Returning the Gift: How do we reciprocate the gifts of the plants?

Robin Wall Kimmerer, PhD, Distinguished Teaching Professor and Director, Center for Native Peoples and the Environment

Location: Hunnewell Building Arnold Arboretum

This workshop with Robin Wall Kimmerer, indigenous plant scientist and distinguished teacher, engages participants in exploring the material and cultural gifts of the plants, from ecosystem services, to food, medicine and lessons on how we might live. Through guided observations, readings, and writing, together we will explore how we might reciprocate those gifts, with gifts of our own. Robin is the author of Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants.

Braiding Sweetgrass: the teachings of plants

Robin Wall Kimmerer , PhD, Distinguished Teaching Professor and Director, Center for Native Peoples and the Environment

Location: Hunnewell Building, Arnold Arboretum

Drawing on her life as an indigenous plant scientist, a teacher, a writer and a mother, Robin Wall Kimmerer will share ideas found in her award-winning book, Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants, in which she shows how plants—asters and goldenrod, strawberries and squash and sweetgrass—offer us gifts and lessons, even if we’ve forgotten how to hear their voices. In traditional ecological knowledge, plants are regarded not only as persons, but as among our oldest teachers. If plants are our teachers, what are they teaching us and how can we be better students? In a rich braid of ecological science, indigenous philosophy and literary reflections that range from the creation of Turtle Island to the forces that threaten its flourishing today, she explores and celebrates the material and cultural gifts of plants and our responsibilities for reciprocal relationship with the rest of the living world.

Volunteer to be an Arnold Arboretum Field Study Guice

Make a difference volunteering as an Arnold Arboretum Field Study Guide. We will train you to lead science programs in our landscape with elementary school groups. Contact the Manager of Children’s Education at 617-384-5239 or email childrensed@arnarb.harvard.edu by August 19 for an interview for fall training. For more information go to:

Training begins August 31. Apply now!

Volunteer to be an Arnold Arboretum Field Study Guice

Make a difference volunteering as an Arnold Arboretum Field Study Guide. We will train you to lead science programs in our landscape with elementary school groups. Contact the Manager of Children’s Education at 617-384-5239 or email childrensed@arnarb.harvard.edu by August 19 for an interview for fall training. For more information go to:

Training begins August 31. Apply now!

Volunteer to be an Arnold Arboretum Field Study Guice

Make a difference volunteering as an Arnold Arboretum Field Study Guide. We will train you to lead science programs in our landscape with elementary school groups. Contact the Manager of Children’s Education at 617-384-5239 or email childrensed@arnarb.harvard.edu by August 19 for an interview for fall training. For more information go to:

Training begins August 31. Apply now!