Category Archives: lecture

Wednesday, November 5, 1:30 pm – Food of the Gods: Chocolate Production from Bean to Bar

This Wednesday, November 5 talk by Wellesley College Botanic Garden fellow Katie Goodall will explore the journey of chocolate from tropical landscapes to consumers all over the world.  Focusing on Latin America, she will discuss cacao’s botanical origins, cultural history, cultivation methods, and their ecological impacts.  And what’s a chocolate talk without a tasting?  Be sure to come (1:30 pm at the Visitor’s Center of the Botanic Garden) ready to savor the flavors of local specialty chocolates. Image from  WCBG Friends free, nonmembers $10.  Register by calling 781-283-3094 or email

Thursday, November 6, 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm – American Canopy: Trees, Forests, and the Making of a Nation

Author, lawyer, Yale University doctoral candidate and historian Eric Rutkow digs deep into American history to show how trees were essential to the early years of the republic and indivisible from the country’s rise as both an empire and a civilization. He will share stories set in New England and beyond, in which trees—as symbols of liberty, community, and civilization—are perhaps the loudest silent figures in America’s complicated history. Early presidents, conservationists, politicians, and politics resurface alongside the trees and forests that supported independence and fueled this country’s westward expansion. Eric Rutkow’s book, American Canopy: Trees, Forests, and the Making of a Nation (Scribner, 2012), will be available for purchase and signing. The event takes place Thursday, November 6, from 7 – 8:30 in the Hunnewell Building of the Arnold Arboretum, and is $5 for Arboretum members, $10 for nonmembers. Register at

Friday, November 14, 9:00 am – 3:30 pm – Castle Hill Casino Restoration Seminar

New England Landscape Design and History Association (NELDHA) and The Trustees of Reservations (TTOR) are pleased to collaborate on a Preservation Seminar that focuses on the Casino restoration at the Country Place Era Estate at Castle Hill in Ipswich, Massachusetts. The seminar is on November 14, 2014, at the Great House at Castle Hill from 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Join them for an in depth program in the Great House with TTOR staff and other professionals who will explain the issues, process and decision making involved. TTOR Northeast Region’s Operations Manager Robert Murray will lead a tour of the restored Casino. After lunch, a distinguished panel will answer questions and discuss issues with a particular emphasis on hardscape, ornamentation and adaptive reuse of this incredible space. The panelists include Robert Murray; Lucinda Brockway, TTOR Program Director for Cultural Resources; James Younger, AIA, LEED AP, TTOR Director of Structural Resources and Technology; Susan Hill Dolan, TTOR Curator and Cultural Resources Specialist for the Northeast Region; Robert Levitre of Consigli Construction, and distinguished landscape architect and preservationist, Marion Pressley, FASLA, and past speaker for the Garden Club of the Back Bay.

In 2014, TTOR continued the restoration of the grounds at Castle Hill, a National Historic Landmark. This year, 99 years after its creation, the crumbling Casino—the epitome of a Country Place Era estate feature for entertainment and leisure—was restored. The casino was designed in the Italian Renaissance Revival style by landscape architect Arthur Shurcliff, in collaboration with the Boston architectural firm Shepley, Rutan, and Coolidge, 1914 – 1915. Although sited on the fabulous grand allee, it is elegantly hidden within the iconic view from the Great House. The Casino predates the existing Great House designed by David Adler, 1924 – 1928. For this project, TTOR used original documentation and materials wherever possible.

The seminar is $70 for NELDHA members, TTOR members and current students and $85 for non-members. We are offering an early registration discount of $10 for registrations received before October 14, 2014. The Registration & Refund Deadline is November 8, 2014. Space is limited. Visit to register.

casino ballroom 1915

Thursday, November 13, 7:00 pm – Gardner Museum Landscape Lecture: Teresa Galí-Izard

On Thursday, November 13, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum will host Teresa Galí-Izard, principal of Arquitectura Agronomia, a landscape architecture firm in Barcelona. Through her work, she explores new languages and forms, working with living materials, and applying contemporary dynamics and management. She has been involved in some of the most important landscape architecture projects in Europe, including the new urbanization of Passeig de Sant Joan in Barcelona and the restoration of the nearby Vall d’en Joan landfill, which won the European Prize for Urban Public Space in 2004. Galí-Izard is the author of The Same Landscapes: Ideas and Interpretation (2005), and co-edited Jacques Simon: Los otros paisajes, Ideas y reflexiones sobre el territorio (2012) with Daniella Collafranceschi.

