As a garden focused on conserving the biodiversity of southeastern native plants, we recognize that just as biodiversity is critical to a healthy ecosystem, diversity in people and perspectives makes our organization and community stronger. 

NCBG is committed to creating an environment in our gardens and natural areas where everyone’s voice is heard and everyone feels safe and welcome.

Indigenous Land Acknowledgement Statement

The lands we steward are the ancestral homeland of several Siouan-speaking tribes and a part of the recognized home of the Occaneechi Band of the Saponi Nation. We celebrate the many Native people, who, to this day, meet, gather, walk, hike, and engage with the habitats and gardens on this land, and we honor their Native ancestors and Elders, past, present, and future.  

We are grateful for the engagement of Indigenous people with the Garden across its history and strive to be of continued value to all Native communities in North Carolina. We invite you to join us in learning the history about the land we each steward and supporting Native artists and entrepreneurs and organizations advocating for American Indian communities, such as the UNC American Indian Center.

North Carolina Botanical Garden's

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Strategic Plan

In April 2019, the Diversity and Inclusion Committee was formed at the North Carolina Botanical Garden with the goal of improving the diversity of staff, volunteers, board members, and event attendees.  The committee spent several months gathering resources, reviewing assessments made of diversity at NCBG, conducting an all-staff Intercultural Development Inventory, and consulting with professional staff at North Carolina State University to develop this strategic plan. At the one-year mark, the committee has created this three-year strategic plan. It will be used to advance and enhance the mission of the North Carolina Botanical Garden as a leader in native plant conservation and education in the southeastern United States. 

Racism in Conservation and Environmentalism

Our statement in June 2020 in support of the Black Lives Matter movement was met with a lot of support…and a few questions, especially about framing environmentalism and land conservation from a white perspective. In response, we plan to publish a series of articles on this topic. This first article is a brief introduction to racism issues in conservation and the Garden’s history.

Rekindling Ancestral Connections

The North Carolina Native Ethnobotany Project has worked to bridge the gap between traditional knowledge of Native Americans and an increasingly disconnected modern lifestyle. What was initially meant to be a pilot project with a few North Carolina tribes – the Coharie, Waccamaw Siouan, and Haliwa-Saponi – has sparked new community projects and a book highlighting around 70 species of plants those communities want to regain access to and restore to their landscapes and gardens.

Jesse Mason Cemetery

Near Jordan Lake lies the cemetery of the Jesse Mason family, the father of James Pleasant Mason whose Mason Farm is now our Mason Farm Biological Reserve. A group of community members, Garden tour guides, and Nick Adams, Battle Park manager, visited the cemetery in November to get a better grasp of the history of the Garden. Of special interest were the graves of enslaved people, unmarked and outside the iron fence that surrounds the family cemetery, and the one inside that fence.

American Indian Cultural Garden

The UNC American Indian Center, along with the Garden and other stakeholders, collaborated to determine priorities, elements, visual preferences, and possible locations for a future American Indian Cultural Garden on UNC's campus. A report of these findings is available online.