Beyond gift shops, wedding rentals, and one-off plant sales, every garden has unique assets that could be leveraged to achieve the institutional mission and creatively generate revenue for the organization or reduce expenses. Identifying those assets is key. They might be specialty plant knowledge, existing composting operations, “excess” land, or savings from switching to gray water. But not all good ideas work out the way they are envisioned, and sometimes have to be abandoned before being realized. Participants will learn how organizations identified projects that might have seemed crazy at the time, what went right, the challenges, and how the organization adapted to the changing business realities. Participants will realize that their organization has unique assets and be able to identify some of the pitfalls to success for their ideas.


P. Larkin, Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden, Belmont, North Carolina; C. Baker, Chicago Botanic Garden, Glencoe, Illinois; K. Schutz, Desert Botanical Garden, Phoenix, Arizona; D. Edelstein, Native Plant Trust (formerly New England Wild Flower Society), Framingham, Massachusetts