In partnership with the Massachusetts Horticultural Society, The New England Unit of the Herb Society of America celebrates the opening and dedication of its Teaching Herb Garden at Elm Bank Horticultural Center, 900 Washington Street, Wellesley, Massachusetts on August 23, 2005 from 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM. The public is invited to attend and learn about this special new garden resource for the greater Boston area. Guided tours will be offered. Refreshments will be served. There is no admission fee and parking is free.

The motto of The Herb Society is "Herbs For use and For delight." The purpose of the Teaching Herb Garden is to provide information for people of all ages on the "use and delights" of herbs in a setting which is visually entertaining and accessible.

The Teaching Garden was designed by Marie Stella Byrnes, a noted landscape designer and garden historian. Begun in 2000, the construction phase of the garden was completed in 2004.

The focal point of the garden is a Ginkgo tree surrounded by a circular bench. Herb beds radiate from the center  and include themes of  fragrance, dye, culinary, friendship, Native American, medicinal, edible plants and flowers, and a Colonial theme garden. Along the west side, a rectangular bed is planted with sweet violets and groundcover plants. On the east side of the garden is a bed which features multiple varieties of Oregano, the "Herb of the Year" for 2005. The newest bed is the Ecumenical Garden, featuring plants that have a religious or symbolic importance in the five major religions, Buddhism, Hinduism, Judaism, Christianity and Islam. The formal garden is enclosed by hedging on three sides. Along the northern edge, a thirty-five foot arbor, made of native cherry, crafted with mortise and tenon joinery, shades the main entrance to the garden. It is flanked by a thirty-foot perennial bed on one side and a bed of roses on the other.

The Herb Society of America, founded in Boston in 1933, is a national organization with chapters throughout the country. Since its beginning, members of The New England Unit have planned and maintained many herb gardens in Massachusetts. These include the Founders' Herb Garden in Wenham (honoring the founders of The Herb Society), The Herb Garden at the Harvard Botanical Garden in Cambridge, The Charles River Workshop for Retarded Citizens in Needham, The Case Estates Herb Garden (Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University) in Weston, The Quincy Homestead, and a public herb garden in Olmsted's Franklin Park.

For further information, please visit The New England Unit's website,