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Farm on Ogden Featured in Chicago Tribune

The Chicago Botanic Garden, and its Windy City Harvest urban agriculture program, has partnered with the Lawndale Christian Health Center to open a new 20,000 square foot center called the Farm on Ogden, a multiuse facility that supports and sustains a healthy urban community by bring food, health and jobs together in one location. 

The Farm on Ogden will open on June 22, 2018.

Fred Spicer named Executive Vice President and Director of Chicago Botanic Garden

GLENCOE, IL (Jan. 26, 2017) - The Board of Directors of the Chicago Botanic Garden has named Fred Spicer its next executive vice president and director of the Garden.  He replaces Kris Jarantoski, who retires after 40 years. Spicer most recently served 15 years as the director and then CEO of the Birmingham (AL) Botanical Gardens.

Chicago Botanic Garden Sets New Attendance Record in 2016— Topping One Million Visitors for Fourth Consecutive Year

GLENCOE, IL (January 6, 2017) – The opening of the Regenstein Learning Campus in September, the premiere of Night of 1,000 Jack-o’-Lanterns in October and the growing need for people to engage with nature brought more visitors than ever to the Chicago Botanic Garden in 2016. Attendance reached 1,074,000, the highest in the Garden’s 44-year history and an increase of 2.5 percent over 2015. Attendance has increased by 41 percent since 2006, when the Garden closed the year at 760,000 visits.

Super Seed Weekend brings gardening enthusiasts to Chicago Botanic Garden

Every winter, home gardeners congregate at the Chicago Botanic Garden to plan their spring planting and share seeds at the Seed Swap. The annual Swap has become so popular that it has been expanded to a full weekend of events, Super Seed Weekend, including a featured speaker, gardening classes and, of course, the big swap. Events will be held on Saturday, January 21, and Sunday, January 22.

Bring the Kids: Family-focused events at the Chicago Botanic Garden all summer

Kite Festival

Family-focused events and exhibitions are going on all summer long at the Chicago Botanic Garden. Every week brings a new and fun event to experience. Boogie all night at Dancin’ Sprouts, featuring a different children’s performer every week. Watch high-flying kites during the Kite Festival or see boats race during Model Sailboat Sunday. Or stop in to the Model Railroad Garden and Butterflies & Blooms, two seasonal favorites that are open now.

Highlights include:

Model Railroad Garden: Landmarks of America – Open through Sunday, October 30

Chicago Area Citizen Scientists Monitor and Protect Rare, Local Plants

Plants of Concern photo


GLENCOE, IL (Sept. 30, 2015) – A focused group of citizen scientists with the 15-year-old Plants of Concern program are on a mission this fall to protect local plant species that grow only in northern Illinois. Through a series of programs including a monitoring foray and workday, these volunteers are learning new technologies, collecting vital data about existing plants and preparing habitat for the return of missing species. 

Chicago Botanic Garden Opens New Nursery on Kris Jarantoski Campus

Event Date: 
Wednesday, August 26, 2015
new greenhouses

GLENCOE, IL (Aug. 26, 2015) - The Chicago Botanic Garden opened a 151,825-square-foot nursery today, adding more than 38,000 square feet of nursery space. The Chicago Botanic Garden’s horticulture staff grows 250,000 plants annually for indoor and outdoor floriculture and seasonal displays that are featured in the Garden’s 26 distinct gardens and permanent collections.

Chicago Botanic Garden Celebrates its 125-Year-Old Roots with a Commemorative Book, Exhibition, Heirloom Gardens, Model Steam Engines and More

Event Date: 
Saturday, May 2, 2015

GLENCOE, IL (May 7, 2015) —The origins of the Chicago Botanic Garden date to 1890 and the founding of the Chicago Horticultural Society. The dedicated group of Chicago civic leaders formed around the ideal expressed in the city’s motto, “urbs in horto,” or city in a garden. In the next 125 years, the Society would promote horticulture in all its forms and foster a love of gardening among the region’s residents.

