June 2013


In this issue
  • Arboretum School Programs Flower this Spring
  • Explore Our Rhododendron Collection Up Close
  • Save-the-Date! 2013 Members' Plant Giveway
  • June is International Month for Free Tours
  • Take a Class: Plant ID, Fireflies, and Solstice Lore
  • Through a Child's Eye Exhibition Begins June 13
  • Discovery Backpacks Bolster Fun in the Landscape
  • Plant Spotlight on Rhododendron

  • Explore Our Rhododendron Collection Up Close
    Rhododendron Dell

    Ornamental favorites in the heath family, evergreen rhododendrons (Rhododendron spp.) lend understory brilliance in a variety of colors throughout the Arboretum at this time of year. Celebrate their beauty on June 2 from 1:00 to 3:00pm at the next free event in our Collections Up Close series, Rhododendron Ramble. See the plants at Rhododendron Dell in spectacular bloom, enjoy a guided tour, participate in fun science and craft activities for kids, and chat with our knowledgeable staff and volunteers.

    Save-the-Date! 2013 Members' Plant Giveway
    Members' Plant Giveaway

    Arboretum members, mark your calendars for the 2013 Plant Giveaway: Saturday, September 21 at the Arboretum. The event offers members the opportunity to select a number of free plants based on membership level, as part of the Arboretum's mission to promote and exchange exceptional trees, shrubs, and vines for New England gardens. Staff experts will help you with your selections and offer advice on planting and care, and the event will conclude with a free drawing for some exceptional specimens from our nurseries.

    June is International Month for Free Tours
    International Tours

    The Arboretum's plants were collected from around the world, and represent a global resource for conservation and research. The rich diversity of our living collection is celebrated in June with free tours in ten languages. A fresh way to explore the landscape, International Month also presents a great opportunity for non-English speakers and foreign language students to learn more about the Arboretum. Hear engaging stories about our landscape, our mission, and our outreach in the community while enjoying plant highlights of late spring.

    Take a Class: Plant ID, Fireflies, and Solstice Lore

    Branch out at the Arboretum this summer and learn something new about the natural world. Join our plant records manager, Kyle Port, on June 1 to identify the 25 most common trees in Boston. On June 5, learn how to converse with fireflies on an evening walk and talk with Tufts University Professor Sara Lewis. Horticultural Technologist Jen Kettell introduces exceptional woody vines for New England gardens on June 11. Turn your attention to the world of fungi at the Arboretum on June 29 with Susan Goldhor and Joel Kershner. And for a unique and enthralling journey through the Arboretum, join storyteller Diane Edgecomb and Celtic harpist Margot Chamberlain on Friday, June 21 or Saturday, June 22 for a summer solstice evening of stories and songs shared "In the Groves."

    Through a Child's Eye Exhibition Begins June 13
    Child's Eyes

    Gain an illustrative perspective on the Arnold Arboretum's partnership for science education with the Boston Teachers Union School. Through a Child's Eye, on exhibit in the Hunnewell Building Lecture Hall beginning June 13, shares observational drawings created by students from Kindergarten through the fifth grade as part of their science explorations with Arboretum educators. Works on display represent pages from the children's science notebooks, documenting their experiments with plants and animals. Join the artists and their teachers for an opening reception on Tuesday, June 18 from 5:30 to 7:30pm.

    Discovery Backpacks Bolster Fun in the Landscape
    Discovery Backpacks

    For family fun in our landscape, join the Explorer's Club to create your own adventure. Our Discovery Packs feature games and other outdoor activities that draw kids closer to plants and nature. Living Museum or Science Lab backpacks are suitable for families with kids over the age of three, and can be borrowed free of charge from the Visitor Center in the Hunnewell Building. Each pack contains multiple activities, suitable to engage your youngsters over multiple visits.

    Plant Spotlight on Rhododendron

    Rhododendron Dell at the foot of Hemlock Hill is a contemplative landscape showcasing our core collection of hybrid and evergreen rhododendrons. Established in the 1880s, the collection was renovated in 1990 through the generosity of the Linda J. Davison Memorial Trust. Today, Rhododendron Dell includes 280 plants, 103 of which are cultivars selected for outstanding characteristics like flower color and fragrance, truss (domed flower mass) size, foliage, and hardiness. Learn more at our Collections Up Close event on June 2, and check out our June family activity to find a hidden letterbox in our landscape.

    All images from the Arnold Arboretum Archives except firefly image courtesy of www.ForestWander.com.

    Arboretum School Programs Flower this Spring
    Head Start

    This spring the Arboretum welcomes hundreds of science students from pre-school through primary grades with new programs, an enhanced partnership for in-class instruction at a neighborhood elementary school, and six additional volunteer guides. Beginning in April, young explorers discover plants and learn about nature through five age-appropriate field study programs designed for hands-on learning. Also this spring, the Arboretum's partnership for in-class science instruction with the Boston Teachers Union (BTU) School in Jamaica Plain has been expanded to reach all grade levels of the lower school as well as the eighth grade. Science Specialist Ana Maria Caballero is also visiting classrooms of a pre-school partner, ABCD South Side Head Start, to lead activities focused on plants that include observation, drawing, collage, and painting.

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