NCBG Timeline


2018's Wildflower of the Year is Maryland golden-aster, Chryopsis mariana. Carrie Porterfield of the Durham Orange Quilters Guild makes the quilt for this bloom to add to the collection displayed in Pegg Exhibit Hall.

New in the Garden Shop are Maryland golden-aster T-shirts, and two new tea towel designs: Spring Wildflowers of NC, and Songbirds of NC, all by NCBG's own Dot Wilbur-Brooks.

At the spring meeting, the Botanical Garden Foundation's name is changed to North Carolina Botanical Garden Foundation to eliminate confusion with similarly named entities that support other botanic gardens; ours was the first Botanical Garden Foundation in the USA.

NCBG is one of two gardens in the USA (and 11 worldwide) to receive Conservation Practitioner Accreditation from Botanic Gardens Conservation International, the world's largest plant conservation network (508 gardens in 92 countries). This status is given for adhering to internationally recognized conservation standards, with excellence in policy, practice, and education, and is available only to botanic gardens with plant conservation activities at the local, national, and global levels.

The Peacock Discovery Room is renovated into a hands-on indoor nature learning space for families with children.

A new Garden entry sign with landscaping is designed for the corner of Highway 15-501 bypass and Old Mason Farm Road.

NCBG screens the documentary film "Wasted! The Story of Food Waste," by Anthony Bourdain, followed by the opportunity to connect with local businesses and organizations working to reduce waste and increase sustainability in the Triangle.

Kathleen Donohue of Duke U. presents the Darwin Day Lecture, "Birds Do Arrive, and Seeds: Darwin's Fascination with Dispersal."

Horticultural Therapy intern Amy Brightwood expands on last year's HT program for Glenwood School students. With a Honeybee and Human Health grant from Burt's Bees Greater Good Foundation, the new Living Learning Landscape program helps local schools develop sustainable pollinator and vegetable gardens, coupled with training in therapeutic horticulture for teachers, occupational therapists and counselors from five schools in the Chapel Hill/Carrboro district. These faculty report improved behavior and school progress among their students who do not learn so well in traditional classrooms.

A new certificate program in Therapeutic Horticulture is offered, for teachers and health and mental health professionals.

Herbarium Curator Carol Ann McCormick writes that the Herbarium curates botanically themed vanity license plates and seeks donations of plates from people retiring theirs.

This year's NCBG Award goes to Appalachian State U. student Byron Burrell for research on habitat preference and herbivory effects at Tater Hill Preserve, to find out what animals were eating rare plants.

Wonder Connection wins the Program Excellence Award at American Public Gardens Association's annual conference. Program manager Katie Stoudemire showed "truly innovative spirit in development of an original program" with her inventions: Wondersphere, a sealed chamber with gloves allowing hospitalized children to interact with plants and soil without danger of infection, and Hippoie Creek, a portable bedside stream with water, rocks, and plastic inhabitants.

The annual Discovering Magic in the Garden Spring Family Festival is postponed from April to May due to rain.

Mike Dunn, Natural Science Educator, and Elisha Taylor, Youth and Family Education Manager, create a new Garden Guide Training Manual and teach the first class specifically for new Garden Guides since Dot Wilbur-Brooks's retirement. A dozen new Guides then join the ongoing 'veteran' Guides.

Dan Stern, Director of Horticulture, and Education Center Landscapes Curator Amanda Mixon, advise a committee of Town of Chapel Hill and Public Library staff on planting a pollinator garden next to the main library building.

John R. Harris gives the Evelyn McNeill Sims Lecture: "In the Footsteps of Spring: Retracing Naturalists Edwin Way Teale and John K. Terres."

NCBG sells more than 1,000 plants at the spring Native Plant Sale and Festival, held jointly with other area native-plant nurseries.

David Robert again hosts a fundraiser at his Dead Mule Club, to support summer internships at Coker Arboretum and Battle Park.

"From Seed to Sapling and Beyond" is a joint celebration, with Chapel Hill Historical Society, of the Garden's past, present, and future.

Horticultural Technician Sally Heiney leaves after 18 years caring for the Totten Center area and guarding against invasive plants, and Horticultural Technician Bob Peoples retires after 20 years maintaining equipment, doing carpentry projects, and spearheading composting and recycling. The Horticulture Department reorganizes, eliminating part-time positions and adding three new full-time ones" Horticultural Technician (Dan Blanchard), Nursery Assistant (Katherine. Meehan), and Seed Coordinator and Collections Manager (Heather Summer, formerly part-time Seed Coordinator, now tasked also with updating and digitizing plantings records for accessions, Garden locations, provenance, survivorship, etc).

