Beginning Watercolor – Virtual

North Carolina Botanical Garden 100 Old Mason Farm Road, Chapel Hill, NC

In this class, students are introduced to watercolor and learn basics techniques such as flat and graded washes. Students learn to paint various simple shapes (spheres and cylinders) and a small botanical subject.


Conservation Gardening 101: Landscaping with Native Plants

North Carolina Botanical Garden 100 Old Mason Farm Road, Chapel Hill, NC

Conservation Gardening 101: Landscaping with Native Plants is a certificate series designed to provide home gardeners and emerging landscape professionals with foundational concepts of landscape design, native species selection, implementation and maintenance of compellingly beautiful and ecologically productive native plant gardens based on conservation principles. This program will cover six conservation gardening topics through lectures, handouts, and instructor-led treks through the Garden. Participants who attend all six sessions and complete a final evaluation will receive a Certificate of Participation from the Garden. Conservation gardening topics included in this series are Landscape Design Principles, Native Plant Selection - Perennials, Native Plant Selection – Shrubs and Trees, Weeding, Mulching, and Seasonal Maintenance, Landscape Installation, and Pruning and Long-Term Maintenance of Woody Plants.


Mixed Media: Botanicals in Watercolor, Colored Pencil, and Pen and Ink

This class is designed to increase your skills and confidence in the use of the various art media taught at the Garden. The instructor demonstrates techniques to combine watercolor, ink and colored pencils to create vibrant botanical paintings. Students receive one-on-one instruction to evolve their own unique drawing and painting.


Penny’s Bend: A Half-Day Field Trip

North Carolina Botanical Garden 100 Old Mason Farm Road, Chapel Hill, NC

Penny’s Bend Nature Preserve is an 84-acre site that protects numerous rare plant species. It is surrounded on three sides by the Eno River in eastern Durham County, North Carolina. This half day field trip will include a visit to distinct plant communities including a remnant Piedmont prairie, rich mesic and alluvial forests, and dry shortleaf pine-dominated bluffs. Rare species found on the Preserve include the smooth purple coneflower (Echinacea laevigata), eastern prairie blue wild indigo (Baptisia minor var. aberrans), hoary puccoon (Lithospermum canescens), and Dutchman’s breeches (Dicentra cucullaria).


Annual Evelyn McNeill Sims Native Plant Lecture – Architects of Abundance: Indigenous Regenerative Land Management and the Excavation of Hidden History

North Carolina Botanical Garden 100 Old Mason Farm Road, Chapel Hill, NC

Dr. Lyla June Johnston is an Indigenous musician, scholar, and community organizer of Diné (Navajo), Tsétsêhéstâhese (Cheyenne) and European lineages. Her research focuses on the ways in which pre-colonial Indigenous Nations gardened large regions of Turtle Island (aka the Americas) to produce abundant food systems for humans and non-humans. Contrary to popular belief, Indigenous Peoples leveraged immense influence on their surrounding lands, fires, and waters in ways that could heal our planet today. Whether it's periodically burning grassland ecosystems with low severity fires to maintain habitat for deer, buffalo, antelope, etc, or building intertidal rock walls that catch sediment and warmer waters to expand clam habitat, native people have a number of innovative strategies for scaling habitat for edible plants and animals whom they often view as relatives. Her work translates this poorly understood history to the Western world and highlights the connection between Indigenous land ethics, decolonial narratives, carbon sequestration, biodiversity augmentation, anthropogenic habitat expansion, and regional ecosystems connectivity. These success of the systems is believed to be due to their underlying value system of respect, reverence, responsibility and reciprocity.

Principles of Conservation Biology

This course is intended for an experienced audience and introduces the principles of biodiversity and conservation. Students learn about rare plants, conservation genetics, ecological restoration, conservation landscaping, and preserve design.


Identifying and Controlling Invasive Plants

This course is intended for a broad audience. Through classroom and field demonstrations, students learn the tools and methods needed to identify invasive species and effectively remove them. We'll discuss the most prominent invasive plants in North Carolina and how to identify them by habit and growth form. Then, we'll cover integrated methods for controlling invasive plants on multiple scales.


Sketching Landscapes in the Garden

North Carolina Botanical Garden 100 Old Mason Farm Road, Chapel Hill, NC

Have you ever wanted to loosely capture what you see in a sketch while out on a hike or sitting in your own backyard?
In this class, the North Carolina Botanical Garden will become our classroom as we experience the healing benefits of sketching while out in nature. You can lower your stress levels and promote mental calmness as we sketch the landscape before us. This class is about loosely capturing the essence of the natural world, so don’t worry if you don’t have a lot of drawing experience as we won’t be focusing on all the little details. This class is for all skill levels.


Twilight Thursdays: Spring Season

North Carolina Botanical Garden 100 Old Mason Farm Road, Chapel Hill, NC

Every Thursday evening from April 6 to June 15, we’re staying open until 7 p.m. so you can enjoy our display gardens after work. Our exhibit hall and Garden Shop will be open, and you’re welcome to bring a picnic to enjoy outdoors – we have lots of benches and picnic tables, plus open lawn...


Second Saturday NCBG Tour – April

From March to November, join our skilled volunteer Garden Guides on the second Saturday of the month for a guided tour of the North Carolina Botanical Garden. Each month offers a glimpse into what’s happening in our unique native plant gardens – from spring wildflowers to fall color – and what makes the NCBG one of the premier conservation gardens in the US. Tours are one (1) hour and space is limited! Please register each member of your party separately.