Adult Programs

Classes include admission to the Gardens. A late registration fee of $5 will be added per person when registering after Monday Noon (12pm) before following Saturday’s program.

Bonsai Study Group Register Now

Bonsai Study Group 011   Bonsai Study Group 009

Bonsai Study Group
Led by Bonsai Curator Rodney Clemons
9 a.m. to 4 p.m. (lunch 12 noon – 1 p.m.)
Open to visitors; free, after paid garden admission

Rodney Clemons visits Smith-Gilbert Gardens on the 2nd Saturday of each month (some exceptions as noted on the calendar) to oversee, evaluate, care for, and prune the Gardens’ bonsai collection. Along with a small group of well-trained and very experienced volunteers, Rodney provides expert care in all aspects of maintaining the collection.

Visitors are welcome to ask questions and talk with Rodney and the volunteers to learn more about this ancient art.
In addition to the Gardens’ bonsai collection, there are a number of bonsai for sale in the plant sale area.

If you’re interested in learning more about bonsai, please plan a visit on the 2nd Saturday.

(Please note: We request you do not bring your personal bonsai trees to the Gardens.)

December 13, 2014
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Decorating for the Holidays Register Now

Saturday, December 13, 2014 – 10am-Noon


Love the specific fresh smell of evergreens, pine, spruce? Bring a little piece of Smith-Gilbert Gardens indoors. Get creative with a wide range of fresh cut evergreens from the Gardens and create a wreath or piece to take home and enjoy during the Holidays.

Participation fee: $25 SGG Members – $35 Non-member

(includes instruction and supplies).

Registration is required.

Please bring a pair of pruners.


December 13, 2014
10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Beekeeping 101 Register Now

Beekeeping 101

Instructor: Daphney Glass

Beekeeping class

Class participants tending the hives during one of the sessions.

This 7-course program taught over a 9-month period provides a comprehensive approach to beekeeping. Course topics include:  the history of beekeeping, hive construction, care of the hive, and harvesting of honey.  Participants will learn how to identify the most common problems impacting hive health, how to prepare bees for winter months, and the best ways to extract honey.

All aspects of keeping healthy bees will be covered during the course. In addition to the course instruction, participants may construct their own hives and stock with nucs (queen and bees). By next spring you could have your own hive and bees buzzing around your garden – the sure sign of a healthy garden!

Course fee = $225

Garden Members receive a 10% discount

Please note: Additional expenses for protective equipment, hives, frames, and nucs are not included in the course fee.

Estimated expenses:

  • Protective equipment (gloves and hat with netting): $50
  • 8 or 10 frame hive: $265
  • Nucs : $160 each
    A nuc or nucleus to give it its full title consists of 3 or 5 frames of bees, brood, both open and sealed, honey and pollen stores and a laying queen of the current year.
  • Medications: $10
  • First season’s feed: $20

For more information or to register, contact the Garden office at 770-919-0248 or email

Class Schedule


January 10 9 a.m. to 12 noon Defining class goals, expectations; order equipment
History of bees/beekeeping
February 7 9 a.m. to 12 noon Bee biology & behavior, feeding, potential problems
March                 No Class  
April 11 9 a.m. to 12 noon Hive Construction
May 2 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Working hives, protection required
June 6  9 a.m. to 12 noon Extracting honey
August 1 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Working hives, protection required
September 12 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Winterizing the hive

About the instructor:

Encouraged by a friend to take the class at Smith-Gilbert Gardens, Daphney was quickly captivated by the art and science of beekeeping and wanted to learn everything she could.

She is a member of the Metro Atlanta Beekeeping Association and the Cherokee Beekeeping Club. In addition to the training she received under beekeeper Dan Harris, Daphney attended a week-long conference hosted by the Eastern Apicultural Society and then passed the certification test to become a Certified Beekeeper.

She shares this about her connection with this ancient practice, “There are not many things in life that can give you conflicting mixed emotions, fear and excitement, all at the same time quite like the first time you see an open hive and a full frame covered with bees.”

Daphney is now the beekeeper at Smith-Gilbert Gardens and through this course hopes to inspire others to have at least one colony of bees in their own backyard.

January 10, 2015 - September 12, 2015
Course fee $225.00
SGG Member $200.00

*Cancellation Policy: Cancellations 5 or more business days prior to the program start date : refund less a processing fee of $5.  Cancellations 1 to 4 business days prior to the program start date: no refund. Programs canceled by Smith-Gilbert Gardens for any reason are fully refunded.