Image of visitors an the Rinard Orchid Greenhouse

In the absence of our Annual in-person Showcase, the Friends of the Rinard Orchid Greenhouse invite you to share our news here.

We are very excited to share the events of the greenhouse. Please see our short video, here:

Words from our College of Science and Humanities Dean, Dr. Maureen McCarthy:

Thank you for taking the time to listen to the news from the Friends of the Rinard Orchid Greenhouse in this online version. The greenhouse staff and volunteers have worked hard this past year and have many exciting things to share with you. We all hope to be back to a more normal world as soon as conditions allow.

As many of us know, nature is an important part of mental and physical wellness. Our guest speaker will share more about this connection in her presentation (link below). In the meantime, I encourage you to learn more about the greenhouse here, and support the variety of nature education programs, learn more about the expansion efforts and visit when you can. Thank you for your support to the greenhouse and to Ball State University.

Guest Program: “Nature by Design: Spatial Affordances Inviting Physical, Social and Emotional Engagement with Natural Environments” by Pam Harwood, AIA, Professor, Department of Architecture, College of Architecture and Planning, Ball State University. Her presentation to be posted here soon!

Other interesting and nature-based examples of Pam’s work is here:

From our Field Station Director, Dr. Tim Carter:

Our Greenhouse expansion news is part of our excitement! We are 90% of the way to our fundraising goal! See more about this wonderful project for our community here:

Our membership chair, Jackie Harris shares Membership highlights here:

Thank you to all of the Friends of the greenhouse who have supported us in this past year! We have 65 contributing members who have supported many new and continuing nature education programs at the greenhouse. The Friends have two major programs annually, the Annual Plant Sale/Fundraiser in April and the Holiday in Bloom program in December. Nearly 500 visitors enjoyed the December program last year, and the plant 2019 sale was a big success. We thank you for your continued support of this great greenhouse and its resources for the community. If you would like more information on how to be a friend, please view our membership brochure

Lastly, we invite you to scroll down to see the various highlights of our information tables, and learn more about each.

Orchids and Rinard Orchid Greenhouse

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Picture of flowers

  • Largest collegiate orchid collection in the United States
  • Species for education, conservation, and research
  • 2,100 orchids and 428 genera
  • Worldwide Collection
  • USDA Rescue Center
  • Specialty collections include the Wheeler-Thanhauser Orchid Collection and Species Bank, and the Betty Kendall Ladyslipper Orchid Collection
  • High-tech facility (2014)
  • Named for alums Dr. Joe and Alice Rinard

Image of Mr. and Mrs. Rinard

Educational Programs and Outreach

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  • Monthly programs for all ages
  • Specialty events include the annual Plant Fundraiser Sale in April, Mid-Summer Night's Dream in July, Tropical Edibles in November, and Holiday in Bloom in December
  • Children's programs and activities
  • Community outreach events such as the ArtsWalk, FanJam, IU Ball Memorial Hospital and more
  • Volunteer opportunities
  • More than 6,000 visitors per year

Plant Sale

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The annual Plant Fundraiser Sale is held on the last Saturday of April. Due to COVID-19, the 2020 event has been cancelled/postponed until further notice. Friends of the Rinard Orchid Greenhouse receive a 10% discount on all plant sale items.

Ball State Student Enrichment

Image of artist sketching at the Rinard Orchid GreenhouseImage of printed flyerPicture of slide of Rinard Orchid Greenhouse

Immersive learning classes include:

  • Art/Accessibility Design - Professor Shantanu ADS 411, Fall 2019
  • Sustainability 400 - Prof. Martha Hunt, SUST 400, Fall 2019
  • Marketing - Advanced Immersive Prpojects 498 - Prof. Eric Harvey, Spring 2020

Internships include:

  • Social media management


  • School of Art classes in drawing, painting, photography, and watercolor
  • School of Architecture classes in sketching
  • Art students at Burris

Cultural Enrichment

Image of people at the Rinard Orchid GreenhouseImage of plant on a pedestal at the Rinard Orchid Greenhouse

  • Part of Ball State's Cultural Coordinator along with the Marilyn K. Glick Center for Glass, the Charles W. Brown Planetarium, the David Owsley Museum of Art, Sursa Hall, and Emens Auditorium
  • Mindful Meditation in the greenhouse offered by the Ball State Counseling Center
  • Two Ball State student art shows every year
  • Sculptures and exhibits
  • Arts in Bloom at the David Owsley Museum of Art

Planned Greenhouse Expansion

Image of computer-rendered expansion of the Rinard Orchid Greenhouse

  • Environmental Education Center for STEM education, natural history, and outreach
  • K-12 programs
  • Community programs
  • Ball State Field Station nature education programs
  • Quality of place for Muncie and region

To stay informed, please complete a pledge card. We encourage you to contribute to the project by visiting and selecting the Rinard Orchid Greenhouse, Fund #919.

To see more about this wonderful project for our community, visit our Vimeo page.

Become a Friend

Image of plants at the Rinard Orchid GreenhouseImage of adults and children at the Rinard Orchid Greenhouse

  • Electronic newsletter six times a year
  • Annual Friends Showcase event
  • 10% discount on all plant sale items
  • Friends-exclusive pre-sale event
  • View our membership brochure

The Mid-America Orchid Congress

Banner for the Mid-America Orchid Congress

The Mid-America Orchid Congress is a huge regional orchid show with judging from the American Orchid Society. It will be held on March 19 through 21 at the Ball State Alumni Center in 2021. To learn more, visit their website.

Contact Us

For questions or to learn more about ROGH, please contact Cheryl LeBlanc, Orchid Collection Curator.