Often called the founder of American landscape architecture, Frederick Law Olmsted led the way in preserving and conserving publicly accessible green spaces at a time when urban areas throughout the United States were being developed and growing by leaps and bounds. His work and guiding principles touched thousands of landscapes across the country—including many in Birmingham, Alabama—and continue to inspire new generations of landscape planners and conservation-minded organizations everywhere.

As organizations nationwide come together in 2022 to celebrate the 200th anniversary of Olmsted’s birth, join us Wednesday, February 16, 2022, at Birmingham Botanical Gardens as we welcome writer and filmmaker Laurence Cotton for a special presentation (offered morning and evening) about Olmsted’s life and lasting legacy.

Cotton, who served as principal researcher and consulting producer on the PBS documentary Frederick Law Olmsted: Designing America, will speak about Olmsted’s landscape projects and what they meant for our nation, the challenges that he faced, and the ideas, such as the public health benefits of spending time in nature, that he championed. Cotton will also highlight why, 200 years later, Olmsted’s philosophy and designs remain relevant today.

Morning Lecture: 10 a.m.
Evening Lecture: 6 p.m.

Free and open to the public | Limited seating available | Preregistration is required

205.414.3950 | bbgardens.org/olmsted

Hosted by the Blue Skies Green Spaces Collaborative (The Birmingham Zoo, Freshwater Land Trust, Friends of Birmingham Botanical Gardens, Railroad Park Foundation, Red Mountain Park, Ruffner Mountain, Southern Environmental Center, and Vulcan Park & Museum) and cosponsors the Alabama Trails Foundation, Birmingham Historical Society, and Birmingham-Southern College

Credit: Portrait of Frederick Law Olmsted by James Notman, Boston; engraving of image later published in Century Magazine (source), public domain, via Wikimedia Commons