HANSON PARK CONSERVANCY

Township of Cranford

Hanson Park Events

The Cranford Community Center is located at 220 Walnut Ave. in Cranford, NJ. 


The program is free and open to the public. 


No registration is required, but seating is available on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Josephine: The Empress Gardened 

This program is sponsored by the Hanson Park Conservancy.

Lesley Parness is the retired Superintendent of Horticultural Education at New Jersey's Morris County Park Commission where she oversaw programming at The Frelinghuysen Arboretum, Willowwood Arboretum and Bamboo Brook Outdoor Education Center.  She is a member of the Herb Society of America, The Council on Horticultural and Botanical Literature, and Garden State Gardens, a consortium of New Jersey's public gardens of which she is a Founding Member. 

Please join the Hanson Park Conservancy as we welcome Garden Historian Lesley Parness for a very special presentation, “Josephine—The Empress Gardened.”  


Tuesday, January 22 at 7:00 PM

Cranford Community Center, 220 Walnut Ave  


Ms. Parness will discuss how French Empress Josephine’s fine taste informed 18th and 19th century style, from couture fashion to interior design. Likewise, she was influenced by her Caribbean heritage, her narrow escape from the guillotine, and her legendary love for flowers. 


When divorced from her husband, Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte, this powerful style-maker and lifelong fashionista focused her energies on her estate, Malmaison. There, Josephine’s passion for plants grew and bloomed.  Her legendary love of roses stopped a war, cost a fortune, set explorers to sail, and started a floral industry that endures today.