Archive for the ‘Education’ Category

Fall Yoga Series for families

Thursday, September 11th, 2014

Fall Yoga Series for families

On Wednesday, families were led by Annie Damsky of Villager Yoga in the Fall Yoga Series for families. The seesions take place each Wednesday at 3:30 until November 19. To learn more about rates and to reserve a spot online, visit www.bbgardens.org/classes.

Cocktails with Class: Rum Edition

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

Cocktails with Class: Rum Edition

On Monday, August 25, Junior Board of Birmingham Botanical Gardens gathered with LeNell and Demian Camacho Santa Ana in the Arrington Plant Adventure Zone to mix rum cocktail creations.

Lunch and Learn: Porous, Permeable and Pervious

Friday, August 15th, 2014

Lunch and Learn: Porous, Permeable and Pervious

On Wednesday, August 13, the final Lunch and Learn of 2014 was held in the Auditorium. Director of Horticulture James Horton led a talk called “Porous, Permeable and Pervious.” We’re already making plans for the 2015 series! Stay tuned for what’s to come!

Lunch and Learn: The Buzz on Pollinators

Thursday, August 7th, 2014

Lunch and Learn: The Buzz on Pollinators

On Wednesday, August 6, Sallie Lee of the Alabama Cooperative Extension System led an installment in the Lunch and Learn series. Lee shared how to welcome bee pollinators in colorful and exciting ways into home gardens.

The Lunch and Learn events are FREE. Our next event will be held on Wednesday, August 13 from 11:30 – 12:30 p.m. Titled “Porous, Permeable and Pervious,” the event will be led by Director of Horticulture James Horton. Bring your lunch and we’ll provide the drinks and desserts!

Hikes for Tykes

Monday, July 21st, 2014

Hike for Tykes

On Saturday, Jule 11, Hike for Tykes explored the Barber Alabama Woodlands. Kaul Wildflower Garden Curator John Manion guided our tykes through the Barber Alabama Woodlands where we talked about flower colors, how seeds work and the Alabama state tree Pinus palustris (aka the longleaf pine).  Here the little ones investigated the oak-hickory-pine forest, looked under rocks and hunted for bugs.

We then explored the Japanese Gardens with Director of Education, Henry Hughes where we studied turtles and brightly colored koi fish in Long Life Lake, discovered a hidden Buddha statue within a bamboo grove and took turns ringing the Friendship Bell of Celebration.

Sunset Yoga at The Gardens

Friday, July 18th, 2014

Sunset Yoga at The Gardens

Junior Board of Birmingham Botanical Gardens hosted Sunset Yoga at The Gardens on Wednesday, July 16. The weather was perfect and the crowd was, too, and The Gardens is hopeful that the event returns soon!

Birmingham Youth Serve assists The Gardens

Thursday, July 17th, 2014

Birmingham Youth Serve assists The Gardens

This week, Birmingham Youth Serve Urban Service Camp assisted The Gardens on two gardens projects. On Tuesday, approximately 15 young leaders from local high schools worked in the Jemison Lily Garden with City of Birmingham Horticulturist, Amanda Clarke. Wednesday, 11 more students worked with Friends of Birmingham Botanical Gardens’ staff in Barber Alabama Woodlands spreading mulch, as well as removing a good bit of unwanted plant material.
Thank you Birmingham Youth Serve for partnering with us once again. We’re eager to see you in October for our Fall Plant Sale!

Young Professionals from Birmingham Rotaract Club and Parker High School students join forces to assist The Gardens

Thursday, July 17th, 2014

Young Professionals from Birmingham Rotaract Club and Parker High School students join forces to assist The Gardens

On Saturday, The Gardens had the pleasure of having Birmingham Rotaract Club along with students from Parker High School work with on two needed service projects. Approximately 30 students and young professionals assisted in re-mulching the Barber Alabama Woodlands interpretive trails and laying Woven Groundcover Fabric  down in the Herb Army lathe house. Both groups volunteer their time and muscle for 3 hours to complete both needed projects.
 Thank you Birmingham Rotaract Club and Parker High School 
Thundering Herd!

Growing Through Yoga

Wednesday, July 16th, 2014

Growing Through Yoga

It was a great day for “Growing Through Yoga,” a Children’s Summer Camp, at The Gardens today! Campers have been on a yoga adventure as they grow like trees, flowers, butterflies and other garden creatures. They are learning to build strength and balance in yoga poses inspired by the landscape and architecture of The Gardens while calming and focusing their minds with nature walks and meditations. Yoga games and special crafts like bubble snakes, herbal sugar scrubs, garden dream catchers and more are making it even more fun leaving campers feeling joyful and refreshed! Stay tuned for more classes such as this coming up this year!   

“Growing Through Yoga” was led by Annie Damsky of Villager Yoga.

A Crash Course in Alabama Ecosystems

Monday, July 14th, 2014

A Crash Course in Alabama Ecosystems

[Guest blog post by Louise Agee Wrinkle Native Plant Intern Mitchell Vaughan]

Recently, I was part of a group who went on a field trip to the Bibb County Glades, located near Montevallo, Alabama. Described variously as “a botanical lost world” and “a botanical wonder,” as well as other similarly impressive titles, this site is not at all what comes to mind when I hear the word “glade.” I pictured something more like the Everglades, a big grassy wetland broken by the occasional tree hammock. The word glade, however, means an open area surrounded by trees. Much of the Bibb County Glades are comprised of rocky, arid, grass-and-wildflower-covered rocky outcrops. What makes these glades distinctly different is the type of rock of which they are composed, Ketona dolomite. 

Dolomite is a type of limestone and this particular type of it is unusually pure and contains large percentages of calcium and magnesium. Magnesium, in high concentrations, can be toxic to many species of plants; this is why the glades are populated by many unique species that have adapted to living in that particular type of limestone. They thrive here without competition from more typical species, which would normally populate the area. Growing on these glades are several rare species, including one third of all Alabama endemic plant species – and eight  species unknown to science before their discovery in the 1900s.

After trekking through some steep open terrain, we ventured into the adjacent woodlands where it was noticeably cooler. We hiked along a stretch of the Little Cahaba River and then deeper still into a forested area along a small stream. Here, it became more like walking through a temperate rainforest with lush green vegetation spreading prolifically in every direction. Following the stream, we eventually came to a spot with a particularly interesting botanical inhabitant, one that has yet to be named and described. Its temporary name is Trautvetteria sp. nov. (tassel-rue), and will be definitively named by whomever first describes it botanically. 

Finally, we packed up and drove to a nature preserve along the Cahaba River, where we hoped to see Hymenocallis coronaria  (Cahaba lily) flowering. And flowering they were! It’s a spectacular sight to see an expanse of showy white flowers bobbing daintily over the river waters in which it grows. Visiting these sites makes it clearly evident why they are described as some of Alabama’s natural wonders. 

From sunny glades to shaded woodlands, it was quite a day. Exploring several of Alabama’s ecosystems in rapid succession can offer a newfound appreciation for our state’s biodiversity and unique natural character.