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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 current events | See all the recent events

Event title Date Details
Brendan Lepschi ‘Your Time Would Be Better Spent Digging Holes – Taxonomy, Plant Names and Why Nothing Ever Stays the Same’ Thursday, 25 July 2019 - 12:30pm

Brendan, Curator at the Australian National Herbarium, will discuss some of the reasons plant names change and outline the principles of botanical nomenclature and the rules governing it, using members of the iconic Australian family Goodeniaceae as an example.

Dr Jane Roberts ‘Value of Wetlands and Swamps’ Thursday, 1 August 2019 - 12:30pm

Jane, a wetland ecologist, will talk about wetlands, and how they are currently of scientific interest for their role in carbon storage, but that has not always been how they have been valued.  An historical perspective of wetland values and their changes say more about human society than about wetlands.

Damian Wrigley ‘Australian Seed Bank Partnership’ Thursday, 8 August 2019 - 12:30pm

Damian, from the Australian Seed Bank Partnership (ASBP), will outline how the ASBP is contributing to global conservation efforts and will give an update on the Seed Science Forum to be held at the ANBG in 2020.

Anke Maria Hoefer ‘Frogwatch Successfully Marrying Citizen Science and Community Engagement Since 2002’ Thursday, 15 August 2019 - 12:30pm

Anke Maria, from the ACT and Regional Frogwatch Program, will introduce you to the program that engages hundreds of volunteers each year. The data collected feeds into a wide range of frog projects, including frog census, climate change investigations and frog habitat studies. NOTE: Changed date

Dr Laura Rayner ‘Parrot Central for a Bird on the Edge’ Thursday, 22 August 2019 - 12:30pm

Laura, a conservation ecologist, will bring us up-to-date on her research on Superb Parrots – a superb bird pushed to the very edge of its natural range by climate change and land clearing.  It is now a race against time to determine what pressures the parrot is facing and what needs to be done to secure its future.

Glenn Cocking ‘Moths and Bushblitzes’ Thursday, 29 August 2019 - 12:30pm

Glenn, a volunteer curator at the Australian National Insect Collection, will discuss the moth fauna of Black Mountain in the context of some general observations about moths, and how to understand the families present in the ACT, and tell some stories about an eclectic selection of particular species from wider afield. NOTE: Changed date

Dr Phillip Kodela ‘Wattle we do with Acacia’ Thursday, 5 September 2019 - 12:30pm

Philip, from the Department of Environment and Energy, will discuss interesting facts and figures about this genus and related taxa, including recent taxonomic debates and developments in the Flora of Australia and the plant identification tool WATTLE.

Dr Patrick De Decker ‘The Belgica Expedition in Antarctic Waters 1897-1899’ Thursday, 12 September 2019 - 12:30pm

Patrick, an Emeritus Professor, at the ANU, will tell the tale of amazing scientific achievements and human endeavor on The Belgica Expedition.  He will discuss scientific data obtained during the expedition and their subsequent publications over 40 years.

Dr Jim Peacock ‘Can Plants Meet the Challenge of the Food Needed for the World’s Growing Population’ Thursday, 19 September 2019 - 12:30pm

Jim, a CSIRO Fellow and former Australian Chief Scientist, is a leader in plant molecular biology, has made a significant contribution to Australian science, agribusiness and science education in schools.  His talk will focus on the critical question, can plants meet the challenge of the food needed to meet the world’s growing population?

Jennifer Rowland ‘Alexander von Humboldt, Scientific Traveller’ Thursday, 26 September 2019 - 12:30pm

Jennifer is a former demographer, and also a member of the Friends of the ANBG and Cactus and Succulent Societies. To mark the 250th anniversary of the birth of Alexander von Humboldt, Jennifer will discuss his life, plant discoveries, trip to Central America and legacies which are still being considered as the foundation of many scientific and artistic endeavours today.