Adult Education

Whether you want to grow, dig or create, adult education at the Botanical Garden has something for everyone.  

Seasonal Classes and Workshops

Get growing at the Botanical Garden with our dynamic classes and workshops. Develop your gardening skills, explore your creative side or fuel your body with one of our many workshops.  

To see a complete listing of this seaon's classes and events, please view our Spring Education Catalog or visit the Calendar of Events.

Below is our policy for registering for classes, as well as our cancellation and refund policies.

Potting Bench

Designed for groups looking for a fun and exclusive outing at the Botanical Garden, Potting Bench classes are the perfect way to tap into your inner green thumb. Choose from three hands-on workshops to design a unique piece to take home and enjoy. All supplies are included in the cost of registration. Classes require a minimum of 8 people, maximum of 20 and must be booked 2 weeks in advance.  

All Classes are $40/adult. To request a workshop please fill out and submit our reservation form.

Choose from the following: 

  • Terrariums - Garden in miniature orbs and create your own small-scale ecosystem.
  • Succulent Dish Garden- Explore succulents and plant your own desktop desert.
  • Fairy Gardens - Celebrate gardening on a small scale and draw inspiration from fairies, gnomes and sprites to create your own miniature garden.

Annual Symposium

The annual symposium is the Botanical Garden’s signature educational opportunity for advancing gardening in Iowa. Each fall, four internationally acclaimed lecturers visit Des Moines to speak about current topics that impact home horticulture, plant sciences and/or ecology.

This year’s symposium theme is The Gardening Adventure. Our keynote speaker is internationally-known garden designer Jimi Blake, founder of Hunting Brook Gardens in Dublin, who will discuss creative planting through the seasons.  The Annual Symposium will inspire attendees to practice dynamic and innovative gardening in the modern world. Join us Saturday, Oct. 20 as Jimi Blake as well as Mike Kintgen, Julie Moir Messervy and Lloyd Traven share their unique gardening adventures. Learn more and register here. 

How to Register for classes and programs

Pre-registration is required for all classes and programs except where noted. Most workshops have registration deadlines; please check the Calendar of Events at for deadline dates. We encourage you to register early, as class sizes are limited. Please note, only named individuals on the Botanical Garden membership are eligible for the member rates. For questions, please call the education department at 515.402.4277.

Register by:

Telephone: Please call 515.402.4277 between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. To expedite your call, please have your credit card number and class selections ready.

Online: Online class registration is available anytime. Please visit the Calendar of Events at and follow the appropriate link(s).

Cancellations and Refunds

Class registrants who cancel five or more days prior to a class will received a full refund. Cancellations less than five days are non-refundable—please consider your payment a donation to the Botanical Garden. Refunds are not given for missed classes.

In the event a class is canceled, registrants will be fully refunded. You will be notified as early as possible via phone or email, so please be sure to provide accurate contact information when registering. The Botanical Garden is not responsible for lack of notification if not provided with accurate contact details.

Upcoming Events