Wednesday, February 28, 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm – Weaving Texture into the Garden Webinar

Join Dan Jaffe of the New England Wild Flower Society on Wednesday, February 28 at 6:30 pm, on line, to learn how to weave texture into the garden to enhance your existing blooms. Flowers are one of the beautiful plant features of our native flora, but what about the others? Discover how the emerging leaves of blue cohosh, the muscular bark of musclewood, or a swath of fiddleheads can add texture to your garden. $10 for NEWFS members, $13 for nonmembers. Image from Register at

Monday, March 5, 6:00 pm – Wild Diagnosis: Human Health and the Animal Kingdom

Barbara Natterson-Horowitz, Professor of Medicine, Division of Cardiology, and Co-Director, Evolutionary Medicine Program, UCLA; Visiting Professor, Department of Human and Evolutionary Biology, Harvard University, will speak on Monday, March 5 at 5 pm in the Geological Lecture Hall of the Harvard Museum of Natural History, 24 Oxford Street, on Wild Diagnosis: Human Health and the Animal Kingdom.

Sudden cardiac death in kangaroos. Breast cancer in jaguars. Compulsive disorder in polar bears. All animals, including humans, are subject to a wide range of physical and psychological illnesses. Using pathological specimens from Harvard’s Museum of Comparative Zoology, Barbara Natterson-Horowitz will discuss disorders in both living and extinct species. She will also examine the importance of comparative and evolutionary perspectives in deepening scientific understanding of disease and increasing our compassion toward affected patients—both human and non-human animals. Free and open to the public. Free event parking at 52 Oxford Street Garage.

This event will be livestreamed on the Harvard Museums of Science & Culture Facebook page. Check  the day of the program for a direct video link. A recording of this program will be available on our YouTube channel approximately three weeks after the lecture.

Friday, March 2, 6:45 pm – The Evolution of Conifer Cones Across Time and Space

Dr. Andrew Leslie, Assistant Professor, Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Brown University, will speak to the New England Botanical Club on Friday, March 2 at 6:45 in the Haller Lecture Hall, Room 102, Geological Museum, 24 Oxford Street in Cambridge. His topic is The Evolution of Conifer Cones Across Time and Space. At the broadest level, Dr. Leslie is interested in understanding the drivers of morphological diversification in organisms. He primarily approaches this topic using seed plants as a study group, focusing on relationships between form and function in reproductive structures and asking how these interactions generate evolutionary patterns over million-year time scales. Properly answering these questions requires an understanding of the broader ecological, geological, and climatic contexts in which these changes are occurring, and he therefore uses an integrative approach that incorporates techniques from paleontology, biogeography, and phylogenetics. His work particularly focuses on conifers because the group is diverse today but was also important in many ancient ecosystems, and the relationships between morphology and function can be directly tested in living as well as in extinct plants.

The lecture is free and open to the public. For more information visit

Saturday, February 24, 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm – Botany Blast: Woody Plant Basics

In this Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University introductory workshop on plant structure and function, we will focus on temperate forest tree and shrub species found around the Arboretum. We will cover topics such as basic plant function and the development of flowers to fruits to seeds. This interactive session will enhance your understanding of plants and amplify future hikes in the woods or wanderings throughout the Arboretum. The class will be taught on Saturday, February 24 from 1 – 3 by graduate students, led by Cat Chamberlain. Free for Arboretum members, $10 for nonmembers. Register by calling 617-384-5277, or email  Image from

Thursday, March 1, 11:00 am – 12:30 pm – The Old House Garden

Have you ever wondered what plants grew outside the door of your old house-and why? Spend the morning of March 1 (11 – 12:30) at Tower Hill Botanic Garden, 11 French Drive in Boylston, delving into plant and garden history, and learn the best resources to research and find those plants today. The free with admission program will be led by sleuths Betsy Williams and Tower Hill Librarian Kathy Bell. For more information visit

Wednesday, February 21, 3:00 pm – 4:30 pm – New England Plant Conservation in Practice Webinar

Join the New England Wild Flower Society’s conservation staff on line on Wednesday, February 21 at 3 pm to discuss methods for applied plant conservation in New England. Laney, Michael, and Bill will discuss current management practices, ex-situ conservation, citizen science, volunteer programs, and their work with the rare and endangered flora of New England. $10 for NEWFS members, $13 for nonmembers. Register at

Saturday, March 3, 8:30 am – 4:00 pm – Creating a Resilient Garden

The URI Master Gardener Program is pleased to bring you Creating a Resilient Garden, an engaging one-day gardening symposium designed for those who want to learn more about creating beautiful and environmentally-sound gardens. The sessions will help you DESIGN resilient gardens, DISCOVER herb gardening, and DECODE the truth about garden remedies. Educating and entertaining their audiences, these three keynote speakers are accomplished specialists in their fields and possess a wealth of knowledge and expertise.

