What's Happening at Smithsonian Gardens

Exhibits and Events

Let’s Talk Gardens! logo

Let’s Talk Gardens!

Thursdays from 12:15 p.m. to 12:45 p.m., May 12 – September 29, 2016 in the East Walk of the Enid A. Haupt Garden

Turn your thumb green! Join Smithsonian Gardens’ horticulturists for a weekly series of free lunchtime talks and demonstrations on gardening basics. This year we’re covering everything from tree care and composting to growing hops and herbs at home. Check out the series schedule and get your questions ready.

See the 2016 Let’s Talk Gardens series schedule

Garden Fest logo

Garden Fest

Friday, May 6th, 2016 from, 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in the Enid A. Haupt Garden

Garden Fest highlights each of the Smithsonian’s gardens and connects people to plants through engaging hands-on activities and educational demonstrations. The event an annual a tradition for Smithsonian Gardens since 2006, is an all-day, family friendly event.

Click here to learn more about the upcoming event

Enid A. Haupt Garden

Garden Tours

Many visitors are surprised to learn that the Smithsonian Institution includes a number of outdoor museums. All have been designed to complement the museums they border and to enhance the overall museum experience of learning, appreciation, and enjoyment. From mid-April through September there are weekly garden tours available (weather permitting).

Explore our gardens

Example from Design for Small Spaces exhibit

Design for Small Spaces

Exceptional plants and unique elements add impact to small spaces. From fairy gardens to green walls, vignettes in this exhibit feature pieces from the Smithsonian Gardens’ Garden Furnishing Collection and plants grown at the Smithsonian Gardens Greenhouses. Tour our green scenes for ideas you can use to create your own little oasis.

Exhibit runs through August 31, 2016 in the Ripley Center Concourse

Farnham Garden

Patios, Pools, & the Invention of the American Backyard

In the 1950s, America was a nation emerging from the shadow of World War II, searching for ways to enjoy its newfound peace and prosperity. The baby boom, a growing middle class, the do-it-yourself movement, and a dramatic rise in home ownership remade much of the U.S. and, surprisingly, contributed to the development of the suburban backyard. This traveling exhibit traces the rise of outdoor living through vivid photographs, landscape architecture plans, and popular culture imagery from magazines, advertisements, and how-to books.

Patios, Pools, & the Invention of the American Backyard is a collaboration between Smithsonian Gardens’ Archives of American Gardens and the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service.

Learn more about the exhibition