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LifestyleHome and Garden

What's going on at public gardens

Many public gardens have closed for the season, but there still are some events going on for the plant starved.

New York Botanical Garden

The Holiday Train Show will run through Sunday at the New York Botanical Garden (2694 Dr. Theodore Kazimiroff Blvd, Bronx). Gardeners will appreciate the 140 miniature replicas of NYC landmarks -- including Yankee Stadium and St. Patrick's Cathedral -- fashioned out of plants, while kids will get a kick out of the train sets that whiz by them. Buy timed tickets online at or call 718.817.8700 for more details. ($20 adults; $10 children; $18 seniors and students; free for children under 2).


Queens Botanical Garden

The financially burdened Queens Botanical Garden in Flushing is open again, after taking its second cost-cutting furlough in 12 months, this time closing for 2 weeks. Originally from Flushing, I spent many school field trips at the garden. Since I wasn't exactly born with a silver spade in my hand, I usually found them boring. My mother always gave me a couple of bucks and instructions to stop in the gift shop and bring her back a small potted begonia; that was always the highlight of my excursion. The garden wasn't much to look at back then, or maybe it's just that my 8-year-old sensibilities didn't appreciate it, but  it's been undergoing a major overhaul over the past few years that focuses on sustainability. A new visitors' center, rose garden, solar-powered lighting and a multi-lingual trail guide are among the improvements, and a "green" parking garden is still under construction, with expected completion in the spring.

According to published reports, the garden has cut its staff by 25% and students who work there part-time will be replaced by volunteers. This might be a good time to show them some support, no?

Winter hours at the garden are Tuesday through Sunday from 8 am to 4:30 pm. There's no on-site parking for now, but you should be able to find a spot on Main Street or nearby Dahlia Avenue or Crommelin Street. Admission is free.

Visit to see a schedule of programs and get a map. (134-20 Dahlia Avenue,Flushing)

Brooklyn Botanic Garden

Take a free guided tour of the Brooklyn Botanic Garden on Saturday or Sunday from 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm. Just show up in front of the Visitor Center or call 718-623-7220 for more information. (1000 Washington Avenue, Brooklyn)

Does your organization or garden club have any events coming up? Post them in the comments section, below.


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