Chicago Botanic Garden Sets New Attendance Record in 2014— Topping One Million Visitors for Second Consecutive Year

GLENCOE, IL (January 5, 2015) – Expanded programs and amenities, and people’s growing need to engage with nature, attracted a record number of visitors to the Chicago Botanic Garden in 2014. Attendance reached 1,058,000, an increase of 6 percent over 2013, the first year the Garden surpassed the one-million-visit benchmark. Attendance has increased by 52 percent since 2005, when the Garden closed the year at 697,000 visits, with steady gains since 2008.

How Did Plants Move to Land? Chicago Botanic Garden Scientist Helps Lead Global Effort to Trace Pivotal Events in Evolution

GLENCOE, IL (October 28, 2014)– Norman Wickett, Ph.D., a conservation scientist at the Chicago Botanic Garden, is co-leading an international team of researchers in an unprecedented effort to reveal details about the origin and evolution of land plants. The team’s findings are scheduled for publication this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. More than 40 researchers on four continents are collaborating on the analysis, the largest applied to this problem to date.

North Branch Trail Addition Opens at the Chicago Botanic Garden September 13

Event Date: 
Saturday, September 13, 2014

GLENCOE, Ill. (August 22, 2014)The Chicago Botanic Garden will open the North Branch Trail addition, a wonderful multiuse path connecting the North Branch Trail with the Green Bay Trail at the Braeside Metra Station in Highland Park, on September 13.

The opening celebration will be from 2 to 4 p.m. The official “ribbon cutting” will take place at 2:30 p.m. at the end point of the trail at the Chicago Botanic Garden, across from the entrance to McDonald Woods. The dedication event is generously supported by NorthShore University HealthSystems.

Chicago Botanic Garden’s Beginning Farmers and Ranchers Development Program establishes four incubator farms in year two of three-year program

GLENCOE, Ill. (August 19, 2014) – The Chicago Botanic Garden received a $750,000 grant from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) in 2012 to begin a three-year project to support the expansion of urban agriculture activities in Chicago’s South Side and West Side food desert neighborhoods. In the second year of the grant, four incubator sites have been established.

Two Highland Park Residents Receive Awards at Chicago Botanic Garden Volunteer Recognition Reception

GLENCOE, IL (July 8, 2014) –Rhoda Muchmore, of Highland Park, was awarded the Five Star Customer Service Award at a recent reception at the Chicago Botanic Garden acknowledging the ongoing dedication and support of more than 2,000 volunteers. Muchmore is known for consistently going above and beyond to provide spectacular customer service to Garden visitors.

Hoffman Estates Resident Named Chicago Botanic Garden Volunteer of the Year

GLENCOE, IL (July 8, 2014) – Rodger McDowall, of Hoffman Estates, was named the 2013 Chicago Botanic Garden Volunteer of the Year at a recent awards reception acknowledging the ongoing dedication and support of more than 2,000 volunteers. The award, launched in 1984, recognizes the spirit of volunteering by focusing attention on the contributions given by all volunteers as well as honors one volunteer for his or her outstanding service.

Chicago Resident Recognized for her Volunteer Work at the Chicago Botanic Garden

GLENCOE, IL (July 8, 2014) – Rosemary Hart, of Chicago, received the Barbara Whitney Carr Excellence in Leadership Award at a recent reception acknowledging the ongoing dedication and support of more than 2,000 volunteers at the Chicago Botanic Garden. The award was launched in 2007 to pay tribute to the retiring CEO and highlights the innovation of one dedicated volunteer.

North Branch Trail Addition Provides Important Transportation Link, Improves Access to Chicago Botanic Garden

GLENCOE, IL (June 9, 2014)Pardon our appearance as we build a scenic and safe multiuse trail along Lake Cook Road to improve access for visitors who come to the Chicago Botanic Garden by train, bicycle, stroller, foot and wheelchair. The trail will link two popular north-south routes, the Green Bay and North Branch trails, and also provide a safe pathway for visitors arriving at the Braeside Metra station in Highland Park.

