NOTE: All member and nonmember tickets must be reserved in advance, and masks are now optional but recommended. Learn more about how you can join us!

Covering topics from photography and terrariums to bonsai and seed-starting, our Gardening and Botanical Classes schedule will excite and inspire you!

For more details about our programs, or to receive personalized class recommendations from our helpful staff, please feel free to contact us at edu@phipps.conservatory.org.

Confirmations will be emailed the day before each class, including a Zoom link. Please check your spam/junk mail folder, and if you have not received the link, email edu@phipps.conservatory.org.

Virtual classes are recorded and made available to all registered participants for one month after the program.

Cancellation policy:

Contact edu@phipps.conservatory.org or 412-441-4442 ext. 3925 to cancel a class registration.

  • Up to two weeks before the class (or the first class date, for a multi-session class), you may receive a full refund minus a non-refundable $10 adminstrative fee.
  • Up to 72 hours (3 days) before the class or the first class date, you may receive a 50% refund.
  • Less than 72 hours (3 days) before the class or the first class date, there are no refunds.
  • Special events like conferences will have a separate cancellation policy and refund deadline.

Mask and COVID-19 Policy:

Masks are optional and welcome in Phipps classes when the CDC’s COVID-19 Community Level in Allegheny County is in “Low” (green) or “Medium” (yellow). You can check Allegheny County’s current status here. Masks will be required when the level is “High” (Red). People with symptoms, a positive test or exposure to someone with COVID-19 should refrain from attending classes.

All times are Eastern Time Zone.

Want to sign up with a gift certificate?

Contact Phipps at edu@phipps.conservatory.org or 412-441-4442 ext. 3925 with your choice of class to sign up with a gift certificate. If there is a remaining balance for the class or a remaining balance on the gift certificate, we will discuss those details.

Current Classes

Click titles for full details

  • Make Your Own Terrarium | Monica Colantoni | Feb. 7 | 6:30 - 8:30 p.m. | This class has been canceled.

  • Pop-Up Flower Cardmaking | Shawn Sheehy | Saturdays: Feb. 11, March 11 or April 22 | 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. (with 30 minute break)

Detailed Listings

Pop-Up Flower Cardmaking (Full Series) | Shawn Sheehy

Saturdays: Feb. 11, March 11 and April 22 | 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. (with 30 minute break)

Full Series: $260 members | $290 nonmembers (includes material fee)
Presented as a live webinar through Zoom

Registration for the full series is now closed. Individual sessions are listed below.

*Relevant demos are recorded and made available to pre-registered students within 1 week of each class session.  Videos will be viewable for one month from receipt.

Supply List (PDF)

Why wait for spring to bring beautiful blooms into your home?  Join Shawn Sheehy in building four striking pop-up flower cards each class using just a few tools and a kit of pre-cut pieces.  You’ll leave the workshop with a set of completed cards- perfect for gift giving – and you’ll also gain insight into paper engineering and paper sculpture.  There are three individual wildflower workshops.  Take any or all three! All skills are welcome.

Session #1 (Eastern Flowers) Feb. 11 -  Common Blue Violet, Jewelweed, Pasture Rose, Butterflyweed

Session #2 (Southern Flowers) March 11 – Pitcher Plant, Spider Lily, Gaillardia, Trumpet Flower Vine

Session #3 (Western Flowers) April 22 – Miner’s Lettuce, California Buttercup, California Poppy, Sego Lily

Pop-Up Flower Cardmaking: Eastern Flowers | Shawn Sheehy

Saturday, Feb. 11 | 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. (with 30 minute break)

Single Session: $90 members | $100 nonmembers (includes material fee)
Presented as a live webinar through Zoom

Registration for this session is now closed.

*Relevant demos are recorded and made available to pre-registered students within 1 week of each class session.  Videos will be viewable for one month from receipt.

Supply List (PDF)

Why wait for spring to bring beautiful blooms into your home?  Join Shawn Sheehy in building four striking pop-up flower cards each class using just a few tools and a kit of pre-cut pieces.  You’ll leave the workshop with a set of completed cards- perfect for gift giving – and you’ll also gain insight into paper engineering and paper sculpture.  There are three individual wildflower workshops.  Take any or all three! All skills are welcome.

