Early bird tickets are available through January 7, 2022.

WHEATON, Md.— Montgomery Parks and Brookside Gardens are hosting the annual Greenscapes Symposium online on Friday, February 18, 2022, from 9:15 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. EST.

Early bird tickets are now available online through January 7, 2022, for $45. The symposium brings together experts in the field of landscape sustainability and the environment to provide timely information and solutions to environmental challenges.

This year’s theme is “Advancing the Natural Landscape in a Modern World – Solutions for Sites and Situations.”

WHO: Montgomery Parks and Brookside Gardens is hosting its annual Greenscapes Symposium for people to learn about environmentally sustainable gardening and design practices.

WHAT: The 18th annual Greenscapes Symposium will feature live online lectures about gardening for wildlife, leveraging native plants for specific environments, and how to apply ecological principles for planting design.

WHEN:  Friday, February 18, 2022, 9:15 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

WHERE:  The symposium will be hosted online on zoom. Register here.(opens in a new tab)

This year’s presenters include Kelly Norris, author and plantsman, Janet Davis, owner of Hill House Farm & Nursery, Colston Burrell, lecturer, garden designer, and award-winning author and photographer, and Nigel Dunnett, plantsman, designer and professor of planting design and urban horticulture, department of landscape architecture, University of Sheffield.

Continuing education credits are being offered for symposium attendees from various organizations. Details are available on the symposium webpage.(opens in a new tab)


 Brookside Gardens’ Winter Light Exhibit, Garden of Lights, Opens This Friday

Montgomery Parks  announces Garden of Lights, the annual outdoor winter light exhibit at Brookside Gardens, will open on November 19, 2021.

For the 23rd season, Garden of Lights will transform Brookside Gardens into a magical winter wonderland, with twinkling lights and glimmering displays decorating paths and flowerbeds throughout the 50-acre site in Wheaton.
The one-half mile walk-through display consists of more than one million colorful LED lights, many handwoven into original works depicting animals, flowers, and other natural elements. The event also features computerized light displays matching lights with music and fog bubbles. Sweet and savory refreshments will be available for purchase, and the gift shop will be open. The conservatory and Garden Railway exhibit will remain closed this year.

“We’re excited to bring back the Garden of Lights in 2021 after having to cancel in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. There are new measures in place to ensure the health and safety of our guests, but they will still find our one-of-a-kind light displays and the magical experience of the Gardens at night,” said Stephanie Oberle, Director, Brookside Gardens.

New this year, all guests ages 3 and older will be required to pre-purchase timed-entry tickets. Tickets will be available to purchase beginning October 12, 2021, on the Eventbrite ticketing service. The Gardens, Visitor Center, and Conservatory will close daily at 4 p.m. and reopen at 5:30 p.m. for the exhibit.

Garden of Lights At-A-Glance:

Dates:  Open nightly November 19, 2021 – January 2, 2022 (Closed November 22-25 and December 24-25, 2021)

Hours: 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

Location: 1800 Glenallan Avenue, Wheaton, MD 20902

Tickets: $10 per person, ages 3 and older. Timed-entry tickets for a specific date and time are required and must be purchased in advance. Tickets go on sale October 12, 2021 and will be available to purchase on Eventbrite.

For more information visit the Garden of Lights Frequently-Asked-Questions(opens in a new tab)


Last Weekend to See “Middle Eastern American Artists in the Garden and Beyond” at Brookside Gardens

Brookside Gardens partnered with the Middle Eastern American (MEA) Advisory Group of the Office of Community Partnerships to co-sponsor the exhibition Middle Eastern American Artists in the Garden and Beyond.

Bridging MEA and other ethnic cultures in Montgomery County, the exhibit will feature natural scenes, earthen colors, explore Gardens as a source of inspiration and other related themes.  The exhibition will include diverse artistic styles from traditional still life,  illumination, calligraphy, and landscapes to neo-expressionism, abstract expressionism, figurative painting and surrealism.

The exhibit will be available from 10am-2pm today and tomorrow.


Wings of Fancy Live Butterfly & Caterpillar Exhibit at Brookside Gardens Cancelled This Year

Montgomery Parks is canceling this year’s Wings of Fancy Live Butterfly & Caterpillar Exhibit at Brookside Gardens, due to the health and safety concerns related to COVID-19. 


“We share in the community’s disappointment that Wings of Fancy has been canceled for the second year in a row, however, this decision was made after careful consideration for the health and well-being of our guests, volunteers, and staff,” said Stephanie Oberle, Director, Brookside Gardens. 


Visitors interested in learning more about local butterflies, and tips on starting a butterfly garden, can find photos and resources on the Brookside Gardens website


Brookside Gardens’ Conservatory will reopen to the public on Thursday, April 29. The conservatory features plants from around the world, including banana, palm, eucalyptus, red powderpuff and cacao trees. Also on display are fragrant plants such as snapdragons, rose scented geranium, myrtle, and tricolor sage.  Visitors can reserve free timed-entry tickets for one of two timeslots, 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. or 12 p.m. to 1 pm, Thursdays through Sundays. Masks are required. Walkups are not permitted.  


Brookside Gardens’ outdoor garden area is open daily from sunrise to sunset for exercise, meditation, and wellness.  The Visitor Center and Gift Shop are open daily from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Beginning May 1, 2021, the hours will extend to 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.   




Brookside Gardens Makes Yelp’s “Top 25 Gardens in North America” List

Yelp recently released an official blog post that included the “Top 25 Gardens in North America.” While most of us are familiar with Brookside Gardens, the 50-acre public display garden that is located within Wheaton Regional Park is now getting a lot more attention.

”Seems that our hidden gem isn’t so hidden” tweeted Councilmember Evan Glass, referencing the inclusion of Brookside Gardens in Yelp’s blog post.

Included in the gardens are several distinct areas: Aquatic Garden, Azalea Garden, Butterfly Garden, Children’s Garden, Rose Garden, Japanese Style Garden, Trial Garden, Rain Garden, and the Woodland Walk.

The Formal Gardens areas include a Perennial Garden, Yew Garden, the Maple Terrace, and Fragrance Garden. Brookside Gardens also feature two conservatories for year-round enjoyment.

Admission to the gardens is free and various temporary exhibits can be found throughout the year.

Featured photo courtesy of Montgomery Parks.


Brookside Gardens announces a new temporary art installation, “Facets of Hope”,  to honor the lives lost to COVID-19 in Montgomery County. It will run from March through September 2021.

Per Montgomery Parks:

Since March 6, 2020, when COVID-19 was first reported in Montgomery County, more than 1,400 county residents have died from the virus.  Facets of Hope” will honor those we have lost by suspending one strand of crystals, in memory of each life lost in Montgomery County.  The vintage crystals are clear, molded glass or cut crystal, and will be suspended from the arbor in the walkway. The exhibit will be installed on the wisteria arbor located in the Rose GardenNew strands will be added through the duration of the exhibit.  

 Everyone in Montgomery County has been deeply impacted by COVID-19. We have lost our parents, children, siblings, partners, friends, neighbors and co-workers to the virusThis temporary art installation is meant to be a place for memories, reflection and healing,” said Stephanie Oberle, Director, Brookside Gardens.   

The public can view the Facets of Hope outdoor exhibit from March through September.  The beauty of the exhibit will evolve through the seasons, as spring wisteria blossom, and then transforms in summer months as the roses bloom.

The grounds at Brookside Gardens are open daily from sunrise to sunset, and the Visitor Center is open from 10 am. to 2 p.m. 

Photos courtesy of Montgomery Parks and Jasmine Alley.


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