Please join us on Saturday, March 3 at the Center for Biotechnology and Life Sciences on URI’s Kingston Campus. The facility is accessible to all, and the symposium is open to gardeners of all skill levels — novice to expert! Topics and Speakers include:

Beauty, Integrity, Resilience: Can a Garden Have Everything? by C. Colston Burrell (pictured below)

Do our gardening practices have a negative impact on the environment? Can we make a difference by changing the way we approach design, plant choice, planting techniques and maintenance regimes? How do we meet our aesthetic goals while providing the structure and resources necessary to maintain the insects and birds we love? Can we create healthy habitat with a mixture of native and exotic plants? We’ll explore these topics in relation to sustainability, aesthetics and ecosystem function.

Bloom Where You Are Planted: A Medley of Herbal Ideas by Linda A.Fleming

Learn everything you have ever wanted to know about growing and using herbs. Seed starting, seed saving, growing, propagation, and harvesting, as well as Linda’s favorite herb garden design, will be presented. Linda will share wonderful herbal ideas and recipes for entertaining. There will be a “hands on” lesson for herbal vinegars. Topics such as her love affair with scented geraniums as pass-along plants, herb topiary instructions and handmade seed packets will be included.

The Truth About Garden Remedies by Jeff Gillman

From beer used as fertilizer to baking soda for powdery mildew, there is no shortage of amazing cabinet cures for whatever ails your garden, but which of these cures actually work and which don’t? In this talk we will take a look at many of the most common cabinet cures from all over and discuss which ones work, which ones don’t and why.

Tickets are $75 and registration deadline is February 20. Register at

Thursday, March 1, 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm – A Common Treasury for All: Toward a Deeper History of Environmental Justice

In recent years, environmental justice scholarship has exploded. But virtually every relevant piece of work has understood the history of environmental justice as dating only to the late 20th century. The Harvard University Graduate School of Design Frederick Law Olmsted Lecture on Thursday, March 1 at 6:30 pm in the Gund Hall Piper Auditorium goes back to the 17th century, seeking to trace and analyze the evolution of a positive environmental rights discourse in European and American history. Having established our opposition to environmental injustice, we might want to ask: what exactly are we aiming for, in positive terms? What are the components of environmental justice? Is there any common ground left to stand on? And how might a deeper historical perspective help us answer these questions?

Speaker Aaron Sachs is Professor of History and American Studies at Cornell University, where he has taught since 2004. In 2006, he published The Humboldt Current: Nineteenth-Century Exploration and the Roots of American Environmentalism (Viking), which won Honorable Mention for the Frederick Jackson Turner Award, given to the best first book in the field of U.S. history by the Organization of American Historians (OAH). In 2013, he published Arcadian America: The Death and Life of an Environmental Tradition (Yale U. Press), which was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize in general nonfiction. Sachs has also published articles in such journals as Environmental History, Rethinking History, American Quarterly, and History and Theory. In his graduate teaching, he works with students not only in History but also in English, Science and Technology Studies, History of Architecture, City and Regional Planning, Anthropology, and Natural Resources. At Cornell, Sachs is the faculty sponsor of a radical underground organization called Historians Are Writers, which brings together graduate students who believe that academic writing can be moving on a deeply human level. He is also the founder and coordinator of the Cornell Roundtable on Environmental Studies Topics (CREST). Sachs is currently at work on book projects focusing on environmental modernity; environmental justice; and environmental humor. Free and open to the public.

Anyone requiring accessibility accommodations should contact the events office at (617) 496-2414 or

Wednesday, February 21, 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm – Our Dynamic Flora Webinar

This New England Wild Flower Society on line class will cover the criteria botanists use to determine whether plants are native to a region or introduced. Research botanist Arthur Haines will explain the shortcomings of each criterion to help explain the need for using suites of criteria. Given that the flora has always been changing (and likely always will), static benchmarks are problematic. The class will also include a brief discussion of global biodiversity and the problem of human-centric viewpoints. $10 for NEWFS members, $13 for nonmembers. Class takes place Wednesday, February 21 at 1 pm. Sign up at

Thursday, February 22, 6:00 pm – The Changing Landscape of Plate Tectonics

W. Jason Morgan, Professor Emeritus, Princeton University; Visiting Scholar, Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Harvard University, will speak on Thursday, February 22 at 6 pm at the Harvard Museum of Natural History, 24 Oxford Street, on The Changing Landscape of Plate Tectonics. Image below is of Professor Morgan receiving the National Medal of Science from then President George W. Bush.

Plate tectonic theory, a milestone in twentieth-century science, has been instrumental in advancing our understanding of Earth’s geological history, the formation of its surface features, and its earthquake movement. Geophysicist W. Jason Morgan—who introduced plate tectonics at a 1967 meeting of the American Geophysical Union—will discuss how the theory came about, highlighting both the role of ocean exploration in the 1950s and 1960s and early observations of seafloor spreading and ocean magnetic anomalies. He will also touch on the advances made in understanding Earth’s movements since the development of space geodesy instruments and technologies.

Free and open to the public. Free event parking at 52 Oxford Street Garage. Presented by Harvard Museum of Natural History in collaboration with the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Harvard University. This event will be livestreamed on the Harvard Museums of Science & Culture Facebook page. Check the day of the program for a direct video link. A recording of this program will be available on our YouTube channel approximately three weeks after the lecture.