Session #1 (Eastern Flowers) Feb. 11 -  Common Blue Violet, Jewelweed, Pasture Rose, Butterflyweed

Create Your Own Kokedama | Marina Pawlesh

Tues., Feb. 28 (Snow Date: Thurs., Mar. 2) | 6:30 – 8 p.m. 

$25 members | $30 nonmembers | Material fee: $20
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park 

Level: All skills welcome

Kokedama is a Japanese form of garden art and is sometimes known as the “poor man’s bonsai.” Translated in English, Kokedama means “moss ball.” These pieces are created by enclosing a small plant in a ball of soil and wrapping it in moss. Learn what materials to use and how to care for and assemble your own Kokedama to bring a bit of fresh life into your home!

Orchids 101: Orchid Diversity and Care | Timothy Choltco

Tues., Mar 7 | 7 - 9 p.m. 

$20 members | $25 nonmembers 

Presented as a live webinar through Zoom

Explore the variety of orchid species and learn more about what makes an orchid unique in the plant kingdom. Plus, learn the essentials for growing orchids at home, including how to successfully repot an orchid.

Herbal Medicine Making | Michelle Soto

Thurs.: Mar. 9 and 23, Apr. 6 and 20, and May 4 | 6:30 - 8 p.m.

$225 members | $250 nonmembers | Material fee: $38

Presented as a live webinar through Zoom

Registration for this class closes on Feb. 20.

Medicine-making is an ancient art that we can master today. This class is hands-on from the comfort of your home. Learn how to work with various plants and make medicinal syrups, teas, and tinctures. Michelle Soto of Cutting Root Apothecary will share stories and information about each plant and how to use them medicinally. Students will have the opportunity to order a bundle with supplies needed for making medicines to be mailed directly to their homes. All the herbs provided are grown and processed at Cutting Root Farm & Apothecary in Butler, PA. Choose from the fall, winter, or spring session, or take them all, as new herbs will be explored each season.

Pop-Up Flower Cardmaking: Southern Flowers | Shawn Sheehy

Saturday, March 11 | 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. (with 30 minute break)

Single Session: $90 members | $100 nonmembers (includes material fee)

Presented as a live webinar through Zoom

Registration for this session closes on Feb. 28.

*Relevant demos are recorded and made available to pre-registered students within 1 week of each class session.  Videos will be viewable for one month from receipt.

Supply List (PDF)

Why wait for spring to bring beautiful blooms into your home?  Join Shawn Sheehy in building four striking pop-up flower cards each class using just a few tools and a kit of pre-cut pieces.  You’ll leave the workshop with a set of completed cards- perfect for gift giving – and you’ll also gain insight into paper engineering and paper sculpture.  There are three individual wildflower workshops.  Take any or all three! All skills are welcome.

Session #2 (Southern Flowers) March 11 – Pitcher Plant, Spider Lily, Gaillardia, Trumpet Flower Vine

Secret History of Plants (Phipps Walking Tour) | Boaz Frankel

Mon., Mar. 13 | 6:30 – 8 p.m.

$15 members | $25 non-members

Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, meet at the Welcome Center.

This interactive, after-hours tour of the Conservatory will encourage you to think about plants in an entirely new way. Plants aren’t just the building blocks of our gardens – they’re the source of our food, medicine, housing, clothing, culture, and so much more! We’ll stroll through Phipps’ collection and discover how plant and human interactions have shaped our world in surprising ways.

Herbal Dream Pillow | Andrea Jackson

Wed., Mar. 15 | 6:30 – 8 p.m.

$25 members | $30 nonmembers | Material fee: $5

Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Level: All skills welcome

Do you have trouble sleeping? Tossing and turning? Bothered by nightmares? Perhaps dream pillows are for you. Dream pillows are made from various herbs that are reputed to lull you to sleep and ensure pleasant dreams. This class will teach you about the benefits of these herbs, and each participant will take home their very own dream pillow.

