Come Learn with Smithsonian Gardens

Our mission at Smithsonian Gardens is to enrich the Smithsonian experience by extending the museum experience into an outdoor living classroom. We hope that the gardens tours and events in our gardens as well as our activity packages will help youth to exercise both their mind and body in the gardens around the Smithsonian and ultimately in their own community.

Community of Gardens

Community of Gardens

Community of Gardens is a digital, participatory archive hosted by Smithsonian Gardens and created by public input. By contributing images, videos, and stories to this website, your participation will help others to better understand the meaning and value of gardens to American life – today and in the future.

Explore Community of Gardens

Garden Fest

Garden Fest

This year’s Garden Fest program will celebrate National Public Gardens Day (May 8, 2015) with a collection of activities focused on the importance of pollinators to our food and ecosystems. Come explore the history of honey bees, learn what you can do to attract pollinators to your garden and participate in multiple hands on activities.

Learn more about Garden Fest

Let's Move

Let's Move! with Smithsonian Gardens

Smithsonian Gardens has created a program in conjunction with Let's Move!, First Lady Obama's initiative dedicated to fighting childhood obesity.

Butterfly

Watch, Listen, and Learn

Audio and visual material that highlights some of the magnificient gardens, plants, and collections of Smithsonian Gardens!

Programs for the Visitor: Garden Tours

Weekly garden tours are available from May through September (weather permitting).

Orchids of Latin America

Orchids of Latin America

Want to stroll through a tropical rainforest on a cold winter's day? Drink in a fragrant orchid? Explore the rich crossroads where orchid botany, horticulture, and Latin American cultures meet and take our Virtual Tour

Educational Materials and Activities

Garbage to Gardens

Garbage to Gardens

‘Garbage to Gardens’ is a set of lessons designed to introduce students to the concept of the “recycled garden.”

Flowers

Cultivating Habitat

The main focus of these lessons is for students to find connections between the natural world, biodiversity, and art.

History in Bloom

Visitors gain a wider appreciation of how gardens preserve the culture of Victorian America, as well as the Smithsonian’s long history of collecting plants and educating visitors about natural history.

Orchid

Orchids Around Us

Use the lessons in this package to learn about specific types of orchids, their appearance, habitats, uses, and cultural significance and history.

Archives Alive!: Learning from Landscapes Past, Cultivating Garden Memories for the Future

Uses the collection of historic and contemporary garden photographs from the Archives of American Gardens to explore the meaning of landscapes and gardens right outside their doorways.

Rose queen spider-flower

Trees of the Smithsonian

The Smithsonian Gardens’ tree collection is the base for activities that can be done in your neighborhood, community park, local public garden, or arboretum.