The Isabella Stewart Gardner’s Landscape Lectures begin at 7 pm in Calderwood Hall. Lectures include Museum admission and require a ticket; tickets can be reserved online at, in person at the door, or by phone: 617 278 5156. Museum admission: adults $15, seniors $12, students $5, free for members.

When a lecture sells out, the Museum will offer a limited number of obstructed view seats the night of the event via a signup sheet at the admissions desk. The signup sheet will become available at the desk at 6 pm. We will make every attempt to seat everyone but cannot guarantee a seat once we are at capacity. Seats will be assigned 5 minutes prior to the lecture time. These obstructed view seats will be free of charge.

Wednesday, October 29, 10:00 am – Nature in the City and Stewarding Our Native Ecology

The Annual Meeting of The Boston Committee of the Garden Club of America will take place Wednesday, October 29, at The Country Club, Clyde Street, Brookline, beginning with coffee and registration at 10:00 am, and the business meeting at 10:30 am, followed by a keynote speech by Peter Del Tredici on Nature in the City and Stewarding Our Native Ecology. Dr. Del Tredici is Senior Research Scientist, Arnold Arboretum, and Adjunct Associate Professor of Landscape Architecture, Harvard Graduate School of Design.

“My research interests are wide ranging and mainly involve the interaction between woody plants and their environment. Over the course of thirty plus years at the Arnold Arboretum, I have worked with a number of plants, most notably Ginkgo biloba, conifers in the genera Tsuga and Sequoia, various magnolias, and several Stewartia species (family Theaceae). In all of my work, I attempt to integrate various aspects of the botany and ecology of a given species with the horticultural issues surrounding its propagation and cultivation. This fusion of science and practice has also formed the basis of my teaching at the Harvard Graduate School of Design (since 1992), especially as it relates to understanding the impacts of climate change and urbanization on plants in both native and designed landscapes. Most recently, the focus of my research has expanded to the subject of spontaneous urban vegetation which resulted in the publication of Wild Urban Plants of the Northeast: A Field Guide (Cornell University Press, 2010).”

The program is open to members of the Garden Clubs which comprise The Boston Committee ( who will receive written invitations with information on attendance fees.  If you are not a member, email for more information.  Image from

Arnold Arboretum Director’s Lecture Series 2015

Each year, Director William (Ned) Friedman and the Arnold Arboretum present the Director’s Lecture Series, featuring nationally recognized experts addressing an array of topics related to Earth’s biodiversity and evolutionary history, the environment, conservation biology, and key social issues associated with current science. Lectures take place in the Hunnewell Building Lecture Hall. Parking will be available in front of the building and along the Arborway. These free lectures become completely subscribed early, and right now, through December 15, Arboretum members may register online prior to general registration thereafter. Visit to sign up.

The schedule is as follows: On Monday, January 12, hear Ned Friedman himself discuss Mutants in Our Midst: Darwin, Horticulture, and Evolution. Photographer Rachel Sussman speaks on Monday, March 2 on The Oldest Living Things in the World, Peter Raven, PhD and President Emeritus of the Missouri Botanical Garden comes on Monday, March 23 to lecture on China, Biodiversity, and the Global Environment, and finally, on Monday April 20, hear Richard Lazarus, Howard and Katherine Aibel Professor of Law at Harvard University, who will discuss Environmental Lawlessness.

Saturday, October 25, 10:00 am – 12:00 noon – Magical Mixes

Join Jacqueline van der Kloet at the Berkshire Botanical Gardens on Saturday, October 25, from 10 – 12, for a talk on plant combinations in her garden designs. She will focus on how she combines bulbs, perennials, flowering shrubs and trees in a naturalistic garden style. Using a case-study approach, she will suggest perennials and spring flowering bulbs and how to use them in all kinds of situations: private gardens small and large, estates, public parks and exhibitions. The program will include her inspirational lecture, a short break and time devoted to the technical “how to” aspects of her designs. She will answer all of your bulb questions and suggest solutions.