Candles at the Conservatory | Kayla Heffernan of PGH Candle

Fri., Mar. 24 | 6 – 8:30 p.m. (7:30 - 10 p.m. also available)

$40 members | $50 non-members

Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, meet at the Welcome Center.

Join us for a night of candle-making at Phipps Conservatory. You will learn how to design and make your very own candle creation by picking scents inspired by the Wildflowers of PA. Learn how to reuse and repurpose your candle jar, and then while the candle is setting, you will enjoy a visit to the Conservatory. At the end of the night, you can take your candle home with a burn time of up to 60 hours. 

Candles at the Conservatory | Kayla Heffernan of PGH Candle

Fri., Mar. 24 |  7:30 – 10 p.m. (6 - 8:30 p.m. also available)

$40 members | $50 non-members

Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, meet at the Welcome Center.

Join us for a night of candle-making at Phipps Conservatory. You will learn how to design and make your very own candle creation by picking scents inspired by the Wildflowers of PA. Learn how to reuse and repurpose your candle jar, and then while the candle is setting, you will enjoy a visit to the Conservatory. At the end of the night, you can take your candle home with a burn time of up to 60 hours.

Shinrin Yoku: Guided Forest Therapy Walks | Martha O’Grady and Charlie Yuill

Sat., Mar. 25 | 12:30 – 3:30 p.m.

$30 members | $35 nonmembers 

Meet in front of Phipps Welcome Center, Walk in Schenley Park 

Come join Forest Awakenings for a relaxing nature retreat shaped by the Japanese practice of Shinrin Yoku. Over three mindful hours, we will slow down and connect with the More Than Human World in a deeper, more intimate way. Following a research-based process, we’ll get in touch with our bodies and our place in the living fabric of life. Our walk will conclude with a gratitude offering and open-hearted sharing over tea brewed from local plants. For more information, visit www.ForestAwakening.com 

Instructor Bios:

Martha O’Grady became certified by the Association of Nature and Forest Therapy as a forest therapy guide to share her deep connection to our living, breathing planet. By helping people fall in love with the more than human world, she strives to inspire conservation while easing stress and anxiety.  Martha's long-standing meditation practice has taken her to sacred sites worldwide.  When not out exploring, she works as a writer and producer.  

Charlie Yuill’s pathway to becoming a certified forest guide began in his youth as part of a family, often in the wilds on travels.  His educational background includes geology, landscape architecture, and environmental planning and design. As a faculty member of the Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Design at West Virginia University, Charlie’s work has focused on education and tending to aspects of the natural world.  His current professional activities focus primarily on the landscapes of the Appalachian Mountains. 

Secret History of Plants (Phipps Walking Tour) | Boaz Frankel

Mon., Mar. 27 | 6:30 – 8 p.m.

$15 members | $25 non-members

Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, meet at the Welcome Center.

This interactive, after-hours tour of the Conservatory will encourage you to think about plants in an entirely new way. Plants aren’t just the building blocks of our gardens – they’re the source of our food, medicine, housing, clothing, culture, and so much more! We’ll stroll through Phipps’ collection and discover how plant and human interactions have shaped our world in surprising ways.

Backyard Gardening Series (Full Series) | Phipps Conservatory Staff

Tues.: Mar. 28, Apr. 4, 11, 18, 25 | 7 - 8:30 p.m.

Full Series: $95 members | $110 non-members

Presented as Live Webinar through Zoom

In this virtual gardening series, learn all the basics for starting your backyard garden, from planting seeds to harvesting fruit and everything in between. Learn the steps necessary to start growing your food from home. Taught by our expert Phipps staff, this series will have you prepped and confident to get your hands in the soil come spring. 

Mar. 28: Indoor Seed Starting | Gabe Tilove 

Starting your transplants indoors gives you a head start when warm weather hits and allows you greater control over the variety and quality of your plants. Learn the steps and equipment to start and care for annual vegetable seedlings successfully. Plus, discuss heirloom and hybrid seed qualities and how to troubleshoot common seedling problems.

Apr. 4: Spring Vegetable Gardening | Allison Glick

Don’t wait until Mother’s Day to plant your garden – use the spring season and plant early, cold-weather crops that can give you an early start or extra harvest in your garden this season. Explore the best crops for earlier planting and discuss cold-weather crop protection strategies. 

