Adult Programs

Program Options & Details

The New Canaan Nature Center provides a wide variety of programming for adults. Pre-registration is recommended.

Upcoming Dates: TBD
9:15am-10:15am

Calling all adults! Join preschool teacher and certified yoga instructor, Lisa Socci, for a FREE pop-up yoga class right here at NCNC. Did you know…? Not only does morning yoga help you feel good, it can also help you sleep better at night, set a positive tone for your entire day, and encourage health habits.

No experience or toe-touching flexibility required. Please bring a yoga mat or towel and a water bottle too!

Donations are greatly appreciated and will go to benefit the New Canaan Nature Center.

Devil’s Den Hike
POSTPONED – Please check back soon for a new date!

Meet our Naturalists at Devil’s Den Preserve in Weston (the Nature Conservancy’s largest nature preserve in Connecticut) for a healthy & invigorating hike. This three-mile loop may be strenuous at times, so please bring comfortable shoes, layers and a water bottle. Feel free to pack a lunch and stay for a picnic!

For more information or to reserve your spot today,
please contact our Director of Environmental Education.

Members: Free / Non-Members: Free
ALL ages are welcome!

The New Canaan Nature Center serves as a satellite site for the New York Botanical Gardens horticulture and flower-arranging classes.

This cooperative relationship provides close to 300 adults each year with a wide array of first-class programs including NYBG’s widely regarded certification classes.

See below for upcoming class descriptions.

Pink Peonies: Contemporary Tabletop Design

Tuesday, 5/5/2020, 10:30am – 3:00pm, O’Sullivan

With gorgeous pink palettes and intoxicating fragrance, peonies are the blossoms most loved by floral designers and enthusiasts. You will learn how to select complementary shades and vases to offset their soft beauty. Then, finish your creation by adding textural grey floral and botanical elements for a centerpiece with a modern, monochromatic look. $125 materials fee.

Plants for Landscaping

Tuesdays, 5/12/2020 – 6/16/2020, 10:00am – 12:40pm, Ruggiero

Examine the use of plants in the landscape with an emphasis on choosing the right plant for the right place, based on site-specific design and maintenance criteria. Learn aspects of special landscape values such as size, texture, color, and flowering and fruiting seasons. Review the trees, shrubs, ground covers, annuals, and perennials suitable for landscaping in this region. Please dress for the weather and wear comfortable shoes.

Antique Roses & Ferns: A Modern Take

Tuesday, 6/2/2020, 10:30am – 3:00pm, O’Sullivan

Take creative inspiration from 19th- and 20th-century English gardens blooming with delicate roses with names like Amnesia, Quicksand, and Early Grey. Step-by-step, learn easy techniques for crafting an opulent tabletop from a bygone era. Our choice of container-faux mercury glass footed compote bowls and fern covered glass hurricane vases-is the key that turns Victorian styling into modern design. $125 materials fee.

Please bring: Pruners and a bag/box to take your arrangement home.

The New Canaan Nature Center serves as a satellite site for the New York Botanical Gardens horticulture and flower-arranging classes.

Vegetable Gardening Saturday

Saturday, 5/30/2020, 10:00am – 5:00pm

Fresh, homegrown vegetables are healthy and flavorful, and don’t have to be difficult to grow. Learn how to properly prepare beds and soils; gain key tips on planting and sowing seeds; discover ecologically friendly ways to keep pests at bay so you can have the vegetable garden you’ve always wanted! Please bring lunch.

Vegetable Gardening Basics
10:00am – 12:00 pm, Beyers
Vegetables have their own special requirements, and whether you’re a novice or an experienced grower, you’ll get more from your garden this season using these time- tested techniques. The two-hour session covers site selection, bed and soil preparation, optimal planting times, and harvesting strategies.

Seed Starting Primer
12:45pm – 2:45 pm, Grossman
Seed starting is a fun way to expand your garden’s potential. This class covers the basics, including choosing what seeds to start and the proper location, lighting, containers, watering techniques, and soil mixes to ensure your success. Receive a packet of seeds to grow at home.

Protect Your Plants from Pests
3:00pm – 5:00pm, Marsh
All of your hard work in the garden should produce healthful, nutritious food; so don’t let a host of pest problems ruin this for you. Learn a variety of environmentally friendly and sustainable ways to minimize or eliminate pests in your veggie garden, including promoting beneficial insects that attack bad bugs.

The New Canaan Nature Center serves as a satellite site for the Native Plant Trust, the nation’s first plant conservation organization. This cooperative relationship provides adults with a wide array of first-class programs focused on conserving and promoting New England’s native plants and landscapes.

See below for upcoming class descriptions.

