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Cornelian Cherry Dogwood

Gardening & Botanical Crafts

Learn to bring the beauty of one-of-a-kind flowers, floral arrangements and seasonal plants into your home. Phipps offers an ever-changing selection of Gardening & Botanical Crafts classes for beginners and seasoned pros, from indoor bulbs to out of this world holiday wreathes and centerpieces.

Papermaking with Plants

Dates: Tuesday, Oct. 21 and 28; Nov. 4, 11, 18 and 25 | Register by Oct. 6
Time: 7 - 9 p.m.
Instructor: N/ A
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites:
Fee: $ 120 members; $130 non-members; $30 material fee
Location: Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Students in this six-week course will learn about both traditional and modern papermaking techniques, color, texture, surface design and composition as they create their own recycled paper out of plant fibers, such as Japanese knotweed, that they will collect themselves. Participants will also explore the process of producing pulp from both dry and green fibers; learn how to use pressed and dried leaves and flowers as embellishments; discover how to make seeded papers; and experiment with various methods like dyeing, printing and pulp painting using fiber reactive dyes and natural pigments to enhance surface designs. Dry sheets will be hand-bound into sample/recipe books.

Digital Photography

Dates: Saturday, Nov. 1, 8, 15 and 22
Time: 9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Instructor: Robert Egan
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites:
Fee: $ 120 members; $160 non-members
Location: Botany Hall at Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens

Students in this class will explore different aspects of photography through the use of a digital camera. Topics to be covered include digital workflow, camera settings, composition, image transfer and viewing preparation. Subjects like white balance, jpeg versus raw formats, and histograms will also be de-mystified so that they can be used as reliable tools. Instructor feedback will be given on weekly photographic assignments as students practice, and people with all levels of experience are welcome.

Birdwatching in Mellon Park

Dates: Saturday, Nov. 15
Time: 10 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Instructor: Gabi Hughes, Audubon Society
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites:
Fee: $ 25 members; $35 non-members; $3 material fee
Location: Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Birdwatching is a great way to connect with the natural world while developing skills important to the scientific process: observing, collecting data and asking questions. Students engaged in this program will learn how to use their eyes and ears to determine a bird’s identity, navigate a field guide, properly use binoculars, and record their observations. Participants will also receive information about getting involved in an avian Citizen Science project, such as eBird or Project Feederwatch. Participants should dress to be outside for part of the class and may either borrow binoculars or bring their own.

Sign up online or call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 to register. Call or e-mail with questions.

Nature Printing: Turn Another Leaf

Dates: Saturday, Nov. 15
Time: 9 a.m. - noon
Instructor: Gudrun Garkisch and Sue Neff, Nature Printing Society
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites:
Fee: $ 30 members; $40 non-members; $8 material fee
Location: Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Traditional nature printing involves rolling printer’s ink onto a natural object (i.e., a fresh leaf, fern or feather), placing it on a surface, and creating a finely detailed imprint of it. In this class, students will develop skills for creating both scientific and artistic illustrations for garden diaries and other projects. Each participant will be given special papers and note cards to print on but should plan to bring their own work aprons or smocks and some old rags for clean-up involving vegetable oil, soap and water.

This class is now filled. Please call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 or e-mail with questions, or to be placed on the waiting list.

Bonsai Re-Pot and Refresher

Dates: Saturday, Nov. 22
Time: 10 a.m. - noon
Instructor: Dr. Norbert Pietrzak
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites:
Fee: $ 25 members; $35 non-members
Location: Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Enthusiasts looking to re-pot, retrain or prune a tree in their collection will receive specialized attention from bonsai expert Dr. Norbert Pietrzak. Participants should bring a bonsai and a pair of hand pruners. Students may bring their own pots or purchase them at class.

Registration for this class is now closed. Please call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 or e-mail with questions.

Christmas Centerpiece

Dates: Thursday, Dec. 11
Time: 7 - 9 p.m.
Instructor: Sarah Needham
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites:
Fee: $ 22 members; $32 non-members; $50 material fee
Location: Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Students in this course will create a modern composite holiday centerpiece that incorporates votive candles, flowers, greens and various ornaments.

Sign up online or call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 to register. Call or e-mail with questions.

Fragrant Plants

Dates: Wednesday, Jan. 21 (Snow date: Jan. 28)
Time: 7 - 9 p.m.
Instructor: Leslie Kaplan
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites: None
Fee: $ 20 members; $30 non-members
Location: Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Fragrant plants, including aromatic shrubs, trees, perennials and annuals, can add a wonderful dimension to any garden. Students in this class will explore the possible sources of natural fragrance — from bark and leaves to flowers.

Sign up online or call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 to register. Call or e-mail with questions.

Taking Meaningful Photos

Dates: Saturday, Feb. 7, 14, 21 and 28 (Snow date: March 7) |
Time: 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Instructor: Robert Egan
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites: Prior digital photography class with Bob Egan
Fee: $ 120 members; $144 non-members
Location: Botany Hall at Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens

Making impactful photographs often requires more than basic point-and-shoot photographic skills. Thoughtfully answering the question “why am I taking this photo” allows a photographer to determine how to take a picture, emphasize what initially caught his/her eye, and draw the viewer’s attention to what is important in the image. Ideal for those who have a basic knowledge of their cameras and already take well-composed photos, this class will help participants take their art to the next level.

Sign up online or call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 to register. Call or e-mail with questions.

Introduction to Garden Planning and Design

Dates: Monday, March 2, 9 and 16 (Snow date: March 23)
Time: 7 - 9 p.m.
Instructor: Marilyn Apostolou
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites: None
Fee: $ 60 members; $72 non-members
Location: Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

In this course, students will learn about plant selection, garden trends, maintenance plans, architectural cohesion, implementation and more. Each participant will utilize a personal garden design workbook to track his or her garden design progress, and a panel of experts will join the class to discuss real-world garden design and maintenance challenges. Students will also receive a pre-class survey to ensure that their interests are covered in the course.