Apr. 11: Build and Maintain a Raised Bed Garden | Gabe Tilove 

Raised beds offer several advantages over typical in-ground garden beds – improved drainage, greater control over soil and fertility, and easier weed and critter control. Explore the range of materials you can use to build raised beds and the best practices for filling and maintaining them. This presentation will also briefly cover trellising, season extension, and fencing options. 

Apr. 18: Organic Vegetable Garden Basics | Gabe Tilove and Allison Glick 

Learn the essentials of planning and caring for a vegetable garden using organic methods: how to arrange your crops within your space using the square foot gardening method, when and how to plant seeds and seedlings, how to water, how to minimize weeds, and how to manage pests and disease. A step-by-step worksheet for creating your plan will be included.

Apr. 25: Easy to Grow Backyard Fruit | Juliette Olshock

Fruits are one of the most satisfying crops you can grow at home! Learn the differences between types of strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries and how to purchase, plant, and maintain them. An overview of other less common fruits will also be included.

Backyard Gardening Series: Indoor Seed Starting | Phipps Conservatory Staff

Tues., Mar. 28 | 7 - 8:30 p.m.

Individual Class: $20 members | $25 non-members

Presented as Live Webinar through Zoom

In this virtual gardening series, learn all the basics for starting your backyard garden, from planting seeds to harvesting fruit and everything in between. Learn the steps necessary to start growing your food from home. Taught by our expert Phipps staff, this series will have you prepped and confident to get your hands in the soil come spring. 

Mar. 28: Indoor Seed Starting | Gabe Tilove 

Starting your transplants indoors gives you a head start when warm weather hits and allows you greater control over the variety and quality of your plants. Learn the steps and equipment to start and care for annual vegetable seedlings successfully. Plus, discuss heirloom and hybrid seed qualities and how to troubleshoot common seedling problems.

Backyard Gardening Series: Spring Vegetable Gardening | Phipps Conservatory Staff

Tues., Apr. 4 | 7 - 8:30 p.m.

Individual Class: $20 members | $25 non-members

Presented as Live Webinar through Zoom

In this virtual gardening series, learn all the basics for starting your backyard garden, from planting seeds to harvesting fruit and everything in between. Learn the steps necessary to start growing your food from home. Taught by our expert Phipps staff, this series will have you prepped and confident to get your hands in the soil come spring. 

Apr. 4: Spring Vegetable Gardening | Allison Glick

Don’t wait until Mother’s Day to plant your garden – use the spring season and plant early, cold-weather crops that can give you an early start or extra harvest in your garden this season. Explore the best crops for earlier planting and discuss cold-weather crop protection strategies. 

Backyard Gardening Series: Build and Maintain a Raised Bed Garden | Phipps Conservatory Staff

Tues., Apr. 11 | 7 - 8:30 p.m.

Individual Class: $20 members | $25 non-members

Presented as Live Webinar through Zoom

In this virtual gardening series, learn all the basics for starting your backyard garden, from planting seeds to harvesting fruit and everything in between. Learn the steps necessary to start growing your food from home. Taught by our expert Phipps staff, this series will have you prepped and confident to get your hands in the soil come spring. 

Apr. 11: Build and Maintain a Raised Bed Garden | Gabe Tilove 

Raised beds offer several advantages over typical in-ground garden beds – improved drainage, greater control over soil and fertility, and easier weed and critter control. Explore the range of materials you can use to build raised beds and the best practices for filling and maintaining them. This presentation will also briefly cover trellising, season extension, and fencing options. 

Backyard Gardening Series: Organic Vegetable Garden Basics | Phipps Conservatory Staff

Tues., Apr. 18 | 7 - 8:30 p.m.

Individual Class: $20 members | $25 non-members

Presented as Live Webinar through Zoom

In this virtual gardening series, learn all the basics for starting your backyard garden, from planting seeds to harvesting fruit and everything in between. Learn the steps necessary to start growing your food from home. Taught by our expert Phipps staff, this series will have you prepped and confident to get your hands in the soil come spring. 