Newly Renovated Garden View Café Offers Best of Local, Fresh Seasonal Food Now Open at the Chicago Botanic Garden

GLENCOE, IL. (May 8, 2014) The newly renovated and named Garden View Café recently opened at the Chicago Botanic Garden. It offers an enhanced menu of the best of local, fresh seasonal foods, restaurant-style seating, a barista and pastry station and flatbreads cooked in a brick pizza oven.

Attendance Hits the One Million Mark

Event Date: 
Monday, December 30, 2013

GLENCOE, IL (December 30, 2013) – For the first time in its 41-year history, the Chicago Botanic Garden has attracted more than one million visitors in a calendar year. Today’s milestone represents a five percent increase over 2012, the second highest attendance year on record, and is the fourth annual attendance record in the past five years.

Chicago Botanic Garden Plants Largest Farm-to-Fork Rooftop Garden in Chicago and Midwest

McCormick Place rooftop garden produce

20,000 Square Feet at McCormick Place West Provides SAVOR Foodservice with Produce

GLENCOE, Ill. (Aug. 6, 2013) The Chicago Botanic Garden has planted the largest farm-to-fork rooftop garden in Chicago and the Midwest as part of its ongoing mission to promote local sustainable agriculture and train city residents for careers in urban agriculture. The site’s soil-based garden is located at McCormick Place West, part of the largest exhibition and meeting facility in North America.

Green Youth Farm Celebrates Ten-Year Anniversary

GLENCOE, IL (July 15, 2013) - The Chicago Botanic Garden’s Green Youth Farm (GYF) is celebrating its tenth anniversary. The program began in 2003 on a one-acre plot in the Lake County Greenbelt Forest Preserve and has added five sites. Two are in Chicago food desert communities: in Lawndale on the west side and in Washington Park on the south side, which is also home to a junior Green Youth Farm operating out of the Washington Park Field House. Another group of Green Youth Farm teens maintains the Thompson Center planters on Randolph Street in downtown Chicago.

“My Chicago Botanic Garden” Blog Tells Everyone’s Story

The Chicago Botanic Garden means many things to many people.

GLENCOE, Ill. (July 3, 2013) – Regular visitors to the Chicago Botanic Garden call it their home away from home, one that makes a beautiful setting for a daily walk. Scientists, graduate students and interns see the Garden as a living laboratory for vital conservation efforts. The Garden serves as a place of lifelong learning for the thousands of students attending field trips, adults enrolling in an array of continuing education classes and visitors participating in a wide range of events.

Garden Launches New “GardenGuide” Smartphone App

GardenGuide App

– First app in country that brings a botanic garden’s plant collections database to life

GLENCOE, Ill. (May 2, 2013) –The Chicago Botanic Garden announces a new smartphone app called “GardenGuide,” which is the first of its kind to be developed in the United States with the ability to tap in to a botanic garden’s plant collections database.   The GardenGuide app shares the Garden’s vast plant-collections database, containing records of the nearly 2.6 million plants in the living collection.  The app is free to users.

Peter Wirtz and Mikyoung Kim to Design Display Gardens

GLENCOE, IL (December 18, 2012) – After an international search, the Chicago Botanic Garden has selected landscape architects Peter Wirtz/Wirtz International and Mikyoung Kim/Mikyoung Kim Design to design two new display gardens at the 385-acre Glencoe campus. Wirtz will design the garden associated with the Greenhouse and Nursery Campus and Kim has been selected to design the Learning Campus garden.  This is the first public botanic garden commission for both and is the first United States non-residential assignment for Belgium-based Wirtz.

Chicago Botanic Garden Named a Top 10 Great Public Space for 2012 by American Planning Association

Glencoe, Ill. – The American Planning Association (APA) today announced the designation of the Chicago Botanic Garden as one of 10 Great Public Spaces for 2012 under the organization’s Great Places in America program. APA Great Places exemplify exceptional character and highlight the role planning and planners play in adding value to communities, including fostering economic growth and creating jobs.

