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While you may view our full program on the Events Page of our website, we are pleased to highlight these upcoming programs.

January 5, 2022

Best wishes to all for a very Happy New Year!

In addition to the programs featured here, we are offering the Community Garden Conference, a couple of special speakers programs and three programs by Master Gardeners. Please check out our website for more details and to register.

with Katy Lyness

Four consecutive Saturdays: January 8, 15, 22 and 29 from 1:00 to 4:00 PM



What better way to learn about and enjoy our natural world than to draw it? And what subject is more captivating than a flower? This intro course teaches you techniques for drawing using flowers as the primary focus. The class will include instruction in the use of drawing tools (graphite, pen and colored pencil), techniques for shading, elements of perspective, visualization of light on form, color theory and basic understanding of plant structure.

Katy Lyness is a passionate home gardener whose interests brought her to NYBG's Botanical Illustration Program. She has been represented in the American Society of Botanical Artists' Annual International Exhibition and is active in the Tri-State Botanical Artists Group. She has an MA in Art Education from Columbia University, Teacher's College.

A Materials List is available on our website under the program description.

Enrollment is limited to 16 students.

Please click on the Peony for more information and to register.


Native Plants - Designing to Attract Wildlife with Bruce Crawford

Sunday, February 6 - 4:00 PM

Even if you are unable to attend on Sunday, February 6, please consider registering for the program, as all proceeds from this program support the scholarship that is offered to students in the Landscape Technology Program at County College of Morris.


There has been a tremendous surge in use and interest in native plants. These plants are great for our many beneficial insects, offering leaves and pollen to eat and stems in which to overwinter. The challenge is how to organize these plants such that they provide an attractive garden for your home. Bruce will share his thoughts, starting from the ground up, on how to combine these plants into cohesive and attractive designs for your garden.

A longtime proponent of unusual and fun plants, Bruce had his own design/build gardening business for nearly 25 years, specializing in plantings for year-round interest. One of those gardens was published in Fine Gardening Magazine. From 2005 to 2020, Bruce was the Director of Rutgers Gardens, the botanical garden at Rutgers University, and from 2020 to 2021, he was the State Program Leader for Home and Public Horticulture with the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station. Bruce was also an instructor in the Landscape Architecture program at Rutgers University from 1987 to 2020. Currently, he is the Manager of Horticulture for the Morris County Park Commission. He lectures frequently to various groups and has yet to find a plant he doesn't like!

Please click on Bruce's picture for more information and to register.


Sunday, January 16 - 4:00 PM


Defined as "the absence of color", black in its many hues can highlight, offset and dramatize every real color in your garden. Understand how to use black hued plants for maximum impact. Over 75 dark beauties, including annuals, perennials, vines, trees and shrubs are featured in this compendium of powerful plants. Lesley will cover their habits and culture, and a useful plant list will be provided. To create rhythm, punctuate place, outline areas and focus the eye, nothing works like black. Keep the drama out of your house, and in the garden!

Lesley is a member of the Herb Society of America, The Council on Horticultural and Botanical Libraries, and Garden State Gardens, a consortium of New Jersey's public gardens of which she is a founding member and past President. Her column, The Garden Historian, is featured bi-monthly in Gardener News Magazine. Retired as Superintendent of Horticultural Education at New Jersey's Morris County Park Commission, Lesley offers illustrated lectures and hands-on workshops to garden clubs, plant and historical societies, Master Gardener groups and libraries.

Please click on Lesley's picture for more information and to register.


I took a walk along the Meadow behind the Frelinghuysen Mansion today; I strolled along the path towards the Pinetum on this lovely sunny afternoon, a welcome change from the last several cloudy, dreary days. The Meadow is under restoration to eliminate foreign invasive plants and install natives. The view across the meadow is quite bucolic and the walk very enjoyable. There are several benches to rest on along the way, one of which is surrounded by Ilex verticillata shrubs (Winterberry Holly) laden with red berries. The Pinetum holds many of our large collection of Conifers, among them a lovely Cedrus deodara cv. Kashmir (Deodar Cedar). In the woods across from the meadow, there are several beautiful Beech trees (Fagus grandifolia) with their smooth gray trunks and persistent leaves. Make time to take your own walk along this peaceful stretch at the Arboretum, you won't be sorry!

Click an image to see them all in our website's picture gallery. Picture credits: Margery Ennist.


We are happy to announce that the Friends of The Frelinghuysen Arboretum now have a YouTube channel.

Please visit by clicking the image (or go to:


We are pleased to make several of our previously recorded events available in case you missed one or another of them.

Go to our new prerecorded-events Events page for more information and to register and pay online.

Retail Partners

When shopping at our fine Retail Partners, please remember to present your Membership card at the beginning of your check out transaction. Our Retail Partners need to enter the discount at the beginning of that process.

If you have not yet used this wonderful Member Benefit, you can view our full list of Retail Partners by clicking here.

Amazon Smile

Don't forget to "SMILE!"Amazon Smile, that is!

Amazon, through the AmazonSmile Foundation will contribute 0.5% of your purchases on Amazon to a charitable organization you select. Please consider selecting The Friends of the Frelinghuysen Arboretum as your designated recipient from this wonderful program.

Click here and log in to your amazon account to designate the Friends as your charity.

All our events can be found on our Events Page where, we are happy to say, you can register and pay on line -- just click on the "Add to Cart" buttons on our Events page and Membership page. Questions or need more information? Email Lisa Bencivengo: or leave a message at (973) 937-8803.

That's it for this time. Hope you enjoyed this edition of the newsletter. Tell your friends about this handy way to keep up with activities at the Frelinghuysen Arboretum (click here for complete directions for subscribing.


Friends Staff will be out of the office until Fall 2021, however we will continue working remotely. Please note our new Post Office Box number and staff emails.

Friends of The Frelinghuysen Arboretum
Post Office Box 2267
Morristown, NJ 07962

Lisa Bencivengo:
Margery Ennist:



Morris County Park Commission has reopened the Frelinghuysen, Willowwood and Bamboo Brook Arboreta 7 days a week, from 8am to dusk.

  • Parking is limited. Buildings remain closed. Portajohns are available.
  • HUNTING IN THE PARKS - Be aware that deer hunting is permitted in many of the MCPC facilities, including the arboreta, during the fall and winter. The schedule and type (bow or firearm) is listed on the MCPC website here.

We will keep you posted as further updates become available.

Visit our website:
Email your comments or suggestions to


The Frelinghuysen Arboretum is a facility of the Morris County Park Commission

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