American Lotus Delta Tour

The boat is full!
American Lotus Delta Tour 

Saturday, June 17, 2017 
9am – 11ish with catered box lunch
MBG Members $50, NonMem $65

MBG has chartered the Osprey tour boat for a morning trip into the Mobile Delta during the peak bloom season for Lotus. This trip will be an opportunity for botanical artists, photographers, Delta enthusiasts and anyone just interested in taking a closer look at these beatiful flowers of the Delta. Limited seating, so don’t delay signing up for this great trip! Trip includes boat transportation, Guides, boxed lunch, and beverages (bottled water / sodas).

Crazy for the Red White and Blue!
A Six-Week Course: WEDNESDAYS 10am – 1pm from May 24 – June 28

MBG Members: $125
Nonmembers: $150

Register Online

A botanical art studio class designed for the student to create, during the six week
class, a series of three individual botanical flower drawings/paintings. Each work will
be inspired by a red, a white and a blue flower. And each student will have the
opportunity to work in the medium of their choice. From graphite, colored pencil,
gauache, watercolor, including English-dry brush to pen and colored inks. The resulting works will form the basis of an informal exhibition and a reception at the Mobile Botanical Gardens to celebrate 4th of July.

This is a class ideally suited for the beginning, intermediate and advanced
student. For the beginner it is an opportunity to discover the therapeutic and aesthetic
pleasures of drawing and painting from nature. And for the intermediate and advanced
student an occasion to further advance their individual drawing and painting techniques across a palette of challenging colors.

For questions or concerns regarding the materials list do please speak with
Derek Norman (

About our Instructor –

Derek Norman and his wife, Ursel, are members of MBG and they are new to our Gulf Coast community, having moved here from Chicago. Derek was born, bred and educated in England before he moved to the States. His graphic works, paintings, drawings and botanical works have been exhibited in Europe and America. He has won Gold and Silver Gilt Medals at the Royal Horticultural Society in London and he is represented in many private and permanent collections including the Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation, Pittsburgh, the Library of Congress, the British Museum and the Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s Florilegium Society.

One Enchanted Evening

Thursday, April 6th, 7PM

Join us for a night of botanical delights and music…
Honorary Event Chairman, Ann Bedsole  –  Event Chairman, Brenda Huddle
Georgia Roussos Catering  –  Enen Yu accompanied by strings and piano ensemble

4/13/2017: What a wonderful night we had! We couldn’t have asked for a more beautiful or enchanting evening. Special thanks again to all of our sponsors for the evening and the hard work of the One Enchanted Committee and MBG staff. Look for pictures of the event to be posted over the next couple of weeks.

Learn more about this fundraiser and see how the night turned out…

Gallery of Gardens

*Gallery of Gardens was a great success! Thanks to all of the amazing volunteers that made it happen!*

Friday & Saturday, May 19-20
10am – 4pm daily
$30/ticket day of

Explore nine charming private gardens (five courtyards, two small gardens, and two large gardens) in Mobile’s Historic Downtown Districts and discover new ideas for your own! Gardens in DeTonti Square, Oakleigh Garden District and Church Street East, all designed and maintained by their owners, will be on display this year. Local artists will be sketching and painting during the tour and Mobile County Master Gardeners will be available with plant lists to tell you what is growing in each garden. You may begin at any of the nine gardens on tour.


Exciting Lectures in 2017!

In addition to creating and sharing their Bloomin’ Wild series, Derek and Fred have been working to create an interesting array of speakers for MBG in 2017. Dates and details will be posted once set.

Botany for Botanical Artists – Registration is Closed
Friday, February 24th & March 3rd, 10 a.m. – noon
A class consisting of two sessions/lectures, each of two hours.
Instructor: Fred Nation
Designed for botanical art students who would appreciate a better understanding of the principles of basic botany from which they draw inspiration (and for anyone who might be interested). While touching on the subjects of morphology and taxonomy the essential focus would be on the botany of flowers and leaves. Highlighting the diagnostic characteristics that are so important to good accurate botanical drawing and documentation, and also for the identification of plants.
Members $40 / NonMem $50

“Landscape Design”, Terry Plauché – Landscape Architect & Designer – Registration is Closed
Friday, March 10th, 2-4:00
Terry Plauché, Landscape Architect, will be presenting from 2-4pm. Terry is well known for his commercial and residential designs and he has long been a friend of MBG.
$10 NonMem, Free Members

“Invasive Exotics”, Fred Nation – Botanist & Author – Registration is Closed
Friday, April 28th, 2-4:00
Fred Nation is a field botanist, environmental consultant, free-lance photographer and writer. Fred teaches various seminars on habitats and ecosystems for Weeks Bay Reserve and conducts workshops on invasive exotic plant controls and plant identification for the USDA Forest Service, The Cooperative Extension System, and Weeks Bay Reserve. He has identified and nominated 25 Alabama State Champion Trees.
$10 NonMem, Free Members

“Paleobotanical Discoveries in Alabama”, Dr. Brian Axsmith – Head of Botany, USA
Friday, May 12th, 2-3:30
$10 NonMem, Free Members

Dr. Axsmith states, “My interest in fossil plants (Paleobotany) is driven by my belief that many of the important questions in vascular plant evolution require paleobotanical answers. My research focus at this time involves fossil plants from the Pliocene (~ 3 million years ago) Citronelle Formation in Mobile and Baldwin counties, Alabama.  Because the Pliocene record in North America is poor and this was a time of extreme global warmth, the local fossils are particularly significant.”
Register through our Online Catalog

“Wildlife of the Longleaf Pine Forest”, Roger Clay – Alabama Dept. of Conservation
Dates TBA

Friday Afternoons (2pm -4pm) in the Gardens weekly
Enjoy an informal afternoon of drawing,taking inspiration from the Gardens’ setting.
An open studio with advice and encouragement offered by Derek Norman.
Please bring your own drawing supplies. Come when you can.

FREE to Members
Non-members will pay admission of $5 to the Gardens

Derek Norman was born, bred and educated (mostly by experience) in England (BFA) and America as an exchange student (great experience).

Since arriving on these shores he has learnt to speak American and drive on the wrong side of the road.
With a fine art background and following a career in advertising, marketing and communications Derek Norman found an avocation in drawing and painting the native flora of the Midwest. Finally, avocation became vocation.

A longtime designer, creative director, television producer, educator, teacher, lecturer and faculty adviser at Columbia College, Chicago and at the School of the Chicago Botanic Garden, Chicago, Illinois. Also, founder and former Principal of the Midwest Center for Botanical Documentation.

Co-author (with Ursel Norman), and designer/illustrator of six cookbooks (William Morrow, New York & Harper/ Collins, London). And various newspaper columns – Look & Cook (Pioneer Press, Chicago),
Greenfingers (Chicago Tribune), Woodland Wildflowers, Plants at a Glance and Prairie Plants (Pioneer Press, Chicago).

A former elected member of the London Creative Circle and the Royal Society of Artists and Designers, London. He is the recipient of many design and professional awards. His graphic works, paintings, drawings and botanical drawings have been exhibited in Europe and America. He has won Gold and Silver Gilt Medals at the Royal Horticultural Society in London and he is represented in many private and permanent collections including the Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation, Pittsburgh, the Library of Congress, the British Museum and the Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s Florilegium Society.

Derek Norman together with his wife Ursel, nowadays, are happy to reside in Olde Towne Daphne, Alabama.