Lecture Series 2017-06-19T19:07:06+00:00

Lecture Series

All lectures start at 7:30 p.m.

Vollmer Center Auditorium
Cylburn Arboretum
4915 Greenspring Ave.
Baltimore, MD 21209
Click here for directions

For more information, call: 410-821-5561
or email programs@mdhorticulture.org

Come early to check out our plant raffle and stay for light refreshments after the lecture.

Members are required to show a current membership card for free admission to lectures. Guests of members also receive free admission. Admission for non-members is $10 at the door.

March 14, 2017
– Lecture cancelled due to impending snow storm. We will reschedule this lecture for a future date.

The Best of Flavor and Fragrance

Have you ever wondered which oregano has the best flavor or which lavender would be the best for a small hedge? It can be quite confusing since oregano refers to a flavor and not an actual plant, as well as the fact that many herbs hybridize and produce offspring with all kinds of variations. This talk will focus on the superior selections/varieties/cultivars of herbs and fragrant plants to grow for specific uses, whether for harvest or garden beauty.

Holly Shimizu is a nationally recognized horticulturist with a rich background in public gardens. After working in numerous gardens in England, Germany, Holland and Belgium, Holly was the first Curator of the National Herb Garden at the US National Arboretum in Washington, DC.  Most recently, Holly was the Executive Director of the US Botanic Garden, on the National Mall, where she was responsible for all aspects of running the Garden which experienced a renaissance during her leadership.

Currently, Holly is on the Advisory Council for Las Cruces Biological Station/Wilson Botanical Garden, part of the Organization for Tropical Studies in Costa Rica, is on the American Botanical Council Advisory Board as well as the Advisory Board of the Southern Delaware Botanical Garden, and is lecturing, writing, and leading horticultural trips internationally. Her husband Osamu is a Garden Designer that she met while working in Europe. They live in Glen Echo, Maryland with their naughty dog where they enjoy their sanctuary garden near the Potomac River.  In addition, they are creating a series of gardens around their 1730 house in Lewes, DE.


coming soon…

April 11, 2017

Out of Africa:  Gardening with South African Plants

Our gardens reflect the places we’ve been and the people we’ve met. We relate deeply to special places, people, and experiences in our lives. Then we carry those images, those experiences, and those feelings into our gardens. Gardens connect people and they tell our life stories. Marilyn will share her South African odyssey and show how South African plants can broaden our plant vocabulary that we use to create exciting and ever-changing stories in our gardens and in our containers.

Marilyn Daly recently retired after teaching for 36 years at York College of Pennsylvania. She also taught in the Longwood Gardens Ornamental Horticulture Program for 20 years. Over the years she conducted numerous annual plant trials with students on her farm in Dallastown, PA. Marilyn’s passion for plants and gardening and her plant trial research took her around the world.

Marilyn and her husband travel extensively, especially to South Africa, photographing and searching for new and exciting plants that can be grown here. They’ve visited South Africa almost every year since 1996 when she took her first of three sabbaticals at Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden in Cape Town, known for the famous “fynbos” plant biome. Ten years ago they bought a second home in Cape Town, where she designed and planted an indigenous fynbos garden. She was the first to plant a garden “outside the wall.” It quickly became the talk of the neighborhood. Now, ten years later, almost all neighbors have followed her example and have planted gardens street-side, outside their protecting garden walls. Gardens connect people.

Marilyn now teaches a York College class she developed for non-science majors called Plants and People, which includes hands-on study in the tropical rain forests of Costa Rica. She says, “This class gives me the opportunity to share my passion for plants, to motivate students to appreciate the beauty and intricacies of the natural world, to develop a global perspective, and to recognize the important role they as individuals may play in preserving the delicate balance of life on earth.”

Marilyn’s gardens, travels, and research have been featured in popular media and scientific publications. As Marilyn teaches, travels, researches, and opens her gardens to visitors, she shares her knowledge of plants and her passion for the science, the beauty, and the art of gardening.


May 9, 2017

Obsession and Exploitation:  A Cultural History of Trilliums

Connections between trilliums and humans have existed since indigenous peoples employed their medicinal powers. They are coveted for their beauty, celebrated in song and rhyme, featured on stamps, and their perfect symmetry has been abstracted into logos, symbols and art. Their name is exploited to sell products and housing developments. Join us for a romp through the culture and the cultural history of this captivating genus. The story of trilliums is one of obsession and exploitation.

C. Colston Burrell is an acclaimed lecturer, garden designer, award-winning author and photographer. A certified chlorophyll addict, Cole is an avid and lifelong plantsman, gardener and naturalist. He has twice won the American Horticulture Society Book Award, and in 2008 Cole received the Award of Distinction from the Association of Professional Landscape Designers for his work promoting sustainable gardening practices.

Cole is a popular lecturer internationally on topics of design, plants and ecology. He has shared his love of plants and regional landscapes with professional and amateur audiences for 40 years. He is principal of Native Landscape Design and Restoration, which specializes in blending nature and culture through artistic design.

Cole has teamed up with Carlson Wagonlit Travel and The Minnesota State Horticultural Society for Garden and Nature Tours with C. Colston Burrell to offer personalized leisure tours to exceptional gardens and natural areas around the globe. His one-of-a-kind tours explore the best private and public gardens and the most ecologically diverse natural areas to create once in a lifetime travel adventures.

He has an M.S. in Horticulture from University of Maryland and a Master of Landscape Architecture degree from the University of Minnesota. He is a lecturer in the College of Architecture and Landscape Architecture at the University of Virginia, where he teaches about plants and their ecological connections to natural systems and cultural landscapes.

After tending a city lot alive with birds and butterflies in Minneapolis, MN, he now gardens at Bird Hill, 10 wild acres in the Blue Ridge Mountains near Charlottesville, VA.