Kelly D. Norris

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Des Moines, Iowa

Kelly Norris is a 20-something rising-star horticulturist and author, hailed in recent news as an "undownable plantsman," "a gardening evangelist," and "the unofficial Gen Y gardening spokesman."

w: http://www.kellydnorris.com

w: http://dmbotanicalgarden.com

e: view email gardens@kellydnorris.com

Additional Information

A list of some of Kelly's popular lectures


Kelly D. Norris is a 20-something, award-winning author and plantsman from Iowa and the first horticulture manager at the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden, a newly revitalized 14-acre public garden in Des Moines, Iowa.  He’s popularly known for his book A Guide to Bearded Irises: Cultivating the Rainbow for Beginners and Enthusiasts from Timber Press, which won the 2013 American Horticultural Society Book Award.  His next book—Plants with Style—is due out in December 2015.  As a speaker, he has garnered acclaim for his high-energy, zealous presentations on the national stage, leading many to call him one of the rising stars of American horticulture.  Kelly’s career began at age 15 when he talked his parents into buying a nursery (Rainbow Iris Farm), and since then he’s become one of the few gurus on marketing horticulture to emerging demographics.

At the Botanical Garden, Kelly directs and manages a team of horticultural professionals in all aspects of design, curation, programming, and garden management, after serving as the principal horticulture consultant to the $18 million renovation project completed in 2014.   He is also the editorial director for the organization’s award-winning member magazine Bloom and is the artistic director of the popular Spring Garden Festival, a four-day pop-up retail plant sale and garden show.


Available to speak anywhere.

Photo Gallery


Audience Reviews

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4th Annual, NYC-Area Intern Field Day

Charles M. Yurgalevitch from NYBG, Bronx, NY - 07/26/2016 09:14:23

Kelly Norris spoke before a group of over 100 interns. He's an excellent and inspiring speaker. He's amazing!

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one of the best speakers around

Mike Kintgen from Colorado - 07/23/2016 14:50:08

Kelly Norris is one of the best speakers of our generation, delivering a clear and concise message about the importance of horticulture in a changing world. few presenters have Kelly's comfort and confidence at the podium.

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Linn County Master Gardener Lecture Series Speaker

Carson Fixmer from Cedar Rapids, IA - 04/20/2015 21:22:52

Kelly's presentation on Horticultural Theater hit a home run with our audience of novice and experienced gardeners alike. He is knowledgeable, engaging and entertaining. We would love to have him back for another creative gardening lecture.

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