Ladew Topiary Gardens

Named One of the Top 5 Gardens
in North America

Special 45th Anniversary Lecture

For the Love of Bees with Dennis vanEngelsdorp, Ph.d.

Thursday June 2 | 5:00 - 6:45 pm dinner | 7 pm lecture 

Location: Ladew Gardens
3535 Jarrettsville Pike
Monkton, Maryland 21111
Tickets $45
Contact:  Rachel Hebert at 410.557.9570, ext 261 or

Honey bees, the largest group of managed pollinators in the world, have been in the news due to the high levels of loss to US beekeepers over the last 10 years.  This lecture will cover these unique and fascinating insects – from biology to communication, and what the public can do to promote and conserve them. vanEngelsdorp is an Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland’s Department of Entomology and an internationally known honey bee epidemiologist. He has served as the President of the Apiary Inspectors of America, is a founding member of the Colony Collapse Working Group, a member of the Honey Bee Health Coalition, and is the President of the Bee Informed Partnership, Inc.  He has written extensively and has been widely interviewed. He has given well over 300 talks on beekeeping including the French Parliament Agricultural Committee in Paris, the EU parliamentary commission on Colony Health, in Brussels. 

His TED talk on bee losses can be found at

Please call to reserve your spot. On-line registration is not available at this time. 

This lecture is sponsored by:


Spring Lecture Series!  

Ladew presents the Spring Lecture series, featuring distinguished speakers who will offer insights and inspiration to garden lovers and gardeners of all ages and abilities. The featured speakers will take you on a journey through their explorations of garden design concepts, plant selections, growing techniques, floral design, and natural history, while offering rare glimpses into some of the nation’s most beautiful private gardens.  

Ladew’s Lecture Series are offered every Spring and Fall.

Spring Lecture Series 2016

Join us as these inspiring speakers take you on a journey through their explorations of garden design concepts, plant selections, growing techniques, floral design, and natural history, while offering rare glimpses into some of the nation’s most beautiful private gardens. 

Held in Harvey Ladew’s Studio, lectures are $25 for members, and $30 for non-members. Lunch ($12) is optional and by reservation. Reservations should be made in advance and accompanied by payment.

Sign up for all five daytime lectures and receive one free!  Ladew Members $100, and $120 for non-members. Seating is limited for all lectures.

Coffee is served at 10 am. Lectures begin at 10:30 am promptly.

Registrants’ names are checked at the door on the day of the program (tickets are not mailed).


A Cultural Exploration of Chinese Gardens with Scott Rykiel
Wednesday, March 16 | 10:30 am

Scott Rykiel, FASLA, will speak about Mahan Rykiel’s recently completed conceptual designs for the Chinese Garden within the Sarah P. Duke Gardens on the campus of Duke University. Extensive research and vast overseas experience guided the design, which pulls from the cultural foundations of Chinese garden creation. Rykiel will discuss the more symbolic approach of defining the spirit and character of a space, and how that philosophy of design is a juxtaposition to that of the Japanese garden, which focuses more on the ceremony of space and the creation of a focal element within the space. He will show how the cultural differences create the foundation for garden design and ultimately embrace the nuances particular to the respective cultures. Rykiel has more than 31 years of experience as a landscape architect on a broad range of projects, both in the United States and internationally.

Fine Gardening Meets Fine Dining –
Delectable Plants for the Home Landscape with Pandora Young 
Wednesday, March 23  |  10:30 am 

This presentation will highlight underused perennial and woody plants of both superior beauty and flavor. Learn how to use interesting and edible plants in the landscape, as well as in the kitchen. The results are sure to delight both your eye and your palate. Pandora Young is a Senior Gardener at Longwood Gardens with over 10 years of experience as caretaker for Peirce’s Park and Peirce’s Woods — Longwood’s historic arboretum and native plant display garden. She is also an instructor for Longwood’s Continuing Education classes on edible and native plants. In addition to a deep love of horticulture, Young is passionate about world travel and experiencing new foods – two things which often go hand in hand.

The Right-Size Flower Garden with Kerry Ann Mendez 
Wednesday, March 30  |  10:30 am 

Change happens. Job demands, kids, hectic schedules, aging bodies and changing interests have led to gardens that are not in balance with our lifestyle. This presentation features exceptional plants, design solutions, and sustainable practices for time-pressed and aging gardeners. As an award-winning garden designer, author and lecturer, Kerry Ann Mendez focuses on time-saving gardening techniques, workhorse plants and sustainable practices. She has been on HGTV and in numerous magazines including Horticulture, Fine Gardening, Garden Gate and Better Homes & Gardens. Mendez was awarded the 2014 Gold Medal from the Massachusetts Horticultural Society for her horticultural accomplishments. In August 2015 she was elected a Regional Director for the Garden Writers Association of America. She has published three popular gardening books – her most recent, The Right-Size Flower Garden, is a top sellerA book sale/signing will take place.

