2020 Workshops, Seminars, & Classes

ATTENTION: Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, all educational events at the Gardens have been either postponed or cancelled for the foreseeable future. Please check our social media for updates.

Lifelong learning is an important value here at the Knoxville Botanical Garden and Arboretum. We offer workshops, lectures and classes for people of all ages throughout the year. Our programs cover a broad variety of topics such as vegetable gardening, plant maintenance, landscape design, sustainability, health & wellness, and the arts.

Each program listing includes an online registration form. Pre-registration is required for all programs unless stated otherwise. The decision to hold a class or program is based on the number of registrants five business days prior to the program. If it is necessary to cancel a class due to insufficient registration, you will receive a full refund. Every attempt will be made to notify you regarding the status of your class.

Should you be unable to attend a class you have registered for, you may send an alternate person in your place. Please notify the Garden of this change at 865-862-8717 or info@knoxgarden.org. If you are unable to find a replacement, notify the Garden within five days of the class for a full refund. Cancellations in less than five days before the program will not receive a refund.

Participants should come dressed for the weather and activity. Most classes are held rain or shine. If we are unable to hold a class due to inclement weather, you will be notified.

Mysterious Mosses” with Dr.Jessica Budke

Back by popular demand!
Unless you look closely, you may never know all the wonders that lie hidden in the miniature world of mosses.  Join Dr. Budke to explore the diversity of mosses that live in our lawns, between the sidewalk cracks, and in our local forests. You will gain identification skills, learn how these tiny plants are important players in our native ecosystems, and go on a photographic adventure to explore mosses from around the world.
Presentation by Dr. Jessica Budke, Assistant Professor and Herbarium Director at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

February 4th, 2020
Cost: Free for Members, $5 Non-members
Click here to register!

Botanical Cocktails – Valentine’s Edition

Come experience the intoxicating arts of creating delicious cocktails, this time with a valentines twist! In partnership with PostModern Distillery, participants will watch demonstrations of cocktails being made, with special emphasis on incorporation of fresh herbs.

February 8, 2020
Cost: $35 Non-members, $30 KBGA Members, $25 Neighbors
Click here to register!

Lawn Mower Maintenance

Warmer weather is just around the corner. How confident are you that you can get that old mower started up again? Come learn the basics of lawn mower maintenance! Topics covered will be general maintenance, troubleshooting a mower that won’t start, and winterization. All skill levels welcome!

March 14, 2020
Cost: $15 Members, $20 Non-members, $5 Neighbors
Click here to register!

Spring Ephemerals Flower: Then What?

Daffodils, buttercups, trilliums: we love the flowers of our Spring ephemerals. But what happens after the flowers go away, when the flowers turn to seeds? The vast majority of our forest and woodland herbs produce seeds that are dispersed by ants. This seminar will showcase this critically important process and how it can be beneficial to the plants and ants that are involved.

April 23, 2020
Cost: Free for Members, $5 Non-members
Click here to register!

Naturscaping: An Eco-Conscious Approach to Landscaping

This unique workshop will explore the role of native plants and trees in the landscape through ecology, garden design, and philosophy, providing a fresh perspective on garden aesthetics in urban and suburban landscapes.

We will cover the the importance of pollinator and native plants in your garden, which plants are essential for specific wildlife, the importance of proper site preparation, and year-round landscaping strategies to anyone looking for some help selecting trees and plants that provide interest throughout all the seasons.

Native plants will be available on site for purchasing, and there will also be a few varieties of surprise plants as a gift for participating. Led by Joy Grissom, co-founder of Native Plant Rescue Squad.

April 25th, 2020
Cost: $30 non-members, $25 Members, $25 Neighbors
Click here to register!

Pollinators and the New Meadow

In the past year, the Knoxville Botanical Garden and Arboretum installed a new Pollinator Meadow. To help the community learn the importance, impact, and significance of this new feature, a representative of the National Resource Conservation Service will be giving a community talk on the importance of pollinator habitats.

May 2020
Registration coming soon! Sign up below to be alerted about upcoming workshops!


Hypertufa is an artificial stone made from a few simple ingredients, used to create planting containers and garden art. Jim Richards, our executive director, will show you how easy it is to make beautiful faux stone containers to liven up your garden. The class will cover materials, forms, colorants, and more. All materials will be included. Things can get messy so dress accordingly. 

May 16, 2020
Registration coming soon! Sign up below to be alerted about upcoming workshops!

All About Hostas

Come hear from Brian White of Brian White’s Nursery all about hostas. Included will be a short history of hostas, their range, information on growing them, and an opportunity to chat with a true hosta expert. If you’re not entirely sure what a hosta is or if you’re a long time hosta lover, this will have something for you. Brian will also be selling hostas after the talk!

May 21, 2020
Cost: Free for Members, $5 Non-members
Registration coming soon! Sign up below to be alerted about upcoming workshops!

