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Here you will find a calendar of Friends’ activities in the Gardens including lunchtime talks, social events, exhibitions and the ever-popular spring and autumn plant sales. In addition to events arranged by the Friends, we include some events arranged by the Gardens and by other organisations. A full list of events arranged by the Gardens is in their What's On webpage.

Lunchtime talks are held at 12.30pm every Thursday from February to November in the Gardens’ Theatrette. Talks last for 1 hour. Admission is by gold coin donation. There is no need to book. Some other events do require booking – please see individual items.

The ANBG Theatrette has a capacity of 90 seats. To avoid a breach of fire regulations, event organisers will monitor numbers and decline entry once all seats have been filled. We recommend that audience members arrive early to secure a seat.

See all lunchtime talks | See all the recent events

Event title Date Details
Doug Laing ‘The Apothecary’s garden – a gem in London’s heart’ Thursday, 23 August 2018 - 12:30pm

Doug, chair of the Thursday Talks Committee, will trace the history of the Chelsea Physic Garden in London – this tiny garden that has left an indelible mark on modern pharmacology and medicine.

Black Mountain Symposium 2018 Friday, 24 August 2018 (All day) to Saturday, 25 August 2018 (All day)

Black Mountain was declared a nature reserve on 23 July 1970. In the lead-up to the 50th anniversary of this declaration, the Friends of Black Mountain in association with the Molonglo Catchment Group is holding a Symposium at which invited speakers will give presentations summarising what we know about the area.

Themed talks will be on Friday 24 August, followed by drinks and nibbles. Themed walks will be held on Black Mountain on the morning of Saturday 25 August 2018.

Julie Ryder ‘Nature as muse: the interaction between art and botany’ Thursday, 30 August 2018 - 12:30pm

Julie, a Canberra textile designer and artist, will talk on the profound influences botany has had on her work.  She uses natural dyeing, mordant printing, screen-printing and embroidery as a language on cloth to tell narratives about place and people

ANBG Friends Photographic Group – August meeting - walk Friday, 31 August 2018 - 7:30am to 9:30am

Early Morning Walk in the Gardens

Followed by breakfast at Pollen Café and 10:30 members meeting.

ANBG Friends Photographic Group – August meeting - talk Friday, 31 August 2018 - 10:30am to 12:00pm

Canberra Nature Map

Aaron Clausen – Founder of Canberra Nature Map and program creator of ‘NatureMapr’ an App that is photographically recording a large database of the flora and fauna of the ACT and surrounds; and
Dr Michael Mulvaney, Research Scientist, Conservation Research Unit, Environment and Sustainable Development Directorate, ACT Government.

Dr Richard Groves ‘The Genus Acacia at home and abroad’ Thursday, 6 September 2018 - 12:30pm

On this week’s anniversary of the 108th Wattle Day, Richard, formerly from CSIRO Plant Industry, will briefly summarise the biological significance of the genus Acacia in Australia – it is the most species-rich of any Australian genus.

Dr Erin Walsh ‘History, human brain and scientific illustration’ Thursday, 13 September 2018 - 12:30pm

Erin’s talk will bring together history, the human brain, and the place of scientific illustration in academia and the world at large. Drawing (pun intended) from her scientific and artistic practice, the talk will conclude with some step-by-step examples of how her illustrations are created

Bushland Nature Trail - walks Thursday, 20 September 2018 - 10:00am to 11:30am, Thursday, 18 October 2018 - 10:00am to 11:30am

Join us on a free walk to discover the variety of plants on the Bushland Nature Trail. The trail is in the Bushland Precinct of the Gardens and is part of the local Black Mountain environment. Accompanied by a Volunteer Guide, discover the plants flowering at this time of year and enjoy spectacular views over Lake Burley Griffin. Our walk will end at the Lookout and return along the trail to the Visitor Centre. Bookings essential.

Dr Matthew Colloff ‘Landscapes of our hearts’ Thursday, 20 September 2018 - 12:30pm

Matt, from the CSIRO, will talk about the evolving relationship between people and landscapes; how non-Indigenous Australians are re-framing their perspectives on the nature of the Australian environment and how they contrast and overlap those of Indigenous Australians.

Wake Up with the Birds Saturday, 22 September 2018 - 7:45am to 9:15am

The Friends of the Australian National Botanic Gardens present Wake Up With the Birds.

This is a wonderful opportunity to observe some of Canberra's amazing birdlife in the beautiful surrounds of the Australian National Botanic Gardens.

Stroll through the Gardens early on a spring morning when the birds are nesting and are at their most active. Each small group is led by a knowledgeable guide. If you wish, after the guided walk stay on at the cafe, Pollen, for a drink and/or breakfast (Please book and pay for separately).