Sign up online or call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 to register. Call or e-mail with questions.

Seed Starting

Dates: Thursday, March 12 and 26
Time: 7 - 9 p.m.
Instructor: Linda Kramer
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites: None
Fee: $ 40 members; $48 non-members
Location: Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

The life of any garden begins and ends with a seed — whether it is a vegetable, annual flower, perennial, tree or shrub. In this class, steps for successful seed starting will be covered, along with techniques for transplanting. Heirloom and hybrid qualities will also be discussed and a hands-on segment will allow each student to gain the confidence needed to successfully start seeds at home for spring.

Sign up online or call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 to register. Call or e-mail with questions.

Introduction to Garden Care

Dates: Tuesday, March 24 and 31; April 7
Time: 7 - 9 p.m.
Instructor: Linda Roos
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites: None
Fee: $ 60 members; $72 non-members
Location: Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

This course is designed to help the novice gardener feel confident creating and maintaining a beautiful home landscape. With an emphasis on sustainable practices, this class will cover soil preparation, plant selection, proper planting techniques, maintenance, and insect and disease control for both vegetable and ornamental gardens. Students will also get a thorough overview of perennials, trees and shrubs that are hardy to this region and help create a visually pleasing and environmentally friendly garden.

Sign up online or call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 to register. Call or e-mail with questions.

Beginning Bonsai Workshop

Dates: Saturday, April 11
Time: 10 a.m. - noon
Instructor: Kevin Haughey
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites: None
Fee: $ 25 members; $35 non-members; $40 material fee
Location: Botany Hall at Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens

In this hands-on workshop, students will have the opportunity to study the timeless and ancient art of bonsai as they learn the horticultural techniques of styling, wiring, potting and root pruning. All materials will be provided, and each participant will take home a completed dwarf garden juniper bonsai. Participants should bring a pair of hand pruners if they have them.

Sign up online or call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 to register. Call or e-mail with questions.

Make Your Own Terrarium

Dates: Tuesday, April 14
Time: 7 - 9 p.m.
Instructor: Jimmy Lohr
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites: None
Fee: $ 20 members; $30 non-members; $25 material fee
Location: Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Students in this class will learn how to create a living garden under glass while discussing different styles of terrariums and containers (open versus closed and wet versus dry), plant selection, visual design and proper care. Attendees are asked to bring a container — from a glass bowl to an apothecary jar — for making their own terrariums. All other materials, including soil, moss, rocks and plants, will be provided.

Sign up online or call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 to register. Call or e-mail with questions.

The Ever-Blooming Garden: Color and Light in Mosaic Glass

Dates: Thursday, April 16
Time: 7 - 9 p.m.
Instructor: Daviea Davis
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites: None
Fee: $ 20 members; $30 non-members; $5 material fee
Location: Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Students in this class will create their own spring-themed 8” x 12” sun catcher using tumbled stained glass pieces as the instructor introduces the ancient mosaic art form in a fun, casual way.

Sign up online or call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 to register. Call or e-mail with questions.

Introduction to Orchids

Dates: Thursday, April 16
Time: 7 - 9 p.m.
Instructor: Demetria Marsh
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites: None
Fee: $ 20 members; $30 non-members
Location: Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

In this course, students will learn all about home orchid care, as well as discuss common varieties and their histories. Those who register by April 6 may choose to purchase their own Phalaenopsis grown locally by Bidwell Training Center.

Sign up online or call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 to register. Call or e-mail with questions.

Beginning Bonsai Workshop

Dates: Saturday, April 18
Time: 10 a.m. - noon
Instructor: Kevin Haughey
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites: None
Fee: $ 25 members; $35 non-members; $40 material fee
Location: Botany Hall at Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens

In this hands-on workshop, students will have the opportunity to study the timeless and ancient art of bonsai as they learn the horticultural techniques of styling, wiring, potting and root pruning. All materials will be provided, and each participant will take home a completed dwarf garden juniper bonsai. Participants should bring a pair of hand pruners if they have them.

Sign up online or call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 to register. Call or e-mail with questions.

Bonsai Over Rock for Beginners

Dates: Saturday, April 25
Time: 10 a.m. - noon
Instructor: Dr. Norbert Pietrzak
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites: None
Fee: $ 25 members; $35 non-members; $45 material fee
Location: Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Students in this class will learn how to plant, prune and maintain bonsai through creation of a root-over-rock specimen — in this case, a juniper trained over tufa rock. Participants should bring a pair of hand pruners if they have them.

Sign up online or call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 to register. Call or e-mail with questions.

Bird Drawing

Dates: Saturday, April 25; May 2, 9 and 16
Time: 1 - 4 p.m.
Instructor: Marianne Pionati-Hilke
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites:
Fee: $ 120 members; $144 non-members
Location: Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

In this four-week class, nature lovers will learn to draw what they see, using colored pencil to apply basic drawing principles and techniques to capture beautiful birds on paper.

Sign up online or call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 to register. Call or e-mail with questions.

Bonsai Maple Forest

Dates: Saturday, May 9
Time: 10 a.m. - noon
Instructor: Dr. Norbert Pietrzak
Objective:
Level: N/A
Prerequisites: None
Fee: $ 25 members; $35 non-members; $45 material fee
Location: Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Students in this class will learn how to plant, prune and maintain bonsai through creation of a spectacular landscape using five maple seedlings. Participants should bring a pair of hand pruners if they have them.

Sign up online or call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 to register. Call or e-mail with questions.