Kleinman Family Cove Opening

Event Date: 
Tuesday, September 4, 2012

GLENCOE, Ill. (August 30, 2012) – On September 4, 2012, the Chicago Botanic Garden will open the Kleinman Family Cove, an aquatic classroom that will serve as an ideal location for children and adults to study the aquatic plants and animals that inhabit our wetland ecosystems and to learn about conserving freshwater systems, which are critical to our lives. Located on the Garden’s North Lake, the Cove is the third project of the Learning Campus development plan.

The Chicago Botanic Garden, Levy Restaurants and Midwest Foods Partner to Provide Fresh Produce for U.S. Cellular Field

Event Date: 
Friday, July 20, 2012 to Monday, August 20, 2012
Fresh produce

GLENCOE, Ill. (July 18, 2012) –  The Chicago Botanic Garden’s Windy City Harvest urban agriculture program has partnered with Levy Restaurants and Midwest Foods to provide fresh produce and tilapia for the Levy Restaurant’s Stadium Club at U.S. Cellular Field.

Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education Continues

Event Date: 
Saturday, May 19, 2012 to Sunday, October 21, 2012
Farmer's Market Demonstration

GLENCOE, Ill. (May 7, 2012) – The Chicago Botanic Garden has done groundbreaking work as a result of a two-year grant from the North Central Region Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education (SARE) program, funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture – National Institute of Food and Agriculture. The grant reaches both casual passersby and committed gardeners with ideas for how to integrate sustainable agriculture techniques into their own backyards.

Chicago Botanic Garden Receives Sakura Cherry Tree From Japan

Event Date: 
Sunday, March 25, 2012

GLENCOE, Ill. (March 13,2012) — To honor the 100th anniversary of Japan's gift of cherry trees to the United States, the Japanese government is gifting trees to public and private organizations throughout the United States. The Chicago Botanic Garden will receive 20 trees.

Chicago's Consul General of Japan, Mr. Yoshifumi Okamura and Sophia Shaw, president and CEO of the Chicago Botanic Garden, will plant the first cherry tree on Sunday, March 25, at 1:30 p.m. The tree planting will be a highlight of the Garden's annual Japanese Garden Spring Weekend event.

Chicago Botanic Garden Attendance Grows in 2011

GLENCOE, Ill. (January 26, 2012) — For the third consecutive year, the Chicago Botanic Garden set an all-time attendance record in 2011, generating 953,864 visits, representing a 5.4 percent increase or 49,000 more visitors than 2010. This number equates to a 29 percent increase since 2009. During 2011, the Garden experienced three record-setting months: August was the highest attendance month ever in the Garden's 40-year history with 134,049 visits; October had 97,289 visits, and December saw 70,509 visits.

Grunsfeld Children's Growing Garden Dedication

Event Date: 
Saturday, June 2, 2012

GLENCOE, Ill. (Jan. 9, 2012) — The Chicago Botanic Garden will open the Grunsfeld Children's Growing Garden with a dedication ceremony at 9 a.m. on Saturday, June 2, 2012. Attendees will be encouraged to also attend World Environment Day at the Garden from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The dedication will include remarks followed by a ribbon cutting, tours of the garden and two activity stations for children. Staff will demonstrate how the garden will be used for a variety of programs that connect children with nature. 

Chicago Botanic Garden and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Partner To Restore 1.25 Miles of Lake Shoreline

GLENCOE, Ill. (Nov. 22, 2011) – The Chicago Botanic Garden and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Ecosystem Restoration Program have begun a ten-month Section 206 Ecosystem Restoration Project to restore 6,400 feet of shoreline at the Chicago Botanic Garden’s North Lake. The project area includes the entire perimeter of the Regenstein Fruit & Vegetable Garden, as well as areas along the North Lake’s western and northern shoreline. 

As White House Focuses Nation’s Attention on Astronomy, STEM Funders Network Announces Goal for 100 City and Regional STEM Networks

(October 19, 2015 – Washington, DC) Building on more than a decade of research into successful STEM collaborations, the STEM Funders Network and 350 committed local funders and organizations are announcing a five-year effort to create 100 tight-knit local STEM networks—STEM ecosystems—that bring together broad-scale, cross-sector collaborations to nurture and scale effective science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) learning opportunities for all young people, especially girls and underserved populations.