Skip to content
Growing and Stewarding a Magnificent Collection
Providing Holistic Care and Oversight of Our Living Collections
Enhancing Our Horticultural Legacy With Arnold Selects
Boosting the Next Generation of Garden Professionals
Improving the Herbarium of Cultivated Plants as a Resource
Expanding Archival Resources Through Donations
  • Growing and Stewarding a Magnificent Collection

    The living collections of the Arnold Arboretum by the numbers in 2021

  • Providing Holistic Care and Oversight of Our Living Collections

    Arborists prepare to ascend the canopy in the maple collection. In recent years, the horticulture department at the Arboretum has adopted an adaptive management perspective, monitoring our living collections with an eye towards continuous adjustment and improvement of their care. In 2020, we translated this perspective into a suite of tools called the Landscape Management System (LMS) to track our efforts in the landscape through new mobile applications, websites, and updated mapping information. Among the advances in 2021-22 was the deployment of PropManager at the Dana Greenhouses to record and track propagation treatments, critical information in sustaining the collections. In 2022, the Arboretum formed a consortium with 10 other public gardens to seek federal funding to advance the Arboretum’s Landscape Management System and deploy it at institutions across North America. Image: Arborists prepare to ascend the canopy for arboreal maintenance in the linden collection, photo by Kathleen Dooher.

  • Enhancing Our Horticultural Legacy With Arnold Selects

    A volunteer observes fall coloration on the Schlesingeri cultivar of red maple.While the Campaign for the Living Collections has significantly increased our historical work to explore and collect examples of temperate biodiversity from natural environments over the past decade, efforts to renew our contributions to American horticulture have also been on track. After several years of planning, Arboretum staff introduced Arnold Selects in 2021-22, a new plant introduction program designed to provide retail nurseries with new plant releases from our exploration work and fresh looks at previously-introduced Arnold Arboretum cultivars. Image: A volunteer observes leaf coloration on the Schlesinger maple (Acer rubrum ‘Schlesingerii’), an original introduction by the Arnold Arboretum reintroduced to the trade through the Arnold Selects program, photo by Suzanne Mrozak.

  • Boosting the Next Generation of Garden Professionals

    2022 Hunnewell Interns plan their capstone project on site at Weld HillThe Arboretum’s mission tenets of horticulture, research, and education coalesce through opportunities for on-the-job, summer training for students and trainees across a range of disciplines in the plant sciences. After a two-year pandemic hold, the Isabella Welles Hunnewell Internship Program returned in summer 2021 with a cohort of four individuals. The success of this smaller cohort in a transitional year allowed our Horticulture Department to return to pre-pandemic levels of program engagement in 2022 with eight interns selected to work and learn alongside staff in Horticulture, Curation, and Plant Production. As part of their experience, interns collaborated on a capstone project to add a visitor path articulated by additional plantings in the landscape at Weld Hill. Image: Summer 2022 Hunnewell Interns meet in the wooded area at Weld Hill as part of their capstone project to create a new visitor access path, photo by Rachel Brinkman.

  • Improving the Herbarium of Cultivated Plants as a Resource

    Devika Jaikumar views a lilac voucher in the Cultivated HerbariumIn 2022, the Curatorial Department initiated a complete reorganization of the Herbarium of Cultivated Plants, arranging holdings alphabetically instead of phylogenetically for ease of use by staff visiting researchers. Pressed specimens in the collection preserve the genetic identity of accessioned plants past and present at the Arboretum, useful as references for plant identification, species evolution, documentation of where plants grow over time, and even analysis of climate change. Image: Curatorial Assistant Devika Jaikumar views a voucher specimen of a lilac from the Arboretum’s collection in the Cultivated Herbarium, photo by Jon Hetman.

  • Expanding Archival Resources Through Donations

    Shiu Ying Hu teaches at a silk tree at the Arnold ArboretumThe Arboretum Archives received several generous donations of materials over the last fiscal years, including papers and ephemera of Richard Howard, former Arboretum director, donated by his son Bruce Howard; papers and slides from the Sasaki Master Planning project for the Arboretum in the 1990s from Joseph Hibbard of the Sasaki firm; and books and slides belonging to Shiu-Ying Hu, late Emeritus Senior Research Fellow and namesake of the Shiu-Ying Hu Award at the Arboretum, donated by her nephew Thomas Hu. Image: Shiu-Ying Hu discusses the flowers of a silk tree (Albizia julibrissin) with visitors at the Arboretum in the 1990s; photo from the Photographic Archives of the Arnold Arboretum, gift of Thomas and Dorothy Hu.