N° 47 — March 30, 2021
Happy spring! Please enjoy our regular updates and insights from FONA, the U.S. National Arboretum, and our award-winning Washington Youth Garden.
Exciting changes are coming to Washington Youth Garden! As WYG embarks on its 50th anniversary serving our community, we are redesigning our 1-acre vegetable garden nestled near the Arboretum's Capitol Columns.

We are dreaming big so the garden better engages Arboretum visitors and immerses them in self-guided activities. As part of this multi-year project, we will install new signage, modify the garden's layout, upgrade the nature play features, and much more!
As we reflect on the garden's past 50 years, we are working with landscape designers Groundsmith Collective to envision how we want Washington Youth Garden to look for the next 50 years.

You play a part in this redesign, too! Keep an eye out in the coming weeks in FONA Field Notes for surveys soliciting public feedback on these designs.
A New Way to Forest Bathe
We are piloting a "pay what you can" ticket model starting in April to make our forest bathing events more accessible to all members of our community.

Our suggested ticket price is $35 ($28 for FONA members). This covers the costs of our guide, the snacks and PPE we provide participants, and our staff's time spent organizing these events.

However, if paying $35 would prohibit you from attending this event, please pay what you can. If you are able to pay more than the suggested ticket price, the difference will go towards covering the cost of those in our community who can’t.

We want to provide a quality event that facilitates a connection to the land, but we also believe all members of our community should have access to this event.

Get your April forest bathing tickets:
Spring in the City
Deciduous magnolias are bursting with color and turning the Arboretum's Holly & Magnolia Collections into a floral oasis.

This 10-acre collection is one of the oldest at the National Arboretum. Step back in time and learn about the collection's history and the curators who bring it to life.

Cherry blossoms are in full swing at the Arboretum — stop by and see for yourself! The Arboretum has a 3.2-mile long self-guided tour so you can enjoy and learn about the blossoms. Please note that weekends get busy this time of year.

Here's how to access the tour:

DC Teachers Night
Are you a DC-area teacher interested in environmental education? The DC Environmental Education Consortium is hosting a free online event on April 8th from 5 to 6:30 PM to share resources how to engage students in environmental education. Make sure to register in advance.

Photo from: U.S. National Arboretum
Arboretum Activities
Join the National Arboretum on Thursday, April 22nd at 2 PM for Pressing Matters, a free, virtual event series that explores the National Arboretum's herbarium collection.

During their first installment of this series, participants will learn how plants from all over the world are preserved in the form of herbarium specimens and why they are valuable resources for researchers. Learn from Dr. Harlan Svoboda, USNA Herbarium Curator, about what it takes to curate and maintain 800,000 dried plant specimens.

Vendor Corner
Although the Lahr and Garden Fair plant sales are both cancelled this year, there are still ways to support the wonderful vendors.

Radical Roots Organic Farm offers a wide array of certified organic vegetable, herb, and fruiting shrub plants. Check out their website for online ordering or visit them at a local plant sale.

The Arboretum is open every day from 8 AM - 5 PM except December 25th. Some buildings and collections remain closed to ensure visitor and staff safety.