Winter in the Garden is far from a sleepy season. With the deciduous trees stripped of their leaves and the branches reaching over and across one other, the grounds adopt a new face—one defined by stark lines and contrasts sparked with small bunches of colorful berries. Groups of birds lunch in and around the trees, and if you’re lucky, you’ll catch sight of a hunting raptor, a Red-tailed Hawk or a Great-horned Owl on a diurnal run. In the conifers you’ll see the classic hunter greens of snow-dusted pine needles arching above the first blooming snowdrops.
Once you’ve admired the New York miniatures of the Holiday Train Show with all its twinkling lights, and stopped to sing along with your kids during a performance of All Aboard with Thomas Friends, be sure to save some daylight for a walk in the 50-acre Forest. It’s about as close as you can get to seclusion in NYC, and well worth the time spent aimlessly wandering the winding trails. And I do mean aimlessly—it’s pretty gratifying to find yourself strolling along a path you’ve never seen before, more so with a little snow blanketing the branches above.
The Ross Conifer Arboretum is another can’t-miss spot during the colder months, where pines, firs, and spruces come into their own among nearly 250 specimens. You’ll find a diversity of form and color among the evergreens, and the Benenson Ornamental Conifers tucked deep inside the Garden offer a peaceful escape for sitting or exploring. And for those more keen to take advantage of our guided tours, winter offers plenty of indoor and outdoor options—including Landmarks of the NYBG, explorations of the Conservatory collections, and Winter Plant Berry tours—to pique your interests. All told, winter is one of the best seasons to experience the depth of beauty that nature has to offer.
Have a look at our winter calendar for more.
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