  Sponsored by:
Rescuing Eden: Preserving Americas Historic Gardens with Caroline Seebohm
Wednesday, April 6  |  10:30 am
  Caroline Seebohms latest book describes how some of America's finest gardens were set for demolition, abandoned, forgotten, or turned into parking lots over the years, until dedicated groups of local garden lovers and institutions restored them to their former glory and opened them to the public. Seebohm was born in England and educated at Oxford University. She has written eleven illustrated books on architecture, gardens, art and design, including At Home with Books, At Home with Art, English Country, and Private Landscapes. She writes articles for House & Garden in the U.K., The New York Times, Town & Country, amongst others. She is the author of five biographies and two novels and an avid educator, teaching English to children both in the United States and other countries. A book sale/signing will take place.

  Sponsored by: 

"Seeds, Steeds, and Beautiful Weeds” - interpreting sculpture 
with Matthew Harris and Jann Rosen-Queralt

Wednesday, April 13 | 10:30 am
Join us for a lecture and tour of Ladew's 45th anniversary outdoor sculpture exhibit, "Seeds, Steeds, and Beautiful Weeds” with our artist-in-residence Matthew Harris, and MICA faculty member Jann Rosen-Queralt. We will explore the role of sculpture in the outdoors and join the artists for a walk through the exhibit in Ladew's wildflower meadow.  Harris, a blacksmith and sculptor, describes the subject matter for his sculpture as being inspired by nature and the rhythms and movements of life.  Rosen-Queralt’s approach to art integrates the diverse fabric of urban areas, revealing the character of each locale by maintaining environmental sensitivity and the poetry of voice.  (Please dress for the weather.)



We hope you enjoyed our past Lecture Series:

New and Underused Perennials to Expand Your Palette with Ruth Rogers Clausen    Sponsored by Pinehurst 

Thursday, October 1  |  10:30 am Studio

Are you tired of having your hard work gobbled up by herds of hungry deer? Have you given up on trying to create an aesthetically pleasing garden with interesting plant combinations because you think its no longer possible? Invigorate your gardening enthusiasm with tips from well-known garden writer, author and botanist Ruth Rogers Clausen through her years of experience with growing and knowing the “ins and outs” of perennial gardening right here in deer country! Clausen was trained in horticulture in the UK and has been in the industry for over 50 years.  She was Horticulture Editor for Country Living Gardener for more than 7 years.  Clausen has lectured widely and has written several successful gardening books including Perennials for American Gardens, Dreamscaping, 50 Beautiful Deer-Resistant Plants, and newly released for 2015, Essential Perennials: The Complete Reference to 2700 Perennials for the Home Garden.  A book sale and signing will take place. 



Sakonnet Garden - Coherent Design versus Obsessive Collecting with John Gwynne
Thursday, October 8 |  10:30 am Studio 

Join Sakonnet Garden co-founder John Gwynne as he shares the thirty plus year evolution of this secret Rhode Island garden embedded within a native coastal field landscape that originally began as a natural tangle of autumn olives and oriental bittersweet. At the diminutive scale of a cottage garden, its labyrinth of spaces are carved organically out of the original thicket. Each outdoor room reflects the owner’s ongoing experiments with lighting, space, color mixing, collecting and growing wonderful plants.  It is conceived as an intimate place to explore, with multiple paths leading one onward to unexpected experiences.  Gwynne, co-creator of Sakonnet with partner Mikel Folcarelli, is a trained artist and landscape architect.  He is the former vice president/creative director of design for the Wildlife Conservation Society, which operates the Bronx Zoo, where he designed signature, natural wildlife habitat exhibits.  He traveled to many nations helping the society’s efforts at landscape-scale conservation and is still involved with global conservation education and local meadow restoration.  For more information, visit


Windowsill Art with Nancy Ross Hugo

Thursday, October 15  |  10:30 am Studio


Through slides and on-site arrangements, Nancy Ross Hugo will share some of her own windowsill creations (which range from naturalistic to Asian-inspired and contemporary designs), using bottles, jars, and other small vases, to showcase leaves, seed pods, flowers, and twigs in ways to celebrate the seasons. According to Hugo, this simple, easy form of floral design requires very little plant material but results in lavish learning and a deepening appreciation of natural rhythms. Hugo lives, gardens, writes, and arranges flowers in central Virginia. As garden columnist for the Richmond Times-Dispatch, education manager for the Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, and writer for Horticulture, Fine Gardening, American Forests, and Virginia Wildlife, she learned early how to combine her love for the outdoors with her passion for writing and knack for explaining complex subjects in simple, straightforward language. Two of her most notable books include Seeing Trees: Discover the Extraordinary Secret Lives of Everyday Trees and Windowsill Art: Creating One-of-a-kind Arrangements that Celebrate the Seasons. A book sale and signing will take place.  For more information, visit

