Greenwich Historical Society Celebrates Spring with Gardening-Themed Programs 

Spring has sprung and to celebrate Greenwich Historical Society presents a series of unique events for creating beautiful outdoor and indoor spaces with inspirational experts to show the way.

“The start of spring is the perfect time to inspire the community on ways to enhance their gardens and homes,” says Dianne Niklaus, Historical Society Director of Marketing and Communications.  “We kick off the series with experts who will provide an historical perspective on Connecticut’s parks and gardens and the fascinating history and evolution of New York City’s flower trade, in partnership with Greenwich Botanical Garden. Sleepy Cat Farm Estate Manager and Head Gardener Alan Gorkin will demonstrate how to create a beautiful garden trellis, and our annual Artful Arrangements series with Master Florist Trish O’Sullivan always sells-out.”

Connecticut Gardens book cover of River Road Farm: Photography © Caryn B. Davis

A Brief History of Connecticut’s Public Parks & Gardens with Chris Lawrie
Wednesday, March 27
5:30 – 6:45 pm
Location: Greenwich Botanical Garden Center

Renowned landscape design and construction consultant Chris Lawrie will take participants on an illustrative exploration into historic gardens throughout the world and the history of the American park movement as a prelude to a discussion of Connecticut’s most beautiful public parks and historic gardens and the people and motivations behind these masterpieces.

Lawrie resides in Lyme. He was the writer for Caryn B. Davis’s most recent book titled Connecticut Gardens. For more information and to register:

New York City Historic Floral District, book cover by author James Francois Pijuan

The History of The New York Flower Market
Tuesday, April 2, 2024
6:00 – 7:30 pm
Location: Greenwich Botanical Garden Center

Accomplished floral designer and author James Francois Pijuan will present an illustrated lecture on the fascinating history of New York City’s flower trade, the development of the district and how it has evolved over the years. A second follow-up event, A Walking Tour of the New York Flower Market with James Francois, will occur later in the month. Details will be posted on the Historical Society’s website.

Pijuan’s creative flair, deep knowledge and innovative outlook has attracted exemplary clients including heads of state and celebrities. He has authored a book to preserve the rich history of the Floral District and its community of artists and businesses. He is currently spearheading efforts to establish the first-ever floral museum, aptly named NYC Historic Floral District Museum, which will shine a spotlight on the industry’s special place in the city and the world.  For more information and to register:

Garden Trellis, courtesy of Sleepy Cat Farm

Springtime with Sleepy Cat Farm: Trellis Talk and Demonstration with Alan Gorkin

Tuesday, April 16
6:00 – 7:30 pm
Location: Greenwich Historical Society Vanderbilt Education Center

Alan Gorkin, estate manager and head gardener of Greenwich’s Sleepy Cat Farm, will demonstrate how to make a garden trellis, sharing tips and tricks with handouts for creating one at home. His talk will be followed by a discussion of best growing practices for several plants, trellis benefits, ideal combinations and growing hints. Participants will have the opportunity to choose from a collection of heirloom seeds and/or plants (vegetables and flowers) to use at home to create their own design.

Prior to joining Sleep Cat Farm, Gorkin worked at Brooklyn Botanic Gardens where he managed gardens and taught botany to inner city youth. He later managed the greenhouse and cutting gardens at Old Westbury Gardens before purchasing Earth Garden Forest in New Canaan.  For more information and to register:

Peony French Garden, courtesy of Trish O’Sullivan

Artful Arrangements Peony Madness: French Garden Floral Arrangement

Tuesday, May 21
11:00 am – 1:00 pm
Location: Greenwich Historical Society Vanderbilt Education Center

Acclaimed Emmy-Award winning Master Florist Trish O’Sullivan will demonstrate how to create the “Parisian soft palette” and instruct on color and shade selection for creating lush and chic floral designs. A glorious assortment of pink, coral and burgundy peonies, along with Queen Ann’s lace, vines and lavender will elegantly spill over the sides of a ceramic container which each participant will receive for creating their own design to take home with them. O’Sullivan will share the tips and tricks of the trade for keeping flowers looking fresh and long lasting without chemicals or floral foam.

O’Sullivan brings her floral vision, attention to detail, exuberant love of flowers and extensive floral knowledge not only to her many prestigious commercial and private clients, but also to the classes and workshops she teaches.

She previously served as the Director of the New York Botanical Garden Floral Design Program and is currently teaching Master Floral Design Classes at New York Botanical Garden, New Canaan Nature Center, Silvermine Art Center, Bartlett Arboretum and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Westport.  For more information and to register: