Certificate in Native Plant Studies Program

Adult & Family Classes | Discovery Field Trips | Children's Summer Camps

The Certificate in Native Plant Studies program has as its goal, to raise awareness of the importance of native plants and their value to our environment. Its curriculum consists of core classes, electives, field trips and volunteer service, which together provide a well-rounded education balanced among botany, taxonomy, ecology, conservation and uses of our native Southeastern flora. Classes are held at The Gardens and at other appropriate locations

Program events will be offered throughout the year. Students may begin their earning their certificate at any time, with any course. Certificates will be awarded to those who fulfill requirements within three years, however – anyone is welcome to register for any of the classes.


Click here for a PDF of brochure.

Click here to view some of the past class offerings in the program.

For more information about registration:

Contact 205.414.3950

For more information about the program:
Contact Kaul Wildflower Garden Curator John Manion at 205.414.3985 or jmanion@bbgardens.org.

Current Students: Volunteer Service Hours Form


Upcoming Classes, Field Trips and Volunteer Opportunities


NOTE: If you are unable to register using one of the Register Online buttons below, the class may be full,

contact Rona Walters at 205.414.3950 or rwalters@bbgardens.org.

Due to high call and email volume you should expect a response within 24-48 hours.



Almond Rock - A Piedmont Granite Dome (field trip)
Trip Leaders: Tom Diggs & John Manion
Saturday, May 16 | 9 - 3 p.m.
Location: Randolph County, AL
$50 Members | $60 Non-Members

Almond Granite Outcrop in Randolph County, AL, one of our state’s most distinctive landscapes, where soil types range from basic to acidic, is inhabited by an array of contrasting unusual plant species – some rare. Situated in the Piedmont physiographic region, this outcrop, which brings to mind the surface of the moon, is home to many fascinating ecotones, due to its geology and hydrology. We will examine a range of diverse habitats ranging in character from xeric to boggy seeps. Participants will see colonies of some very special plants, including one which grows only here and one other location - and even a carnivorous species!


Bibb County Glades & Cahaba Lilies (field trip)
Trip leaders: Tom Diggs, Ph.D. and John Manion
Location: Bibb County
Wednesday, May 27 | 9-4 p.m.
$60 Members | $70 Non-Members

By popular demand, we will again lead this annual foray to one of our favorite locations in the state. Bibb County Glades, known well among in the world of botanists, is called "the botanical lost world,” partly due to eight new species of plants having been discovered there, many of which grow only there! This unique and fascinating landscape contains a number of Alabama endemic plant species and others rare, unusual and particularly adapted to life in a peculiar dolomitic glade. We have timed this trip to include a nearby visit to observe the famed Cahaba lilies, hopefully in flower.


Introduction to Native Plant Conservation (core)
Instructor: Bob Boyd PhD
Location: Birmingham Botanical Gardens
Saturday, August 22 | 8:30-4:30 p.m.
$80 Members | $90 Non-Members

The flora of Alabama is one of the richest in the country, which underscores the importance of conserving our plants and their habitats. This course is a general introduction to plant conservation, focusing particularly on Alabama plants. We will cover a broad set of topics, including rarity ranking systems, invasive species, restoration ecology, conservation ethics, conservation legislation and conservation methods such as safeguarding. Alabama Plant Conservation Alliance projects will be emphasized as examples.


Disclaimer: We appreciate your interest in Birmingham Botanical Gardens' classes for adults and children. Some of our classes may cover the edible, medicinal, cosmetic and aromatic uses of plants. The information presented in our classes, whether delivered by Gardens' staff, volunteers or instructors, is derived from numerous sources which include folklore as well as more authoritative sources. This information is intended solely for educational purposes. We believe this information to be accurate, interesting and useful within an educational context, but any information we may provide about the various uses of plants is not intended to advocate any specific use. Due to the very personal nature of individual chemical tolerances, allergies and other possible negative reactions, you accept full responsibility for any use you may choose to undertake of the plants covered in our classes.