Special Interest Classes

Special Interest Classes and Travel

Our Special Interest programs give you an opportunity to try your hand at a new hobby.

Learn how to use herbs and plants from the garden to create products for the bath or home, turn a lovely bouquet of flowers into a beautiful arrangement or get back to nature by learning how to become a bird watcher. Whichever program you choose, you are sure to enjoy connecting with nature and sharing your new talents with friends.

For more general information about adult classes, visit the Adult Programs main page. Please contact education@dallasarboretum.org with additional questions.


Registration for Spring and Summer programs is now open.

Deluxe Cuba Gardens & Nature Trip SOLD OUT Click for More

Deluxe Cuba Gardens & Nature Trip

January 15 - 22 SOLD OUT

January 29 – February 5 SOLD OUT

$4,999 (Members only)

Dallas Arboretum & Florida Keys TREE Institute


Members can join us for an unforgettable experience to the once-forbidden island of Cuba. For 13 years, the TREE Institute has been providing humanitarian exchange programs to Cuba. Raul Verdecia, one of Cuba’s leading authorities on plants, will be your guide as you travel throughout the country on the true “People to People” exchange of culture and the environment. Enjoy birding in the Zapata Swamp, Orchid hunting in the Soroa Orchid Garden, traversing the breathtaking scenery of the Vinales National Park, exploring both public and private botanical gardens and taking in the critically acclaimed National Museum of Fine Arts. This and more will be a part of your eight-day/eight-night trip. You will also have a chance to explore on your own and take in some of the Private Paladares that are revolutionizing Cuban cuisine. 


What travelers are saying: “Our trip to Vinales and Havana is among the best we've ever taken… We've not had as cost effective a trip where…everything was first class from the food, the bus, the hotels to your incredibly versatile and knowledgeable guide. What a difference it makes traveling with someone who is 'wired' in so many dimensions with the host country. Our primary interest was the Cuban Botanical world, but the architectural lecture, the museum tours, the visit to the arts district and other extensions from our primary purpose are what made the trip so extra special."

Nick Hurd, Board Member: Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens  

Giving the Gift of Chocolate –Valentine’s Edition Click for More

Giving the Gift of Chocolate –Valentine’s Edition

February 6

9 - 11 a.m.

$45 ($40 for Members)

Steven Pilat, Chef at Art Institute of Dallas

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This Valentine’s Day, melt the heart of someone you love them with a delectable gift from the kitchen. Learn tips and tricks to working with chocolate and then try your hand at some of the recipes. 

Flowers 365 with the Flower Expert J Schwanke Click for More

Flowers 365 with the Flower Expert J Schwanke

February 20

Jay Schwanke, AAF, AIFD, CFC, PFCI, Author & Founder of UBloom.com

Indulge your passion for flowers and watch your creativity bloom! Join award-winning floral design consultant and the foremost flower design expert in the industry, J Schwanke, for a celebration of flowers. Join us in the morning for a live flower demonstration as J shows tips, tricks and techniques for arranging flowers. With a focus on American grown flowers, J will show you how to have fun with flowers. In the afternoon, a select group of participants will have a chance to get personal hands-on instruction from J as you design your own beautiful and fragrant flower crown. Book signing at noon. Space is limited, so register early.


Demonstration: 10 a.m. - 12 p.m.

$50 ($45 for Members)


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Workshop: 1 - 3 p.m.

$140 ($126 for Members)


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Seasonal Birds Click for More

Seasonal Birds

$50 ($45 for Members) each season

Melissa Martin, Trinity River Audubon Center


In these two-part classes, Melissa will introduce you to the birds that call Dallas home in winter and spring. Following the lecture on the first week of class, you will take a leisurely stroll through the Arboretum in search of the many birds that reside in the White Rock Lake area. During the second week of class, you will explore the forest, wetlands and prairie at the Audubon Center. Bring your binoculars (loaners available) and dress for the weather. 


