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1927 Map of the Arboretum

Plants

Sweetbay Magnolia (Magnolia virginiana var. australis) 1275-80*A in flower. Ned Friedman

Background

The Arnold Arboretum’s living collections are celebrated as some of the most comprehensive and best documented of their kind. Its rich holdings include temperate ligneous plants from around the world. Many of the plants originate from collecting expeditions, others derive from horticultural experimentation, and some were existing vegetation when the Arboretum was founded in 1872. Each of these plants—over 15,000 in all—has a story to tell, and they are preserved as both scientific and horticultural specimens to enrich our understanding of biodiversity through the institution’s research, education, and outreach efforts.

Plant Bios

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Illustration of Cercidiphyllum by Charles Faxon
882*A Map it ↗

Katsura

Scientific Name
Cercidiphyllum japonicum

The Arnold Arboretum’s oldest katsura arrived as seed in 1878. The story of how it came here is the opening of long series of exchanges between the Arboretum and researchers in Japan.

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Form of katsura from distance, showing red haze of spring flowers
Metasequoia
524-48*AA Map it ↗

Dawn Redwood

Scientific Name
Metasequoia glyptostroboides

This dawn redwood was grown from seed brought to the Arboretum in 1948 from China. Widespread during the Mesozoic Era (around 252 to 66 million years ago), dawn redwood narrowly escaped extinction. Today, it is a common feature among botanical gardens and parks across the temperate world.

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Collections

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Today's Walks

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Expeditions Unveiled

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Exploring the botanical diversity of Appalachia with international collaborators

Kang Wang uses an extendable utility pole with a Japanese harvest blade attached to the end to collect acorns from a Quercus coccinea in southern Ohio. Photo by Jared Rubinstein.