Native Plant Design for Landscape Professionals

POSTPONED until Fall 2020 – new date TBD

Renowned landscape designer Edwina Von Gal will present a review of nature-based design and its role in client engagement toward important environmental action. Edwina will address fundamentals using examples from her projects and her own garden. She will also introduce her new initiative: “Two Thirds for the Birds,” which calls on the landscape profession to plant native plants and to use more ecologically sound management methods. This presentation will be followed by a walk through the surrounding landscape for a group discussion about nature-based design challenges and solutions.

Program Options & Details

The New Canaan Nature Center provides a wide variety of programming for adults. Pre-registration is recommended.

The next NCNC Hiking Group hike date is TBD.
Please stay tuned for more information coming soon!

Members: Free / Non-Members: Free
ALL ages are welcome!

Saturday, July 7th 
9:15am-10:15am
*Pre-registration by Thursday, July 5th at 12pm is required.

Saturday, July 21st
9:15am-10:15am
*Pre-registration by Thursday, July 19th at 12pm is required.

Calling all adults! Join preschool teacher and certified yoga instructor, Lisa Socci, for a pop-up morning yoga class right here at NCNC. Did you know…? Not only does morning yoga help you feel good, it can also help you sleep better at night, set a positive tone for your entire day, and encourage health habits. These FREE classes will be held in the Visitor Center’s Sturgess Room – donations are greatly appreciated and will go to benefit the New Canaan Nature Center.

No experience or toe-touching flexibility required. Please bring a yoga mat or towel. Bring a water bottle too!

The New Canaan Nature Center serves as a satellite site for the New York Botanical Gardens horticulture and flower-arranging classes.

This cooperative relationship provides close to 300 adults each year with a wide array of first-class programs including NYBG’s widely regarded certification classes.

See below for upcoming class descriptions.

Pruning: How, When, and Where

Saturday, 3/3/2018, 10am – 3pm, Ann Perkowski
This one-day course covers the basics of pruning evergreens, deciduous trees, and shrubs, as well as how to maintain the woody plants in your garden. Bring your pruners—we’ll discuss tool selection and maintenance, then spend the afternoon outdoors analyzing proper techniques. Class is held rain or shine. Please dress for the weather and bring lunch.

Intro to Landscape Design

3 Thursdays: 3/8, 3/15, & 3/22/2018, 10am – 1pm, Sheri Forster
Gain an introduction to the terminology, concepts, and basic principles of landscape design through lectures and simple two-dimensional exercises. This course is recommended for students with little or no background in design who want to design for their own home or who are considering a Certificate.

Weekend Garden Design Workshop

2 Saturdays: 3/17 & 3/24/2018, 10am – 2:30pm, Daryl Beyers
Good garden design isn’t easy, but for anyone with a passion for plants, a little imagination, and proper guidance, it is possible to succeed. Learn the basics of garden design, review examples that work for different architectural styles and site conditions, and develop a go-to plant list for your home landscape. In the second session, you will develop and draw a basic design plan for your garden that you can take home to refine and implement come spring.

The New Canaan Nature Center serves as a satellite site for the New York Botanical Gardens horticulture and flower-arranging classes.

Join us on Saturday, February 24th for three Saturday Gardening Workshops to Wake Up Your Garden! Sign up for one workshop or stay the entire day and enjoy all three!

Spring is just around the corner, and with a little advance preparation you will be ready to start the growing season right. Gain insights into getting the soil prepped and ready to go, best pruning practices, and waking up the garden after winter. Have the healthiest, best-looking garden in your neighborhood!

See below for workshop descriptions.

Spring Gardeners Task List

10am – 12pm, Daryl Beyers
Spring cleaning in the garden can be fun. Get shrub and herbaceous borders spruced up and looking good! Review a checklist of tasks to be performed during spring maintenance, ranging from raking off winter mulch to looking for signs of winter injury and noting where gaps in the garden can be filled. All this gives your garden a head start on a great growing season.

Soil Basics: Get it Right!

12:45pm – 2:45pm, Richard Rosiello
If you get your soil right from the start, your garden will explode in lushness. Rich, nutritious soil makes for large, healthy plants and reduces the need for regular fertilization. Learn the difference between soil structure and texture; how these differences affect plant growth; and how you can modify your soil to improve its qualities. Give your garden a solid foundation, and you’ll reap the benefits for years to come.

Pruning: Shape-Up For Spring

3pm – 5pm, Michael Ruggiero
Are you intimidated by the idea of pruning? March is a great time to get your woody plants in shape by thinning out overgrowth to create open, healthy, beautiful trees and shrubs. Learn how and when to prune, the tools needed for the job, why pruning is necessary, and the difference between maintenance and rejuvenation pruning.

Pre-registration recommended for adult programs

Hiking Group

Make friends and enjoy the outdoors during our adult hiking programs. Check program options and details for where and when the next hike will take place!

New York Botanical Garden

The New Canaan Nature Center serves as a satellite site for the New York Botanical Gardens horticulture and flower-arranging classes. This cooperative relationship provides close to 300 adults each year with a wide array of first-class programs including NYBG’s widely regarded certification classes.