National Speaker

Fall 2023 Tour

Isabella Tree
The Book of Wilding—a Practical Guide to Rewilding Big and Small

Courtesy of Anthony Cullen

About the Lecture

The enormity of climate change and biodiversity loss can leave us feeling overwhelmed. How can an individual ever make a difference? Isabella Tree knows firsthand how spectacularly nature can bounce back if you give it the chance. And what comes is not just wildlife in super-abundance, but also solutions to the other environmental crises we face.

This is the subject of Isabella Tree’s lecture and newest publication, The Book of Wilding, a handbook that guides how we can all help restore nature. It is ambitious, visionary, and pragmatic. The book has grown out of Isabella’s mission to help rewild Britain, Europe, and the rest of the world by sharing knowledge from her pioneering project in Sussex.

Rewilding is a spectrum. Whether we have a garden, a pond, or a window box, there is no space too small. It is learning how to contribute to a living landscape, the life-support system that will save our planet from calamity and deliver us a prosperous and sustainable future. Deeply researched and beautifully illustrated, Isabella’s lecture explains how every one of us can play a part in rewilding our world. It is both a practical guide and a call to action. Above all, it is a manifesto of hope.

About the Speaker

Isabella Tree is an award-winning journalist and author of five books. Her first best-selling book, Wilding tells the story of the daring wildlife experiment she began in 2000: rewilding her and her husband Sir Charlie Burrell’s 3,500 acres of unprofitable farmland at Knepp Estate in West Sussex, UK. In less than twenty years their degraded land has become a functioning ecosystem again, wildlife has rocketed, and numerous endangered species have made Knepp their home. What has happened at Knepp challenges conventional ideas about nature, wildlife, and how we manage and envisage our land. It reveals the potential for the landscapes of the future. Isabella also writes for the Guardian, National Geographic Magazine, and Granta.

Tour Dates

$45 Members I $55 General

Friday, September 29
New York Botanical Garden
Bronx, NY

Keynote Lecture by Isabella Tree takes place from 5:00 p.m. to 5:40 p.m. (40-50 mins, with 10-20 mins of Q&A).

Isabella Tree is delivering the keynote lecture at the Garden Futures Summit
(Summit ticket must be purchased)

Monday, October 2
Middleburg Community Center
Middleburg, Virginia
5 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Wine and cheese reception and book signing takes place at 5:00 p.m. at the Middleburg Community Center, followed by a lecture at 6 p.m. (40-50 mins, with 10-20 mins of Q&A).

In partnership with the Piedmont Environmental Council

Wednesday, October 4
Missouri Botanical Garden
St. Louis, MO
2 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Lecture by Isabella Tree takes place at 2:15 p.m. at Bayer Events Center (40-50 mins, with 10-20 mins Q&A), followed by a wine reception and book signing from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Thursday, October 5

Chicago Field Museum
Chicago, IL
3:30 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Panel discussion takes place from 3:30 to 4:45 pm in the James Simpson Theatre, followed by an outdoor reception from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. in the Rice Native Gardens.

This is a free event with RSVP. Registration via the Field Museum website.

To register for an event, click on the highlighted locations above. Contact us with any questions at

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The Garden Conservancy educational programs are made possible in part by the Coleman and Susan Burke Distinguished Lecture Fund, Courtnay and Terrence Daniels, the Lenhardt Education Fund, and Susan and William McKinley.

Additional support is provided by The Celia Hegyi Matching Challenge Grant, Mrs. Ritchie Battle, the Antonia Breck Fund, Camille Butrus, Michelle and Perry Griffith, Rise S. Johnson, The Krehbiel Family Foundation, Sleepy Cat Farm Foundation, and John S. Troy, FASLA.

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The Fall 2023 National Speaking Tour is presented in partnership with the Piedmont Environmental Council, the Field Museum, and the Missouri Botanical Garden.