The Brooklyn Botanic Garden can seem as if it's never crowded. If you avoid the cherry blossoms and the roses blooming - prime visitation times - this urban oasis is as serene as a private garden inhabited only by locals and intrepid tourists willing to travel "all the way to Brooklyn". Each season brings new wonders and there's always more to explore. Summer is lush, autumn is vivid and Spring has it's obvious beauty. But for me, the dead of winter, branches bare against a gray sky, snow covering the cherry esplanade, has a vastly more satisfying, uncommon beauty. Chilled to the bone, you can seek dry warmth in the desert garden or the damp pleasures of the jungle habitat at the Steinhardt Conservatory.