Conservation Gardening is the theme of this fall's education programs.

The 30th Annual Sculpture in the Garden displays more than 50 works by NC artists. It includes pieces by a former exhibitor, the late Carolyn Owen, on loan from their owners as a memorial tribute. New this year is Community Day, with tours of the Garden and sculptures, and announcement of the People's Choice Award.

A potluck lunch celebrates the addition of several works to the permanent exhibit of art by Dot Wilbur-Brooks, hung between the Reeves Auditorium and the Bell Seminar Room.

Flooding from Hurricane Florence destroys the boardwalk at Mason Farm Biological Reserve.

Fall Plant Sale sets a new record for total plants sold and funds raised. NCBG screens the film "A Plastic Ocean" at the outdoor Forest Theatre.

Harvest Moon Celebration at the Forest Theatre is a joint effort by Edible Campus UNC, Center for Study of the American South, Carolina Performing Arts, and American Indian Center. It features multicultural stories, songs and the multicultural local food movement and social justice activists.

This spring and fall, the Piedmont Patch project seeks volunteers to help plant native plants on Episcopal Church of the Advocate's 15-acre property.

Once again, "Boo-tanical: Pumpkins in the Garden" proves popular.

Brie Arthur presents the Jenny Elder Fitch Lecture on the topic of incorporating edibles into traditional ornamental landscapes.

Plans are displayed for a new Plant Biodiversity Research Center to occupy space on and near the present Totten Center, which will be demolished to make room. The Center will house the Herbarium collections and research staff, as well as the Horticulture and Conservation Departments.

Volunteer Manager Elaine McManus asks donors for old holiday cards, from which she crafts 3-D ornaments for the Garden's holiday tree.

The Garden Shop sells calendars for 2019 featuring art by students of the Certificate in Botanical Art and Illustration Program.

Winter in the Garden Holiday Festival adds professional lighting to enhance the plantings for visitors who stroll through the Garden after dark.

Alan Weakley, C.T. Witsell, B. Baker, and D.B. Poindexter publish a 'first approximation' of "Guide to the Vascular Plants of Arkansas," first for the state. A summary is also prepared for plants of Shenandoah National Park, Virginia.

Charlotte Jones-Roe retires after 44 years at the garden, the last 25 as Director of Development. She started as a gardener, and moved on as Habitat Garden Curator and then Director of Conservation. Of the first group of NCBG employees, hired in 1974-5, she is the last to retire. At her retirement celebration, she is the sixth recipient of the Flora Caroliniana Award, honoring dedication to the Garden's conservation mission.

Nancy Easterling, Director of Education, retires after 34 years with the Garden, including stints as Horticultural Therapist and Herb Garden Curator. At her retirement celebration she receives the Order of the Long-leaf Pine, recognizing a record of extraordinary service to the state.

Also leaving the Garden in 2018 are Victoria Castor, after several years as Assistant to the Director and the BGF, and Exhibits Coordinator Cricket Taylor.

Joanna Massey Lelekacs is the new Director of Education. She holds Masters Degrees in environmental science and landscape architecture and previously volunteered in design and development of UNC's Carolina Campus Community Garden.

During Fiscal Year 2018, membership grows to 3663, up 7%; Large gifts received include $50,000 from Syngenta Crop Protection, for native plant conservation projects; $50,000 from the Oak Foundation for Wonder Connection at UNC Children's Hospital; $32,500 from proceeds collected by Chapel Hill Garden Club at its biennial Spring Garden Tour, and over $100,000 from Mary Coker Joslin Revocable Trust.

BGF purchases 13 acres adjacent to the Parker Preserve, adding to contiguous wild lands managed by NCBG.

Youth and Family Programs tally more than 2700 visits.

176 participants take courses in certificate programs in Native Plant Studies and in Botanical Art and Illustration.

13 students and interns are trained in Horticultural Therapy practices and HT provides 160 direct service sessions.

The Carolina Campus Community Garden donates 6,391 lbs of produce to low-wage campus staff.

The Conservation Department collects over 346.000 seeds of nectar and/or host plants for restoration projects, and over 50,000 seeds of Venus flytrap.

The Herbarium receives its 4th NSF grant, to fund digitizing records of its fern and fossil specimens.

ID: 87
Modified by: Camp
Last Update: 2020-06-26
Publish: 1

Go back