Ruth Borun Lecture Series

Longtime Southern California Horticultural Society member Ruth Borun cultivated a highly regarded garden while immersing herself in the people, places and plants of the world of horticulture. In her memory, the Borun family has funded the Ruth Borun Lecture Series to present significant horticulture speakers to fellow and future members of So Cal Hort.

Ruth inherited the gardening gene from her mother and passed it on to Nancy, one of her daughters. They would spend weekends plant hunting: Del Mar for proteas, Carpinteria for orchids, Nuccio's for Camellias and, of course, the Theodore Payne Foundation for California natives. When Ruth could no longer drive to So Cal Hort meetings, Nancy became her chauffeur. Nancy still oversees Ruth's garden and is working on bringing it back to the Chris Rosmini era.

Ruth's collaboration and friendship with landscape designer Christine Rosmini (a SCHS Horticulturist of the Year) lasted for years. They traveled together extensively, visiting gardens and gardeners throughout the world. The result was a garden that was featured in Sunset magazine, in the Los Angeles Times, and in Christopher Lloyd's book, Other People's Gardens (one of only three American gardens in the book).

Photo by John Schoustra

SCHS members are grateful for the memories of Ruth and her garden and thankful that her memory lives on through the Ruth Borun Lecture Series.

Photo courtesy of the Borun Family

Photo by John Whittlesely

2021 Ruth Borun Lecture Series

Jennifer Jewell
Cultivating Place: How a Garden Culture of Care Strengthens Places and Their People

Our inaugural lecture will be live-streamed via Zoom and Facebook on Thursday, February 11 at 7:30 pm.
This inaugural lecture is free to SCHS Members and the general public, but you must register to get the Zoom invitation. Click here to register.

We are thrilled to welcome Jennifer Jewell as our first speaker in the Ruth Borun Lecture Series. Her program will explore the philosophy of her Cultivating Place podcast; that gardens/gardeners are powerful agents and spaces for potentially positive change in our world. They are helping to address challenges as wide-ranging as climate change, habitat loss, cultural polarization, and individual and communal health and being. This is exemplified by the important plant-based work being done by women around the world profiled in the Jennifer’s book The Earth in Her Hands, and the innovative place-based gardens that celebrate western landscapes in Jennifer’s upcoming book, Under Western Skies.

Jennifer Jewell is the host of the national award-winning weekly public radio program and podcast Cultivating Place: Conversations on Natural History and the Human Impulse to Garden. She is the author of The Earth in Her Hands, 75 Extraordinary Women Working in the World of Plants (Timber Press in 2020), and Under Western Skies, Visionary Gardens from the Rockies to the Pacific Coast (due out from Timber Press in April 2021). Her greatest passion is elevating the way we think and talk about gardening, the empowerment of gardeners, and the possibility inherent in the intersection between culture and gardens. 

For questions about this event, please contact

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