New York Botanical Garden Celebrates 125th Anniversary This Year; Celebration Starts With The Annual Orchid Show

The landmark Enid A. Haupt Conservatory in the background.
The landmark Enid A. Haupt Conservatory in the background.

As our beloved Bronx institution The New York Garden celebrates its 125th anniversary this year, they will be doing so by starting out with the 14th Annual Orchid Show next month.

If you’ve ever been to the Orchid Show, you know that up with The Holiday Train Show (which is still running until January 18th so you still have time!), it’s one of the most exciting times at NYBG as thousands of orchids are artfully arranged for all to enjoy and see one of nature’s most beautiful creations.

This year’s show is called ‘Orchidelirium‘ which as NYBG describes it:

“The 19th-century craze sparked by a single orchid bloom, which came to be known as Orchidelirium, is the inspiration for The New York Botanical Garden’s 14th annual Orchid Show, which opens on February 27 and runs through April 17, 2016. Visitors to the landmark Enid A. Haupt Conservatory will be transported on an epic journey that engages all of the senses and underscores the allure and intrigue of these exquisite beauties. Thousands of orchids in a stunning array of colors, sizes, shapes, and textures will be showcased, highlighting the far-flung adventures of daring explorers who risked life and limb to secure these captivating and exotic flowers from danger-laden jungles around the world for determined collectors. From its origins in England as a symbol of power, wealth, and opulence, the frenzied fascination with orchids underpins the exhibition, which illustrates their transition from the wild to their display and cultivation as well as the Garden’s important role in their conservation today”


What’s wonderful about the Orchid Show is that it is more than a display but it’s also extremely educational where you can learn about the beautiful flower—and let’s not forget the popular Orchid Evenings for adults so that parents or loved ones can have a nice date night or just bring your friends and have a drink at the Conservatory in the evening.

The New York Botanical Gardens are special any time of the year but it’s especially magical at night so this is one of the best ways to experience the show. During the exhibition, which runs from February 27th through April 17th, 2016, the following is a list of programming for ‘Orchidelirium’:

  • Orchid Evenings on Saturdays (March 5, 12, 19, 26, April 2, 9, 16), Friday (April 8), and Thursday (April 14, LGBT night) bring a nighttime cocktail experience to The Orchid Show: Orchidelirium. One of New York City’s most romantic date night activities, Orchid Evenings start at 6:30 pm and include a complimentary cocktail, as well as live music in the Pine Tree Café. Visitors can also upgrade to V.I.P. status and enjoy an Orchid Lounge. Non-Member $35/Member $25 (Adults 21 and over) Advance tickets recommended.
  • In partnership with the Poetry Society of America, Poetry for Every Season: Ada Limon features poems in the landscape celebrating spring, flowers, and beauty.
  • World Beat: Music and Dance Around the World of Orchids brings live performances from cultures around the world on Saturdays and Sundays throughout the exhibition.
  • On weekends during the exhibition, orchid care demonstrations with topics such as “Easy Orchid Care,” “Fantastically Fragrant Orchids,” and “Orchid Tips for Amateurs” show visitors how to care for their own orchids.
  • Cell phone tour stops at NYBG Shop will be available to provide answers to frequently asked orchid questions and allow visitors to dial up care tips on watering and feeding, reblooming, and repotting for several specific types of orchids. Thousands of top-quality orchids, from exotic, hard-to-find specimens for connoisseurs to elegant yet easy-to-grow varieties for beginners, are available for purchase at NYBG Shop, along with orchid products and books.


For 125 years, The New York Botanical Garden has been an amazing oasis and a world renowned leader in botany right here in our very own borough. In a press release, NYBG writes:

“In 1888 the Garden’s founders, Dr. Nathaniel Lord Britton, a Columbia University professor of botany and geology, and his wife, Elizabeth Knight Britton, an avid and respected scholar of mosses, traveled to London and visited the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Inspired by what they saw, the Brittons returned to New York determined to create a similar institution. On April 28, 1891, the Legislature of the State of New York passed an act incorporating The New York Botanical Garden, providing for the building and development of “a public botanic garden of the highest class” on 250 acres of land in northernmost New York City “for the collection and culture of plants, flowers, shrubs and trees, [and] the advancement of botanical science and knowledge…and for the entertainment, recreation, and instruction of the people.”

Check out some of our images from NYBG including last year’s Orchid Show and the record smashing Frida Kahlo exhibition:


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Ed García Conde

Ed García Conde is a life-long Bronxite who spends his time documenting the people, places, and things that make the borough a special place in the hopes of dispelling the negative stereotypes associated with The Bronx. His writings are often cited by mainstream media and is often consulted for his expertise on the borough's rich history.