous perennials to insulate them from the winter cold.


Have you seen Schumacher’s new Classics collection?

They’re archival treasures that celebrate the natural world, reimagined for today’s tastes.


A fabulous cape of chrysanthemums appeared in a 2016 show by Dutch fashion designer Edwin Oudshoorn, in collaboration with avant-garde Amsterdam-based florists The Wunderkammer. Melody Lieftink

Do You Know Your Floral History?


Three Early Female Illustrators Who Changed the Way We See the Natural World >