New Jersey's 16th Legislative District

Senator Kip Bateman

Senator Kip Bateman

Bateman Proclaims First Ever ‘NJ Public Gardens & Arboretum Day’ at National Historic Landmark

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Elected Officials, Industry Leaders, Advocates Gather in Princeton to Celebrate Bateman Resolution Establishing “New Jersey Public Gardens & Arboretum Day”

On May 11, Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman (R-Mercer, Somerset, Middlesex, Hunterdon) proclaimed the first annual “New Jersey Public Gardens and Arboretum Day” before a large crowd at Morven Museum and Garden in Princeton, New Jersey.

On Monday, May 11, Sen. Kip Bateman proclaimed ‘New Jersey Public Gardens and Arboretum Day’ before a large crowd at Morven Museum and Garden in Princeton, New Jersey. Pictured: Bob Heitzman, President NJ Nursery & Landscape Association; Senator Bateman; and Jeannie Geremia, VP Garden Club of NJ. (

“As a longtime advocate of environmental protection and historical preservation, I have dedicated much of my time in public service to ensuring our children and grandchildren can continue to call New Jersey the ‘Garden State,’” Senator Bateman said. “This would not be possible without the dedicated conservationists, researchers and educators at public gardens like Morven Museum and Garden. It is our hope that recognizing New Jersey Public Gardens and Arboretum Day will encourage our residents to visit these treasured institutions, and experience firsthand the lasting positive impact they have had on our state.”

Bateman has taken a leadership role on important environmental concerns impacting New Jersey’s public gardens, including water conservation, open space and energy issues.

The joint legislative resolution, which establishes the first Friday in June of Each year as “New Jersey Public Gardens and Arboretum Day,” was championed in the Assembly by Senator Bateman’s fellow District 16 legislators, Assemblymen Jack Ciattarelli and Andrew Zwicker.

“I and my colleagues Assemblymen Ciatterelli and Zwicker are pleased to have sponsored this resolution,” Senator Bateman added. “Our many and diverse public gardens and arboreta are repositories of plant-based science, cultural resources and public spaces for education and entertainment as well as the therapeutic benefits found in the embrace of nature. June is the perfect time to start discovering them.”

Senator Bateman was joined at the May 11 celebration of his resolution by Princeton Mayor Liz Lempert, various local officials, as well as a large number of visitors, local residents, industry leaders, members of the Garden State Gardens Consortium; and the dedicated staffers at Morven Museum and Garden, who graciously hosted the event. Representatives from public gardens at from the tip of Sussex County to the bottom of Cape May County were also in attendance.

Today we made history by declaring the FIRST EVER “NJ Public Gardens & Arboretum Day” at a celebration at Morven Museum …

Posted by Kip Bateman on Thursday, May 11, 2017

Morven Museum and Garden is a National Historic Landmark and the home to five past New Jersey Governors from 1945-1981. It was also home to Richard Stockton, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. Its beautiful gardens and grounds feature restored gardens from the 19th and early 20th centuries, including a Colonial Revival Garden and a new Kitchen Garden.

Morven Museum and Garden is one of the many New Jersey public gardens and arboreta which have joined together to form the Garden State Gardens Consortium, a non-profit organization incorporated in 2008. Garden State Gardens works to increase the public’s awareness of and appreciation for the beauty and horticultural, educational, artistic and historic value of New Jersey’s public gardens and arboreta.

New Jersey’s nickname of, “The Garden State” is overshadowed by images of our turnpikes and factories. In fact, the moniker “Garden State” recognized New Jersey’s agricultural production and was given to it at the Philadelphia Centennial of 1876*.  In 1954, the State Legislature passed a bill to have “The Garden State” added to license plates. Agriculture and ornamental horticulture are still important economic sectors, but now, more than a half-century later, the term “Garden State” will also recognize New Jersey’s many beautiful public gardens and arboreta enjoyed by over a million visitors annually.

“Public gardens and arboreta are central to the future of our state, directly influencing the next generations,” said Samantha Richardson, president of the Garden State Gardens Consortium. “Many of our state’s public gardens and arboreta will celebrate the proclamation of New Jersey Public Garden and Arboretum Day with special tours, programs or discounts on Friday, June 2. Recognition from the New Jersey State Senate and Assembly encourages the state’s public gardens to continue providing engaging outdoor, educational experiences, and environmental stewardship models for both New Jersey residents and those who are visitors to our state.”

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