Special Events

There are currently no special events scheduled for the fall 2016 semester.  Below is a list of past events.

Special Presentation

"The Garden at Night"

Alan Petravich

Research Specialist, Longwood Gardens

November 6, 2015





When the sun sets a whole different cast of characters arise to fill the night garden with activity.  The bright reds, yellows, and oranges of the day, fade away, and whites rule the night.  Some flowers release their intoxicating fragrances only at after the sun sets, to attract creatures of the night, such as bats and moths.  Sometimes the shape of the flower will indicate which type of pollinator it is attracting.  Your eyes will adapt to low light levels, and there are some tricks you can use to see better at night.   Come and explore the fascinating world of the night garden.  Lean some wonderful plants that would be ideal for your own night garden, and some amazing interactions between plants and animals.

A short planetarium presentation will follow Mr. Petravich's lecture.



About the Speaker

Alan Petravich grew up on a dairy farm in Pine Grove, PA. Both his BS in Biology and Master’s in Horticulture are from Penn State. His thesis work dealt with height control of herbaceous perennials using paclobutrazol and DIF. Other projects in graduate school included studies with fiber pots, which were impregnated with Spinout, to improve root structure. After receiving his undergraduate degree he headed to sunny California and spent several months working at Disneyland as an attraction host on the Undersea Voyage. After graduate school, and before coming to Longwood, Alan was a grower for Trail Gardens in Pottsville, PA. At Trail Gardens he grew annuals, perennials and Poinsettias. He has been at Longwood for 16 years where he trials a variety of plants from around the world for displays both indoors and outdoors. He is constantly amazed by the variety of plants that pass through his greenhouses. He also conducts breeding work on Clivia and Cannas. In the tissue culture lab, his efforts include virus elimination procedures on Chrysanthemums and Cannas in testubes. From this work, he maintains a bank of clean mum stock for Longwood’s Chrysanthemum displays. Alan also teaches plant propagation classes for the continuing education program at Longwood and has led Moonlight Magic walk in the gardens. Alan is president of the North American Clivia Society.


This event is free. Seating is first-come, first-served.  The doors will be closed once all seats are filled. While children are never excluded from our events, this presentation is aimed at an adult audience and may not hold the interest of young visitors.

For information as to the location of the planetarium and parking directions, please see our main public planetarium page.