Stonecrop Gardens: A Hudson Highlands Gem with Caroline Burgess

Thursday, October 22  |  10:30 am Studio

Perched in a dramatic, wind-swept setting in the Hudson Highlands, just sixty miles north of New York City, Stonecrop Gardens was the home of Garden Conservancy founder Frank Cabot and his wife, Anne.  Today, Stonecrop is open to the public and inspires visitors to explore the infinite variety of the plant kingdom through its displays of raised alpine stone beds and a cliff rock garden, woodland and water gardens, an enclosed English-style flower garden, and a 2,000 square-foot conservatory housing tender specimens.  Fresh from the elite horticulture program at the Royal Botanic Garden at Kew and having worked many years for Rosemary Verey at Barnsley House, English horticulturist Caroline Burgess joined the Cabot’s in developing Stonecrop into a public garden in the mid-1980’s.  Under Burgess’ direction, Stonecrop’s gardens have expanded in scope and diversity, and now encompass twelve acres of varied garden spaces containing an encyclopedic collection of plants.  For more information, visit




Thomas Jefferson: Gardener with Peter Hatch

Thursday, October 29  |  10:30 am Studio  

Thomas Jefferson wrote, "…the greatest service which can be rendered any country is to add a useful plant to its culture.”  Peter Hatch's illustrated lecture will discuss the themes that defined Thomas Jefferson’s passion for natural history, landscape design, and horticulture. Hatch will also review the restoration of Monticello's gardens, focusing on Jefferson's revolutionary vegetable garden, and the Jeffersonian legacy in food, wine, and gardening.  As Director of Gardens and Grounds at Monticello since 1977, Peter J. Hatch has been responsible for the maintenance, interpretation, and conservation of its 2,400-acre landscape. He has written several books on Jefferson’s gardens, including A Rich Spot of Earth, and is an advisor for First Lady Michelle Obama’s White House kitchen garden. A book sale and signing will take place.  For more information, visit

Thanks to Our Sponsor:


Planting in a Post-Wild World: Designing Plant Communities to Evoke Nature with Thomas Rainer 

Wednesday, March 18  |  10:30 am

sponsored by Pinehurst Landscape Company

We live in a post-wild world, increasingly surrounded by more and more urbanization. How should our plantings respond to this context? Join writer and landscape architect Thomas Rainer to hear how naturally occurring plant communities hold the secrets for a new kind of planting — more layered, more lush, and more full of life than conventional planting. This talk will explore how plants fit together in the wild, showing gardeners how to use those strategies to create more resilient, diverse, and beautiful planting.  For more info, visit


Regenerative Organic Agriculture with Coach Mark Smallwood

Tuesday, March 24  |  10:30 am

With the explosion of support for USDA certified organic products, many understand the concept of organic to represent an absence of toxic chemicals. This is partially true, however, the organic approach is one where the farmer works with nature, not against it. Coach Smallwood explores Regenerative Organic Agriculture — a specific application of organic principles with the goal of building healthy soil over time, which provides a number of benefits including healthier food, healthier people and a healthier environment. For more info, visit

The Bartlett Book of Garden Elements with Rose Love Bartlett 
Wednesday, April 1
  |  10:30 am
sponsored by Pinehurst Landscape Company

Whether as grand as an allee, humble as a boot scrape, practical as a drain, whimsical as a birdhouse, essential as a staircase, or ornamental as a sculpture, garden elements can inspire. Join Rose  Love Bartlett as she takes you on a pictorial journey through highlights of the book, The Bartlett Book of Garden Elements, which covers 24 countries. She will discuss the origins and roots of garden design features while providing practical suggestions for the use and maintenance of these elements in the contemporary garden.  For more info, visit


More Than Just a Mere Brown Room: the Legacy of Baltimore’s Billy Baldwin with Jim Abbott 

Wednesday, April 8  |  10:30 am

In this illustrated lecture, Evergreen Museum & Library's James Abbott will celebrate the lasting contributions of Baltimore's own, internationally recognized tastemaker Billy Baldwin (1903-1983).  Mr. Abbott will identify surviving Baltimore interiors by Baldwin, while enhancing understanding of the 'Monument City's contributions to his iconic design vocabulary.



Plant Success with Ian Cooke
Wednesday, April 15   |  10:30 am

This fast paced presentation will open the door to new and exciting areas of ornamental horticulture.  Plants succeed and fail due to a number of conditions and circumstances. In this presentation we will not only identify these key criteria but understand how they work and how they interact with each other. For more info, visit

Special Evening Lecture, Dinner & Shopping!!!

Native Plants for Native Birds with Gregg Tepper

Thursday, June 4  |  7:00 pm  

Sponsored by The Mill 

Join horticulturist and native plant enthusiast Gregg Tepper for an entertaining and informative lecture on using native plants in your home landscape to attract and provide shelter for our native birds.  He will feature the best trees, shrubs and plants that will appeal to both you and our feathered friends.  Gregg has lectured on native plants extensively in the U.S.  and Great Britain. He is the Director of Horticulture of the newly-formed Delaware Botanic Gardens.