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The Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University is a museum of trees teaching the world about plants.

  • Ginkgo 1115-89*D
  • Mountain witch alder 694-34*A
  • Chinese olive maple 409-79*A
  • Smooth witherod 431-2002*A
  • Persimmon 801-87*B
  • Norway spruce 517-28*A
  • Contorted European beech 14599*A
  • Ginkgo biloba 1115-89*D by Ned Friedman
    Ginkgo 1115-89*D
  • Fothergilla major 694-34*A by Jon Hetman
    Mountain witch alder 694-34*A
  • Acer olivaceum 409-79*A by Ned Friedman
    Chinese olive maple 409-79*A
  • Viburnum nudum 'Winterthur' 431-2002*A by Ned Friedman
    Smooth witherod 431-2002*A
  • Diospyros virginiana 801-87*B by Jon Hetman
    Persimmon 801-87*B
  • Norway Spruce Picea abies
    Norway spruce 517-28*A
  • Fagus sylvatica 'tortuosa' 14599*A by Ned Friedman
    Contorted European beech 14599*A

Featured Event

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expeditions : the arboretum’s new mobile app, leaf peeping, watch with us!, the art of wood vi, the arboretum on google arts and culture,

  • Expeditions : the Arboretum’s new mobile app

    Explore stories about botany, horticulture, conservation, and Arboretum history through photos, text, and audio segments

    Amy Heuer and Metasequoia
  • Leaf Peeping

    Discover the variety of leaf shapes and colors as you explore the landscape and the latest Wonder Spot located at the Washington St Gate and Poplar St Gate. Bring a journal and your curiosity. #WonderSpots #GetOutside #OutdoorLearning

    fall ginkgo biloba leaves
  • Watch With Us!

    Learn about plants and wildlife from Arboretum specialists

    Silk moth
  • The Art of Wood VI

    Our online exhibition of turned wood objects and art pieces created by Massachusetts South Shore Woodturners

    Wooden bowls, one large, 3 small with finals arranged with three balls and a tree branch
  • The Arboretum on Google Arts and Culture

    The Arboretum has partnered with the Google Arts & Culture, an immersive online learning platform, to bring the stories of our plants to life

    Collage of historic images from plant expeditions

Today's Virtual Walks

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Plants & Collections

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Illustration of paperbark maple by Charles Faxon
12488*B Map it ↗

Paperbark Maple

Scientific Name
Acer griseum

A remarkable and rare species native to central China, this maple is most known for its striking copper-colored papery bark. Plant collector Ernest Henry Wilson introduced it to North America in 1907. The Arboretum is home to some of the oldest paperbark maples outside of China.

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Paperbark maple
Illustration of Franklinia alatamaha by William Bartram
2428-3*A Map it ↗

Franklin Tree

Scientific Name
Franklinia alatamaha

A member of the tea family (Theaceae), Franklin tree sports a showy white flower and striking fall foliage. John Bartram, an early American botanist, recorded his encounter with the elusive plant while exploring southeastern Georgia with his son William in 1765. William later collected seed and propagated the plant, which became extinct in the wild shortly thereafter.

View plant bio
Franklinia alatamaha 2428-3*B by Jon Hetman

We are educators, students, plantswomen, caretakers, artists, volunteers, professors, and everyone in between.

  • Community Spotlight Ana Maria Caballero, Nature Education Specialist
    Ana Maria Caballero McGuire

    As an Outdoor Educator, I love that I get to translate science and horticulture into hands-on teachable moments for children in our landscape! I also enjoy working with teachers to promote the use of outdoor spaces for meaningful life science education in schools.

  • Community Spotlight Jacob Suissa, PhD Candidate
    Jacob Suissa

    As a researcher, I am very fortunate to be part of the Arnold Arboretum community because it feels like a unique place where the advancement of science and knowledge is deeply enmeshed with the endeavors of a public garden.

  • Community Spotlight Rachel Lawlor, Arboretum Gardener
    Rachel Lawlor

    The community spirit at the Arboretum is truly palpable. From my first exposure as an Aggie intern in 2014, to being a full-time Gardener now, this has only grown. The folks who work here truly care about the Arboretum’s mission—and maybe even more so—about their colleagues.

  • Community Spotlight Jim Papargiris, Working Foreperson
    Jim Papargiris

    For the last 41 years, it has been an honor and privilege to contribute to the stewardship of the collections and landscape of the Arnold Arboretum. I feel a sense of gratitude and accomplishment each day and although there have been challenging times from winter storms, drought, and plant pests, to the world we find ourselves in today, the trees have provided me unwavering inspiration and pride.

  • Community Spotlight Lawrence Mullings, Artist and Volunteer
    Lawrence Mullings

    This Place nourishes the Soul as well as the Body. I returned for my health and rediscovered such beauty openly observed and freely given by all who crossed my path. This Palace of the Senses allowed me to create the Path Taken. Maybe my Exhibit can serve as a remainder of days passed, soon to return.

  • Community Spotlight Chris McArdle, Volunteer Tour Guide
    Chris McArdle leads a tour.

    Every tour brings a surprise, even after 36 years! It might be the sun catching the “Ruby Glow” witch hazel in February or the smell of toasted marshmallows from trodden katsura leaves in the fall. A squirrel running up a visitor’s trouser leg was perhaps the biggest surprise of them all.

  • Community Spotlight Rosetta Elkin, Harvard GSD Professor
    Roestta Elkin, Harvard GSD Professor Headshot

    Many students have never held a root in their hand, never looked at a flower very carefully, never even thought about tree architecture the study of plant form. We’re opening their eyes.

Student work by Sophie Geller, Dana Kash, Mary Miller