Making Brooklyn Bloom 2017

Special Events

Saturday, March 11, 2017 | 10 a.m.–4 p.m.

36th Annual Making Brooklyn Bloom

Connecting the Drops

Making Brooklyn Bloom

This year’s conference theme is inspired by BBG’s newly opened Shelby White and Leon Levy Water Garden. The Water Garden, which includes a pond, rock weir and forebay, brook, and riparian plantings, is a part of the ongoing, multifaceted Water Conservation Project. The first such project of its scale and complexity in North America, it promises to serve as a model for reducing dependence on freshwater and lessening combined sewer overflow. With a day of workshops, panel discussions, films, and more, “Connecting the Drops” will give special attention to water wisdom, interconnectedness, and citizen action.

Wilbur A. Levin Keynote Address

Grassroots: Regenerative Solutions for a Changing World

Courtney White, Author and Environmental Activist

Courtney White, Keynote speaker

“Big solutions to a wide variety of 21st-century challenges—including drought and food scarcity—can be accomplished for small costs. They are solutions that are regenerative over the long haul, meaning they replete rather than deplete people, animals, plants, soil, and other natural resources. A look at this amazing toolbox of regenerative, profitable, and scalable solutions shows that nature still knows best.”

Workshops

Learn more about the workshops offered.

Register the morning of the event to secure a spot in the workshop of your choosing. Arrive early to get your first choices. You may choose one morning and one afternoon workshop, space permitting.

Morning Workshop Descriptions

Bridge over Troubled Waters: Connecting with Our Local Waterways
Willis Elkins, Newtown Creek Alliance; Matt Malina, NYC H2O; Andrea Parker, Gowanus Canal Conservancy
For many of us it’s hard to remember that we live in what Walt Whitman called “the city of hurried and sparkling waters”—an archipelago, or chain of islands, located in one of the world’s largest natural harbors. Discover how these educators and environmentalists are turning urban stories of pollution into ones of regeneration and how you can join the folks making waves to protect our local water.

Examining the Plant-Water Connection
Emily Carter and Ashley Gagnay, BBG
Plants use water in complex ways. Take a closer look at this vital relationship and its connections to people. You’ll even make a small terrarium to take home!

Aquaponics 101
Yemi Amu, Oko Farms
Want a salad with that responsibly raised tilapia? Aquaponics is a revolutionary, sustainable system for farming fish while recycling fish waste into plant food. Learn the basics from an accomplished urban aquaculturist currently growing fish, vegetables, and herbs in Bushwick.

Celebrating Our Farming Traditions
Darryl Montgomery, Hancock Community Backyard Garden Park; Ijendu Obasi, GreenThumb
Whether planting a small bed or an urban farm, we bring history and vast experience to bear in every garden plot. By combining traditional knowledge with new online tools, let’s take the guesswork out of planning a bountiful vegetable garden this season.

Conserving Water with Compost
Claudia Navas and Cuyler Remick, NYC Compost Project Hosted by BBG
The virtues of using compost are endless, but some are better known than others. Find out how compost helps us conserve and steward soil and water—vital tasks for urban gardeners!

Facing Our Lead Legacy
Franziska Landes, Columbia University
Our inheritance of urban soil contamination can seem daunting, yet knowledge is power. Learn how researchers hope to engage gardeners as citizen scientists to test local soils and address this issue head-on.

Farm the Rain
Lenny Librizzi, GrowNYC
As much of the world struggles with drought, more New Yorkers are asking, Why do we let the rain slip through our fingers? Enjoy an introduction to rainwater harvesting and learn to make the most of this precious, free resource right where it falls.

Grow a Native Rainbow Garden
Bella Ciabattoni, 2016 BBG Intern
Native plants sometimes get an unfair rap as being unsuitable for ornamental gardens. This colorful, pollinator-friendly, season-by-season garden plan will show you how to break that stereotype in a border or container garden.

Hydroponics DIY
Fabiana Cellini, NYC DOE—Environmental Study Center
Hydroponics is the process of growing plants in nutrient-rich water instead of soil. This workshop demystifies the process of starting your own simple indoor garden and shares ideas for using hydroponics in the classroom.

Tour the New Water Garden
Katherine Patton, BBG Garden Guide BBG’s groundbreaking Water Garden and ongoing Water Conservation Project, the first of its kind in North America, are really making a splash. Learn how they promise to serve as a beautiful model for reducing dependence on freshwater and lessening combined sewer overflow. Weather permitting.

Afternoon Workshop Descriptions

NYC as Ecosystem
Uli Lorimer, BBG The splendors of the natural world exist at the edge of the city and even at our doorsteps. The curator of BBG’s historic Native Flora Garden illustrates ways urban gardeners can better appreciate and heal the natural ecological systems all around us.

Rookie Seed Starting on the Go
Kate Abrams and Lana Guardo, 2016 BBG Interns
This workshop will help you start your plants off right, introducing you to choosing seed and preparing growing mediums. Plus, get instructions for making a simple, mobile cart that’s perfect for taking your seed-starting show on the road.