Perfectly Pressed Plants

Back by popular demand!
Learn the long-standing practice of pressing plants for both artistic and scientific purposes and find out about the work being done by the University of Tennessee Herbarium. Participants will gain hands-on experience pressing plant specimens, learn how to mount pressed plants on paper for preservation, and go home with a mini specimen to display.

May 30, 2020
Cost: $15 Non-members, $10 KBGA Members, $10 Neighbors
Registration coming soon! Sign up below to be alerted about upcoming workshops!

Zen Gardens

Perfect for those who love succulents and have the desire to craft a meditative garden space. Zen gardens, also known as Japanese rock gardens or a dry landscape garden, use a combination of soil, sand, rocks, and succulents or bushes.

At present, we believe we will be able to host this workshop in person, but in the event that stricter social distancing guidelines are put back in place, the facilitator, Cotton + Moss, will be sending out at-home-kits for the garden and posting tutorial videos on Youtube.

In this workshop, we’ll be crafting a miniature zen garden that will be great to place in any area of your home. We’ll be focusing on succulents that have lower light requirements and be utilizing sand to evoke waves and calm. In a spin on the classic rock garden, we’ll be providing a variety of crystals like amethyst, kyanite, and others that symbolize purity and meditation to make your garden really speak to your needs. Come ready to design your peaceful landscape!

July 18, 2020
Cost: $55
Click here to register!

Summer Cooking Class

A cooking course designed and taught by master caterer, Rex Jones. More information to come!

July, 2020
Registration coming soon! Sign up below to be alerted about upcoming workshops!

Intro to Native Medicinal Herbs

Come listen, learn, and experience a collection of herbs native to the Southeast. Elderberry, passionflower, yarrow, and pleurisy root have all been used for centuries in herbal medicinal traditions. Detailing parts used, preparations, uses, possible safety concerns, as well as identification and basic plant care and harvesting sustainably. This will take place in KBGA’s newest garden feature, the Native Medicinal Garden.

August 1, 2020
Registration coming soon! Sign up below to be alerted about upcoming workshops!

Salsa Making and Canning

Come learn the art of canning and making salsa! Participants will be guided through the first steps of processing the tomatoes all the way through the sealing process of canning. Participants will leave with their own can of salsa. Led by Vivian Williams.

August 22, 2020
Registration coming soon! Sign up below to be alerted about upcoming workshops!

Ancient Flowers

A seminar given by Dr. Joseph Williams of UT’s Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology. He will be speaking on the evolutionary role and development of flowering structures in plants. More info to come!

September 10, 2020
Registration coming soon! Sign up below to be alerted about upcoming workshops!

Craft Beer Exploration in the Garden

Join us on the Green Drinks Garden patio, in the shadow of ripe hops and grape vines, for a fun and thirst-quenching evening, as we explore the modern craft beer world, hosted by the Brewing and Distilling Center’s Dr. Todd White and Elkmont Exchange Brewery’s Brew Master, Chris Meadows. We will sample the basic beer styles with a description and discussion of each and also enjoy some of the latest beer trends in American Craft Beer. Tasty appetizers will also be served to compliment our liquid treats as our local craft beer experts lead us through a delightful evening, exploring craft beer.

September 18, 2020
Cost: $30 Members, $35 Non-members, $30 Neighbors
Registration coming soon! Sign up below to be alerted about upcoming workshops!

Beeswax Candle Making

Get your fill of fall vibes with our beeswax candle making workshop. Come ready to partner up and select a favorite seasonal scent while sipping on hot cider.
We’ll be focusing on the art of making scented beeswax pillar candles by hand pouring each one. We’ll chat about best practices and tips like cleaning beeswax & choosing the best wicks. Creating pillar candles is no easy feat, but we’ll help walk you through how to perfect getting smooth edges & balancing scents. While the candles cool we’ll heat up some hot cider with fresh orange peel & spices for a festive happy hour.

October 17, 2020
Cost: $20 Members, $25 Non-members, $20 Neighbors
Registration coming soon! Sign up below to be alerted about upcoming workshops!

Fruit Tree Pruning

Pruning is an essential part of keeping trees happy, healthy, and productive. Come learn the art and science of pruning fruit trees, led by professional horticulturist and guest lecturer for the University of Tennessee Department of Plant Sciences, Amanda Spangler. The workshop will include hands on opportunities to prune.

December 2020
Cost: $10 Members, $15 Non-members, $5 Neighbors
Registration coming soon! Sign up below to be alerted about upcoming workshops!

Wreath Making

Learn and practice the holiday art of making wreaths, with the beautiful winter backdrop of the Garden. Participants will get to create and take home their own wreath.

December 2020
Registration coming soon! Sign up below to be alerted about upcoming workshops!

Want to be alerted about upcoming workshops and classes? Sign up here:


Want to share the excitement of KBGA classes with a friend? Give them a gift certificate! These make great gifts and are a wonderful way to introduce new people to the Garden. Call 865-862-8717 to purchase a gift certificate today.



2743 Wimpole Avenue | Knoxville, TN 37914 | p: 865.862.8717 | f: 865.862.8721
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