Apr. 18: Organic Vegetable Garden Basics | Gabe Tilove and Allison Glick 

Learn the essentials of planning and caring for a vegetable garden using organic methods: how to arrange your crops within your space using the square foot gardening method, when and how to plant seeds and seedlings, how to water, how to minimize weeds, and how to manage pests and disease. A step-by-step worksheet for creating your plan will be included.

Pop-Up Flower Cardmaking: Western Flowers | Shawn Sheehy

Saturday, April 22 | 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. (with 30 minute break)

Single Session: $90 members | $100 nonmembers (includes material fee)
Presented as a live webinar through Zoom

Registration for this session closes on April 7.

*Relevant demos are recorded and made available to pre-registered students within 1 week of each class session.  Videos will be viewable for one month from receipt.

Supply List (PDF)

Why wait for spring to bring beautiful blooms into your home?  Join Shawn Sheehy in building four striking pop-up flower cards each class using just a few tools and a kit of pre-cut pieces.  You’ll leave the workshop with a set of completed cards- perfect for gift giving – and you’ll also gain insight into paper engineering and paper sculpture.  There are three individual wildflower workshops.  Take any or all three! All skills are welcome.

Session #3 (Western Flowers) April 22 – Miner’s Lettuce, California Buttercup, California Poppy, Sego Lily

Shinrin Yoku: Guided Forest Therapy Walks | Martha O’Grady and Charlie Yuill

Sat., Apr. 22 | 12:30 – 3:30 p.m.

$30 members | $35 nonmembers 

Meet in front of Phipps Welcome Center, Walk in Schenley Park 

Come join Forest Awakenings for a relaxing nature retreat shaped by the Japanese practice of Shinrin Yoku. Over three mindful hours, we will slow down and connect with the More Than Human World in a deeper, more intimate way. Following a research-based process, we’ll get in touch with our bodies and our place in the living fabric of life. Our walk will conclude with a gratitude offering and open-hearted sharing over tea brewed from local plants. For more information, visit www.ForestAwakening.com 

Instructor Bios:

Martha O’Grady became certified by the Association of Nature and Forest Therapy as a forest therapy guide to share her deep connection to our living, breathing planet. By helping people fall in love with the more than human world, she strives to inspire conservation while easing stress and anxiety.  Martha's long-standing meditation practice has taken her to sacred sites worldwide.  When not out exploring, she works as a writer and producer.  

Charlie Yuill’s pathway to becoming a certified forest guide began in his youth as part of a family, often in the wilds on travels.  His educational background includes geology, landscape architecture, and environmental planning and design. As a faculty member of the Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Design at West Virginia University, Charlie’s work has focused on education and tending to aspects of the natural world.  His current professional activities focus primarily on the landscapes of the Appalachian Mountains. 

Backyard Gardening Series | Phipps Conservatory Staff

Tues., Apr. 25 | 7 - 8:30 p.m.

Individual Class: $20 members | $25 non-members

Presented as Live Webinar through Zoom

In this virtual gardening series, learn all the basics for starting your backyard garden, from planting seeds to harvesting fruit and everything in between. Learn the steps necessary to start growing your food from home. Taught by our expert Phipps staff, this series will have you prepped and confident to get your hands in the soil come spring. 

Apr. 25: Easy to Grow Backyard Fruit | Juliette Olshock

Fruits are one of the most satisfying crops you can grow at home! Learn the differences between types of strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries and how to purchase, plant, and maintain them. An overview of other less common fruits will also be included.

Family Paper Making Class | Katy Dement

Sat., May 6 | 9:30 – 11 a.m.

$40 members (Child-parent pair) | $50 nonmembers (Child-parent pair) | Material fee: $5 per project

Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Level: All are welcome

Join us with your young one to make a handmade paper card for someone you love. This hands-on workshop using cotton and plant fibers is the perfect collaborative art piece to gift a family member or loved one this spring. With the option to incorporate dried flowers, leaves, ferns, and a picture brought from home, this will truly be a one-of-a-kind gift made from the heart.

Note: Each ticket includes class registration and materials for 1 adult and 1 child to work on a project together. If you would like to make an additional project, please add the "Additional Project" ticket to your order.