Aquaponics 101
Yemi Amu, Oko Farms Want a salad with that responsibly raised tilapia? Aquaponics is a revolutionary, sustainable system for farming fish while recycling fish waste into plant food. Learn the basics from an accomplished urban aquaculturist currently growing fish, vegetables, and herbs in Bushwick.

Celebrating Our Farming Traditions
Darryl Montgomery, Hancock Community Backyard Garden Park; Ijendu Obasi, GreenThumb
Whether planting a small bed or an urban farm, we bring history and vast experience to bear in every garden plot. By combining traditional knowledge with new online tools, let’s take the guesswork out of planning a bountiful vegetable garden this season.

Conserving Water with Compost
Claudia Navas and Cuyler Remick, NYC Compost Project Hosted by BBG
The virtues of using compost are endless, but some are better known than others. Find out how compost helps us conserve and steward soil and water—vital tasks for urban gardeners!

Facing Our Lead Legacy
Franziska Landes, Columbia University
Our inheritance of urban soil contamination can seem daunting, yet knowledge is power. Learn how researchers hope to engage gardeners as citizen scientists to test local soils and address this issue head-on.

Farm the Rain
Lenny Librizzi, GrowNYC
As much of the world struggles with drought, more New Yorkers are asking, Why do we let the rain slip through our fingers? Enjoy an introduction to rainwater harvesting and learn to make the most of this precious, free resource right where it falls.

Grow a Native Rainbow Garden
Bella Ciabattoni, 2016 BBG Intern
Native plants sometimes get an unfair rap as being unsuitable for ornamental gardens. This colorful, pollinator-friendly, season-by-season garden plan will show you how to break that stereotype in a border or container garden.

Hydroponics DIY
Fabiana Cellini, NYC DOE—Environmental Study Center
Hydroponics is the process of growing plants in nutrient-rich water instead of soil. This workshop demystifies the process of starting your own simple indoor garden and shares ideas for using hydroponics in the classroom.

Tour the New Water Garden
Emily Sachar, BBG Garden Guide
BBG’s groundbreaking Water Garden and ongoing Water Conservation Project, the first of its kind in North America, are really making a splash. Learn how they promise to serve as a beautiful model for reducing dependence on freshwater and lessening combined sewer overflow. Weather permitting.

Schedule

10–11 a.m.

Registration and coffee in the Steinberg Visitor Center

Please note this year’s change of venue.
Register the day of the event to secure space for workshops and the keynote address.
11 a.m.–Noon

Morning Workshops

The final schedule will be listed at registration. You may choose one morning and one afternoon workshop, space permitting. Arrive early to get your first choices.

  • Bridge over Troubled Waters: Connecting to Our Local Waterways
  • Examining the Plant-Water Connection
  • Aquaponics 101
  • Celebrating Our Farming Traditions
  • Conserving Water with Compost
  • Facing Our Lead Legacy
  • Farm the Rain
  • Grow a Native Rainbow Garden
  • Hydroponics DIY
  • Tour the New Water Garden
Noon–1:30 p.m.

Lunch at the Yellow Magnolia Canteen (Steinberg Visitor Center)

Sandwiches, soups, and salads are available for purchase.

Bring Your Lunch Break-Out Sessions

Bring lunch to join the conversation and the action:
  • Community Composting
  • Horticultural Therapy
  • Street Tree Stewardship
  • School and Youth Gardening
  • Environmental Justice

Activities

  • Check out the Library (Rotunda).
  • See inspiring short films in the Auditorium.
  • Explore water-wise design at the Smart Garden exhibit (Steinhardt Conservatory).
  • Bring your questions to “Ask the Gardener” (Rotunda).
1:30–2:45 p.m.

Wilbur A. Levin Keynote Address
in the Auditorium

“Grassroots: Regenerative Solutions for a Changing World,” presented by Courtney White, Author and Environmental Activist

3–4 p.m.

Afternoon Workshops

The final schedule will be listed at registration. You may choose one morning and one afternoon workshop, space permitting. Arrive early to get your first choices.

  • NYC as Ecosystem
  • Rookie Seed Starting on the Go
  • Aquaponics 101
  • Celebrating Our Farming Traditions
  • Conserving Water with Compost
  • Facing Our Lead Legacy
  • Farm the Rain
  • Grow a Native Rainbow Garden
  • Hydroponics DIY
  • Tour the New Water Garden
4 p.m.

Pick up a spring gift bag as you leave!

Support

Leadership Support, Community Greening Programs
Logo: Brooklyn Community Foundation

Major Sponsor, Community Greening Programs
Logo: National Grid

Additional Support, Making Brooklyn Bloom
Logo: New York Presbyterian

Making Brooklyn Bloom is part of Brooklyn Botanic Garden's Green Garden, Green City initiative.

Major Sponsor, Green Garden, Green City
Logo: JP Morgan Chase


Upcoming Dates

Saturday, March 11, 2017
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