Since 1995, Open Days has been a rain-or-shine program and we continue to be amazed at the resilience and determination of the thousands of volunteers, gardeners, and visitors who still get out and get into gardens with us. Photo: Ellen Hayward.
Our 2016 season was one of extremes. Record high temperatures and drought throughout much of the country, were punctuated by snow and record rain fall in other areas.
All across the country, we opened a diverse range of private meadow gardens for you to explore, designed by talented amateurs as well as professionals including Twin Maples, the spectacular garden of native plant enthusiast Douglas Dockery Thomas in Salisbury, CT.
We continued to invite some of our Garden Hosts' favorites nurseries to set up shop at select Open Days, such as this partnership with Pondside Nursery of Hudson, NY at one of our Columbia County dates.
Our Digging Deeper and Experts in the Garden programs provided you with more than forty opportunities to interact with amateur and professional garden experts in all aspects of the garden world. We are thrilled to announce that these special educational opportunities often sold out around the country. They took place in various and wonderful locales—including the John P. Humes Japanese Stroll Garden in Mill Neck, NY with curator Stephen Morrell.
This year, we also explored ways to make Open Days a multi-generational experience—something that families can enjoy and learn from together. Our September 18 Open Day at Clock Barn Farm in Carlisle, MA, was filled with enticing and educational opportunities for gardeners of all ages.
Open Days is committed to showcasing regional horticultural and stylistic expressions in a national context—celebrating the rich diversity in American gardens. In 2017, we'll continue to explore gardens that express the current trends in gardening and garden design, such as use of edibles and organic practices.
This year we continued our work with many like-minded and enthusiastic non-profit organizations and public gardens around the country to bring Open Days to their communities, including new partners at the Boerner Botanical Gardens in WI, who organized an Open Day at Green Fire Woods, one of the gardens featured in the Garden Conservancy's anniversary book, "Outstanding American Gardens." Photo: Ellen Hayward.
Our 2016 Open Days season is now complete. Stay tuned here for information about our 2017 season, including great opportunities to visit amazing gardens, buy the best plants, and enjoy special programming through our Digging Deeper events, Experts in the Gardens, and to spark enthusiasm in gardeners of ALL ages, look for Family Time—programs multigenerational Open Days visitors can enjoy together.
Connect With Us
- Register here for special email updates and reminders about Open Days in your area. We will send you announcements about our 2017 season. You will also receive a Save the Date email three weeks before Open Days in your area and another one the week of the tour.
- For Frequently Asked Questions about Open Days, click here.
- Follow our popular Facebook page for beautiful photography, garden news, and last minute updates.
- Follow us on Instagram @thegardenconservancy and on Twitter @GCOpenDays and share your garden photos with hashtag #gcopendays
Open Days is 99% Volunteer Driven!
We have a small staff here in New York and we work hard to create the best garden-visiting program in America, but we can't do it alone. We have hundreds of volunteers around the country who make it possible. We hope you will consider joining them.
- Become a Regional Representative—Our “Reps” work directly with us to nominate and select gardens, schedule events, promote Open Days locally, and interact with gardeners and visitors in their area.
- Share Your Garden—Open Days gardens include everything from the inspirational work of weekend hobbyists and passionate beginners to professional designers. Enjoy the energy of interacting with fellow garden lovers who will be inspired by your garden.
- Greet Visitors—Share your knowledge of the local area and spend time meeting new garden lovers. Work individually or volunteer with a friend for an enjoyable day in the garden that requires no pre-planning or garden work.
To learn more about how you can get involved with the Open Days Program, click here.
Of course, you can always call or email us to talk about gardens in your area. Here is that information: toll-free information line 1.888.842.2442. At the moment we only answer this line Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., EST. We respond to emails after hours at: firstname.lastname@example.org.