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The Botanic Garden of Smith College spans 127 acres and includes the 12,000 square foot Lyman Conservatory, Church Gallery, arboretum and many outdoor gardens. The garden was founded by Smith College’s first president, Laurenus Clarke Seelye, so that the entire campus could be of scientific, as well as aesthetic, value. Today, it continues to meet those goals. 

Our Mission

The Botanic Garden of Smith College fosters environmental and social justice through teaching and learning about plants, people and place.

We do this by:

  • Curating plant collections that share stories about plant and human diversity.  
  • Training students to be informed thought leaders and change agents.
  • Helping teachers develop integrative, learner-centered experiences. 
  • Welcoming visitors to explore, learn and contribute their knowledge.
  • Cultivating spaces and landscapes that stimulate thought, creativity, collaboration and well-being.
Student Learning

Our Strategic Plan

We ensure that our ongoing work benefits the Smith College community and beyond.

We strive to:

  • Offer student opportunities in all of our initiatives.
  • Make the garden accessible to everyone.
  • Invest in internships, professional development and staff mentorship.
  • Offer spaces that foster discovery and exploration.

For a copy of our 2019-2024 Strategic Plan, please contact

Our Impact

The Botanic Garden of Smith College has a global reach, which helps make our work more meaningful. For example, through an international seed-exchange program, we help botanic gardens across the world grow.

Each year, we reflect on the work we’ve done to gauge our impact, assess our work and ensure that we continue to work toward our mission. Stay tuned for our 2022-23 Impact Report.

Lyman Archival Image

Our Roots

The history of the Botanic Garden of Smith College dates back over 125 years, and is rooted in the formation of the campus itself. Learn more about the role of the botanic garden within the campus, for the students, and academic research throughout the years. 

Dive into our history.

Our Friends of the Botanic Garden Leadership Council

The Friends of the Botanic Garden Leadership Council amplifies the impact of the botanic garden through service, advocacy, networking and philanthropy, and serves as a thought partner for the botanic garden director. Learn more.

Our Staff

Dan Babineau, Greenhouse Horticulturist
John Berryhill, Interim Director
Lily Carone, Greenhouse Horticulturist
Elaine Chittenden, Manager of Living Collections
Dave Dion, Gardener and Assistant Curator
Benjamin Green, Chief Arborist
Jimmy Grogan, Conservatory Curator

Gaby Immerman, Experiential Learning Specialist
Sarah Loomis, Manager of Education
Sheri Lyn Peabody, Business Operations Coordinator
Andrew Rebelo, Gardener and Assistant Arborist
Nathan Saxe, Chief Gardener
Julie Thomson, Communications Manager