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Submit to Public Garden

Public Garden magazine welcomes and encourages suggestions and submissions for editorial content that futhers our vision of making public gardens indispensable! 

The magazine consists of three main editorial sections, providing unique, high-quality content related to all aspects public garden industry. 


Content suggestions are accepted on an ongoing, rolling basis. Ideally content suggestions should be made at least six months ahead of publication month. If you would like your submission be considered for a specific issue, please clearly specify your preferred publication month upon editorial submission.
Submissions are considered at quarterly Editorial Advistory Group meetings. Upon acceptance you will be contacted with the submission deadline for the article type (see below) and the issue in which it is considered for publication.

Author Feedback


Backbones (500-700 words) are the main articles that make up a large portion of Public Garden editorial content. Some recur in each issue, others on a bi-annual or annual basis, depending on content received.

  • Digging Deep: Case StudiesThis bi-annual feature spotlights recent research related to Public Horticulture, published in the form of a case study. Submissions should contain an introduction, methodology, outcome, and implications/lessons learned/analysis.
  • Horticultural How-To’sFocus on a professional, skilled horticultural project at a public garden. For example: fabrication of large forms used to guide pruning of historic hedges, construction of winter cover structures for tender plants, installation and maintenance of mosaiculture forms, pruning and cutbacks on tender perennials, etc. Submissions should include a detailed description of the project or event, why it is important or impactful to other gardens, and photos.
  • Small Garden, Big ImpactThe essence of this recurring article is to spotlight the\ extraordinary within the ordinary, and share fresh perspectives or lessons learned when making the most of limited resources in a small garden. The garden may be a garden inside a larger garden, a garden in a small community, or a small garden that is open to members and the public.
  • Learning in the Garden Share with us your garden-related curriculum ideas for youth and adult educational programming that can be easily used and adapted by other horticulture educators. Submissions should include a curriculum, plan or syllabus along with photos and examples.
  • Pushing The BoundariesThese are thought-provoking articles covering topics that challenge the status quo and push boundaries in the public gardening community. Sample topics include urban futurists, how knowledge from other industries can help gardens, or how to engage garden visitors within a diverse and ever-changing society.
  • Global View - Take a look at our industry from a global perspective. This section profiles an international garden or collaboration, taking an in-depth look at an industry topic in other parts of the world. Submissions should be from a fact-based point of view and include references, sources, and photographs.
  • Multi-disciplinary/Multi-industry - This section showcases disciplines and industries outside of, but related to, the field of public horticulture. It highlights a project or program relevant to public gardens or one on which a public garden collaborated.

Focal Points 

Feature articles generally range from 800 to 1,500 words. If you have an idea, please submit a query letter of one page (maximum), telling us how you would approach your topic, whom you would interview (if applicable) and what makes the topic a good fit for Public Garden. Upon submission approval, you will be contacted with a requested timeline for submitting full article and accompanying photographs. Focal Point features are high profile, either because of their national or international significance or because they push the boundaries of main articles and issue themes.

Perennial Selections

Recurring segments (500 words or less) in Public Garden, generally no more than one page and containing a high proportion of imagery. Submissions must include high-res photography or pictorial.

  • Garden Professional SpotlightThis segment offers a brief interview with an industry professional, such as an executive director, gardener, curator, marketer or volunteer. Nominate someone from your garden or circle of friends that we should feature. Submissions must include a high-res photo or pictorial. 
  • How Does Your Garden Grow? - Impart your knowledge or nominate a garden team member to impart their own! These short, informative articles (max 400 words) focus on non-horticultural departments, such as human resources, fundraising, marketing, volunteers, maintenance, information management, and more. 
  • Photosynthesis Submit an impactful or inspirational 300 dpi (minimum) photo at least 8.5”x11”, along with a max 200 word description. It could be a historic image, a before and after shot, a unique or interesting spot in your garden, or an image that tells a story…be creative!
  • Garden Art ExhibitsThis section (max 400 words) features an amazing garden exhibit from an American Public Gardens Association member garden, large or small. Just be sure to tell us what impact the exhibit had on your community. Must include high res photography of the exhibit and the visitors who experienced it. 
  • Program Spotlight - focused on the Association's signature programs, prepared by the Association staff.

Contact Managing Editor Dorothea Coleman (


Statements of fact and opinion in the articles in Public Garden are those of the respective authors and contributors and not of the editors or sponsors of Public Garden. No representation, express or implied, is made of the accuracy of the material in this magazine and neither Public Garden nor American Public Gardens Association can accept any legal responsibility or liability for any errors or omissions that may be made.