Jacqueline van der Kloet is an internationally known garden designer based in Weesp, Holland. She is known for her artistic combinations of bulbs, perennials and flowering shrubs and trees. Her designs for public, private and corporate clients are found throughout Europe. She designed displays, both in 2002 and 2012, for Floriade, the international exhibition of flowers and gardening, held every ten years in the Netherlands. She renovated the bulb plantings at the famous Keukenhof Gardens in Lisse, Netherlands, and has worked extensively with “New Wave” garden designer Piet Oudolf to create bulb planting schemes for three of America’s newest and most exciting public spaces: Millennial Park and the Lurie Garden in Chicago, Battery Park in New York City and the Seasonal Walk at the New York Botanical Garden. She has designed planting schemes at private gardens, including the Linden Allee at Martha Stewart’s Bedford, NY, estate.

BBG member price $30, nonmembers $35. Register at, or call 413-298-3926, x 15.

Saturday, October 18, 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm – Centennial Lecture by Cynthia Barton: History’s Daughter

Biographer Cynthia Barton relates a chronicle of Clara Endicott Sears’ life and details the influences leading to the creation of Fruitlands Museum from her book History’s Daughter: The Life of Clara Endicott Sears, Founder of Fruitlands Museum. The talk is the Museum’s Centennial Lecture, and will take place Saturday, October 18 at 1 pm.  Free with admission to the Museum, located at 102 Prospect Hill Road in Harvard.  For more information visit

Thursday, October 23, 6:00 pm – Sitting Down to Table: Visualizing the Daily Meal in a Pennsylvania Coal Town

Karen Metheny, scholar in food studies, anthropology, and archaeology, will explore ways that material culture can be combined with oral and historical sources to interpret the content, context, and significance of the daily meal. Using archaeological evidence of food consumption from her nineteenth-century coal town study, Dr. Metheny will discuss the significance of food sharing and commensality in the context of household stability and community formation. This free lecture, part of the Jacques Pepin Lecture Series at Boston University, will take place on Thursday, October 23 beginning at 6 pm in Room 117 at 808 Commonwealth Avenue.  For more information visit

Tuesday, October 14, 7:30 pm – Fossil Insects: Learning from the Past

On Tuesday, October 14th at 07:30 PM in room 101 of the Museum of Comparative Zoology, 26 Oxford Street in Cambridge, Ricardo Pérez de la Fuente of Harvard University will address the Cambridge Entomological Club about Fossil Insects: Learning from the past.

Insects are one of the main biological sources of environmental, ecological, and evolutionary information concerning life on land as archived in the geological record from ca. 400 million years ago. Although the study of extinct insects is challenging, it can be surprisingly similar to the study of extant specimens thanks to the discovery of fossils with exceptional preservation, like amber inclusions, and the use of new techniques. As the legacy of an old paleoentomological tradition that started with the classic works of Samuel H. Scudder, co-founder of the Cambridge Entomological Club and its journal Psyche, the Museum of Contemporary Zoology has one of the premier fossil insect collections worldwide, composed of more than 30,000 specimens and 3,000 types. But what can we really learn from fossil insects? And to what extent are they reliable? Together we will try to answer these and more questions in the forthcoming talk.

The meeting is free and open to the public. Snacks will be provided and you are also welcome to join Club members at 6:00 PM for an informal pre-meeting dinner at the Cambridge Common. For more information contact CEC Vice-President Shayla Salzman at

Saturday, November 1, 10:00 am – 4:00 pm – Project Handprint Symposium

Join Wellesley College faculty, alumnae, students, and Wellesley College Botanic Garden Friends for the second annual Project Handprint Symposium, exploring foor and water through lenses of environmental sustainability and justice, on Saturday, November 1, from 10 – 4 in the Tishman Commons, LuLu Chow Wang Campus Center.  Keynote talks with Q & A, small group facilitated discussions, posters on current projects, tours of the Edible Ecosystem Teaching Garden, and a panel discussion round out the day.  $20 registration includes lunch.  Additional donations enable students to attend free of charge.  Please call 781-283-3094 or email by October 20 to register.