Winter Birds

February 27

9 - 11 a.m. at the Arboretum

March 5

9 - 11 a.m. at TRAC


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Spring Birds

April 2

7 - 9 a.m. at the Arboretum 

April 9

7 - 9 a.m. at TRAC


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Concrete Leaf Casting Click for More

Concrete Leaf Casting

March 12

1 - 3 p.m.

March 26

9 - 11 a.m.

$60 ($54 for Members)

Joanne Durbin, Concrete Leaf Artist

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Using leaves from the garden and a few simple ingredients, you will transform a piece of nature into a beautiful decoration for your garden.

Hip Girl’s Guide to Fermentation Click for More

Hip Girl’s Guide to Fermentation

March 19

Kate Payne, Author & freelance writer


Intro to Lacto – Fermentation 

9 - 11 a.m.

$40 ($36 for Members)


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Learn to turn those cucumbers, carrots, beans and other veggies into delicious probiotic snacks. In this two-hour demonstration class Kate will cover the essentials of brined pickle projects and the science behind why they work and what makes these kinds of pickles good for us.


Pickle Power – Lacto-fermented Pickling Workshop

12:30 - 3:30 p.m.

$80 ($72 for Members)

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Take your preserving skills to the next level in this hands-on fermented pickling workshop. Attendees will make and take home a personalized jar of seasonal cultured veggies. Apply the skills you learn in the class to any vegetable to create delicious probiotic snacks with your harvest throughout the seasons.

Owl Prowl Click for More

Owl Prowl

March 29 

6 - 8 p.m.

$33 ($30 for Members)

Melissa Malone, Trinity River Audubon Center

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Discover the owls that call our area home as you explore owl anatomy, hunting technique and some of their amazing abilities. Then set out on a walk through the Arboretum calling owls and listening for replies. 

Bottle Cutting Click for More

Bottle Cutting

Two Classes - Same Day

May 7 

12 - 2 p.m.

$80 ($72 for Members)

Emily Riggert, Oil & Cotton

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Enjoy turning your glass bottles into functional glassware. Students should bring six cylindrical glass bottles with you, and remove all labels beforehand. Get ready, this technique is addictive!

Day Trips From Dallas – Falster Farm Click for More

Day Trips From Dallas – Falster Farm

May 7

8 a.m. - 6 p.m.

$125 ($113 for Members)

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This summer, grab a friend and join us for a day-long adventure outside the city. Our first trip will include a tour of Falster Farm, a family-owned sustainable farm and cattle ranch. We will enjoy a chef-prepared lunch before heading off to Jersey Girls Milk Company and then a final stop at Stella Bella Winery. Space is limited.

Organic Indigo – Natural Dye Click for More

Organic Indigo – Natural Dye

May 14

12 - 3 p.m.

$80 ($72 for Members)

Sarah Westrup, Oil and Cotton


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Discover the beautiful blues that you can create using natural organic indigo on cotton. Create free formed resist patterns by clamping and tying & dyeing techniques and learn how to mix a clay resist paste that will prevent indigo dye from penetrating designed areas. 

Tillandsia Frames Click for More

Tillandsia Frames

May 21

9 - 11 a.m.

$90 ($81 for Members)

Cynthia Koogler, Flower Child Plants

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Create a one of a kind work of art using Tillandsia plants artfully displayed in a frame that you can hang just about anywhere.

Insect Hotel Click for More

Insect Hotel

June 4, 9-11 am
$45 ($40 for Members)

Dustin Miller, Dallas Arboretum Children’s Program Manager

As we tidy our lawns, we take away habitats for little critters in our landscape. Create a one-of-a-kind work of art to beautify your backyard using natural materials from the garden artfully arranged to attract the right insects to your yard.

Vertical Succulent Garden Click for More

Vertical Succulent Garden

June 18, 9-11am
​$110 ($99 for Members)

Steven Chamblee, Chandor Gardens

In this hands-on class, learn to design and construct a vertical, wall-hanging garden frame and fill it with beautiful succulent plants. You will go home with a one-of-a-kind work of living art.