Monday, October 20, 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm – America’s Founding Fruit: The Cranberry in a New Environment

The cranberry, Vaccinium macrocarpa, is one of only three cultivated fruits native to North America. The story of this perennial vine began as the glaciers retreated about fifteen thousand years ago. Through the centuries the cranberry has provided critical sustenance for humans, on land, at sea, and in times of war. It was even offered in a diplomatic gesture to King Charles II in 1677. Today, it is a powerful tool in the fight against various forms of cancer. Author Susan Playfair interviewed scientists studying the health benefits of cranberries, growers in several states, geneticists mapping the cranberry genome, a plant biologist who provided her with the first regression analysis of cranberry flowering times, and a migrant beekeeper to weave together the history and culture of the cranberry and assess the possible effects of climate change on this North American resource. America’s Founding Fruit will be available for purchase and signing after this October 20 lecture at the Arnold Arboretum beginning at 7 pm in the Hunnewell Building. Fee $5 Arboretum members, $10 nonmembers. Register online at

Saturday, October 25, 2:00 pm – Remembering North America’s Extinct Birds

Join the Harvard Museum of Natural History at 2 pm on Saturday, October 25 for a screening of The Lost Bird Project, a film that honors five extinct North American birds: the Labrador Duck, the Great Auk, the Heath Hen, the Carolina Parakeet, and the Passenger Pigeon. Directed by Deborah Dickson, the film follows sculptor Todd McGrain as he sets out to create large bronze memorials to these lost birds and to install them in the locations where they were last seen in the wild. A discussion with McGrain and Andy Stern, the executive producer of the film, will follow the screening. A book about the project will also be available for purchase at the museum store. Free with museum admission.
Haller Hall, enter at 26 Oxford Street. Free event parking available at the 52 Oxford Street Garage.

Wednesday, October 8, 6:30 pm – Kale, Glorious Kale

With the guidance of bestselling cookbook author Cathy Walthers and the stunning photography of Alison Shaw, every home cook can explore the multitude of ways this most healthy of foods can be made into delectable and satisfying meals. From Baked Eggs Over Kale in the morning to kale snacks and appetizers, salads, soups, side dishes and main courses like Pork Braised with Kale and Cider for dinner, Kale, Glorious Kale will be your complete guide to the greatest of green vegetables.

Catherine Walthers is an award-winning journalist and food writer. She has worked for the past 15 years as a private chef and cooking instructor in the Boston area and on Martha’s Vineyard. She is food editor of Martha’s Vineyard Magazine, and the author of Raising the Salad Bar, as well as co-author of Greens, Glorious Greens.

This event takes place at Kickstand Cafe, 594 Massachusetts Avenue in Arlington. Porter Square Books in Cambridge is  delighted to partner with Kickstand, cousin to Cafe Zing here in the store. Watch for more PSB at the ‘Stand events in 2015!

Thursday, October 16, 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm – The Origins and Legacy of the Catskill Forest Preserve

Dr. Paul K. Barten, Professor and Honors Program Director, Department of Environmental Conservation at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst will speak on Thursday, October 16, from 7 – 8:30 in the Hunnewell Building of the Arnold Arboretum on the topic of The Origins and Legacy of the Catskill Forest Preserve.  The Catskill Forest Preserve was established in 1885 and protected as “wild forest, forever” with an 1894 amendment to New York’s Constitution. This designation represented a major change in public opinion and political will as well as an early success for the fledgling conservation movement. The landscape paintings of Thomas Cole, Frederic Church, and other Hudson River School artists, the stirring fiction of Washington Irving and James Fenimore Cooper, and the writings of George Perkins Marsh and John Burroughs had a dramatic and formative influence on societal values and attitudes. This opened a new era in which the damage to forest ecosystems by tanbark peelers, “cut and run” loggers, and market hunters could no longer be reconciled with the “the greatest good of the greatest number in the long run” and a thriving tourism industry. The presentation will conclude with some thoughts on where we appear to be as a nation on the forest preservation—conservation—utilization spectrum in the 21st century.  Fee $5 Arboretum member, $10 nonmember.  Thomas Cole painting of Catskill Creek from Register online at  

Wednesday, October 15, 6:00 pm – Adapting Species to a Changing World: The Potential of Genome Editing

Innovative new technologies may enable scientists to manipulate ancient and modern DNA to safeguard ecosystems from invasive organisms, help species recover their genetic diversity, and address issues of climate change. However, as geneticist George Church, Robert Winthrop Professor of Genetics at Harvard Medical School, will discuss, while resurrecting mammoths could help maintain the Arctic permafrost, such developments require thoughtful consideration of complex system interactions and potential unintended consequences. This Harvard Museum of Natural History program will take place Wednesday, October 15, beginning at 6 pm in the Geological Lecture Hall at 24 Oxford Street in Cambridge. Free and open to the public. Free event parking available at the 52 Oxford Street Garage.

Friday, October 17, 9:30 am – Ikebana Demonstration with Yoka Hosono

Ikebana International Boston Chapter 17 and Sogetsu Massachusetts Chapter present Sogetsu Master Instructor Yoka Hosono from Sogetsu Headquarters, Tokyo, Japan, on Friday, October 17, 2014 at 9:30 AM. This Ikebana Demonstration (Creative Japanese Floral Design) will be held at NewBridge on the Charles, Great Meadow Road, Dedham, Massachusetts, near Exit 17 off Rte 95. Tickets $20 at the door for non-members. Featured Potters: David and Keiko Hergeshimer. For more information, contact: Minal Akkad 508.270.6759 or Tomoko Tanaka 781.237.5739. You may also email them at and

Tuesday, October 7, 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm – Ecologies in Flux: The Role of Exotic Plants in Urban and Suburban Landscapes

Most people live in environments that have been drastically altered by humans. While we are well aware of the built structures (houses, roads, stores) in our communities, we are less aware of the organisms that co-inhabit the surrounding landscapes.

In this dialogue, three prominent botanists will discuss the ecological impacts of exotic plants in both urban and suburban communities. The panelists will present different viewpoints on the various roles that plants play in these altered ecosystems and how human values and aesthetics influence biodiversity.

Panelists: Peter Del Tredici, PhD, Senior Research Scientist, Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University; John Silander, Director, Invasive Plant Atlas of New England; Bryan Connolly, PhD, Former State Botanist, Massachusetts Natural Heritage Endangered Species Program and now Assistant Professor, Biology Department, Framingham State University.

Moderator: William (Ned) Friedman, Director, Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University. $10 (free for Arboretum members). The talk will take place Tuesday, October 7 beginning at 7 pm at the Arnold Arboretum, 125 Arborway in Jamaica Plain. Call 617-384-5277, or email

Thursday, October 2, 6:00 pm – Saving Lemurs from Extinction

Primatologist and MacArthur Fellow Patricia Chapple Wright, Professor of Anthropology at Stony Brook University, and recipient of the 2014 Indianapolis Prize for her extraordinary contributions to conservation efforts, will discuss her work protecting the lemurs and ecosystems of Madagascar. Wright will share her experiences engaging the Malagasy government, community stakeholders, and scientists in a team effort to integrate conservation with development projects, including one collaboration that led to the establishment of Ranomafana National Park, a World Heritage Site in southern Madagascar. This Harvard Museum of Natural History event is free and open to the public.  The Thursday, October 2 lecture will begin at 6 pm in the Geological Lecture Hall, 24 Oxford St.  Presented in collaboration with the Indianapolis Prize. Free event parking available in the 52 Oxford Street Garage.

Friday, October 3, 6:45 pm – A Biogeographic Perspective on the Fern Genus Polystichum

The New England Botanical Club (NEBC), founded in 1895, is a non-profit organization that promotes the study of plants of North America, especially the flora of New England and adjacent areas. The Club publishes the journal Rhodora, holds monthly meetings during the academic year (usually at Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts), maintains an herbarium of more than 253,000 sheets, has a small library, and annually grants a graduate student research award and Fernald publication award.

The New England Botanical Club will hold its October meeting beginning at 6:45 on Friday, October 3 in the Haller Lecture Hall, Room 102, found inside the door to the Harvard Museum of Natural History entrance at 24 Oxford Street, Cambridge.  The speaker will be Dr. David S. Barrington, Professor of Plant Biology, Director of the Pringle Herbarium at University of Vermont, speaking on A Biogreographic Perspective on the Fern Genus Polystichum.  The meeting is open to the public.  For more information you may email


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