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1927 Map of the Arboretum

Select Arboretum Publications

Charles Sprague Sargent seated in the library in an undated photograph. Arnold Arboretum Archives. Archives of the Arnold Arboretum.
Charles Sprague Sargent seated in the library in an undated photograph.
Arboretum propagator Jackson Dawson.
Arboretum propagator Jackson Dawson in an early automobile laden with plant material. J. Horace McFarland, 1904.

The Arnold Arboretum, it’s staff members, and associates have published many books, articles, and journals over the nearly 150 years since its founding in 1872. Our first director, Charles Sprague Sargent, was particularly prolific, making contributions to Garden and Forest, the Bulletin of Popular Information, and other publications during his tenure.

Many have been digitized and are available through the Biodiversity Heritage Library (BHL), a consortium of 12 natural history and botanical libraries. The Arnold Arboretum and partner institutions cooperate to digitize their legacy literature of biodiversity. That literature is then made available open access and free of charge as a part of a global “biodiversity commons.” BHL also serves as the foundational literature component of the Encyclopedia of Life (EOL).

Additionally, Journal of the Arnold Arboretum (1919-1990), which includes Alfred Rehder’s bibliography of Charles Sprague Sargent, is available at Botanicus Digital Library, a freely accessible portal to historic botanical literature from the Missouri Botanical Garden Library.

Read the Arboretum’s quarterly magazine Arnoldia.

Arboretum Institutional Publications
Bulletin of Popular Information (1911-1940) was the predecessor to our current quarterly journal Arnoldia.
Garden and Forest: A Journal of Horticulture, Landscape Art, and Forestry (1888-1898) was the first American journal to address the rise of these emerging fields. It contains articles on landscape design and preservation, national and urban park development, scientific forestry, and the conservation of forest resources. Search Garden and Forest.
Journal of the Arnold Arboretum (1919-1990) includes research papers in botany, especially taxonomy and phylogeny, anatomy, cytology, embryology, palynology, and ecology.
Sargentia: A Continuation of the Contributions from the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University (1942-1949) was, according to E.D. Merrill, “a place for the publication of important technical papers by [Arnold Arboretum] staff members that are too long for journal articles.” Merrill went on to state in his preface to the first issue, “It seems eminently fitting that this series of papers, sponsored by the institution that essentially represents the life-work of Charles Sprague Sargent, should bear his name.”
John George Jack (1861-1949)

The Pikes Peak, Plum Creek, and South Platte Forest Reserves (1900). Jack surveyed these western forest reserves for the U.S. government.
Charles Downing Lay (1877-1956) and Robert Wheelwright (1884-1965)

A Check-list of Plants Mentioned in the Arnold Arboretum Bulletins (1919) is a comprehensive index compiled to exhibit the Arnold Arboretum’s “introduction and testing of new varieties from different parts of the world; in rescuing from oblivion many native plants…and in fostering our inherited love for plants as part of the natural landscape.”
Susan Delano McKelvey (1883-1964)

The Lilac : A Monograph (1928). McKelvey’s monumental study of the genus Syringa.
Susan Delano McKelvey (1883-1964)

The Yuccas of the Southwestern United States, Part 2 (1947) (Part 1, 1938, currently not available online) is a study of yuccas and plants which McKelvey botanized during plant collecting expeditions to the American Southwest.
Alfred Rehder (1863-1949)

The Bradley Bibliography (1911-18) contains the titles of books and of articles in the “Proceedings of Scientific Societies and Journals” relating to the woody plants of the world, in all languages, published before the beginning of the twentieth century.
Charles Sprague Sargent (1841-1927)

A Catalogue of the Forest Trees of North America (1880) is a preliminary listing of the geographical distribution and economic properties of trees by species, and notably encourages botanists and naturalists to complete or correct any obsolete data within its pages.
Charles Sprague Sargent (1841-1927)

A Few Suggestions on Tree Planting (1876) encourages the public, particularly estate owners, to counteract the destruction of forests with detailed descriptions of how certain species thrive and function in the climate of Massachusetts, and provides horticultural procedures which ensure long-term efficiency and benefit.
Charles Sprague Sargent (1841-1927)

The First Fifty Years of the Arnold Arboretum (1922), reprinted from The Journal of the Arnold Arboretum Volume III number 3, offers a detailed history of the oldest public arboretum in North America and the people who helped create it.
Charles Sprague Sargent (1841-1927)

Forest Flora of Japan (1894) originally published in Garden and Forest, contains Sargent’s notes on the country’s flora based on his visit to Japan in 1893.
Charles Sprague Sargent (1841-1927)

Manual of the Trees of North America (exclusive of Mexico) (1905) “contains information concerning the trees of North America which has been gathered at the Arnold Arboretum over the last thirty years” (C.S. Sargent). The second edition (1922) contains additional illustrations from drawings by Charles Edward Faxon and Mary W. Gill.
Charles Sprague Sargent (1841-1927)

Report on the Forests of North America (exclusive of Mexico) (1884) is a detailed survey of North American trees by region, distribution, and economic uses. Includes regional color maps showing distribution of species and forest density. Another version, with detailed maps, is available at The US Census Bureau online.
Charles Sprague Sargent (1841-1927)

Scientific Papers of Asa Gray, selected by Charles Sprague Sargent (1889) is a compendium of Gray’s writings, considered to be some of the most influential of the nineteenth century, especially upon the theories of Charles Darwin.
Charles Sprague Sargent (1841-1927)

The Silva of North America (1891-1902) in fourteen folio volumes covers the physical aspects, locations, ecological role, and the historical background of every species of tree native to North America (excluding Mexico), with each genus illustrated by numerous detailed engravings.
Charles Sprague Sargent (1841-1927)

The Trees of Commonwealth Avenue, Boston (1909) provides a detailed analysis of this part of Frederick Law Olmsted‘s original Emerald Necklace design from 1880. Sargent suggests various methods of tree care and maintenance. The book is a noteworthy example of the development of urban forestry.
Charles Sprague Sargent (1841-1927)

The Woods of the United States (1885) lists the physical characteristics of United States trees by genus and species. Supplementary tables rank types of wood based upon fuel value, gravity, elasticity, and resistance to pressure.
George Russell Shaw (1848-1937)

The Genus Pinus (1914). The characteristics of Pinus include extreme adaptability to a range of climates. Shaw offers his own perspective on the species evolution, germination, and distribution.
George Russell Shaw (1848-1937)

The Pines of Mexico (1909) is a systematic arrangement of the wide range of pines native to the region. Mexico’s immense biodiversity provides an appropriate context for further study of the genus.
Ethelyn Maria Tucker (1871- )

Catalogue of the Library of the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University (1914-1933) is a three volume set that contains an alphabetical index of the 41,000 volumes held in the Arboretum’s library collection in 1933.
Ernest Henry Wilson (1876-1930)

America’s Greatest Garden: The Arnold Arboretum (1925) is Ernest Wilson’s published appreciation of the institution.
Ernest Henry Wilson (1876-1930)

The Cherries of Japan (1916) is Wilson’s comprehensive enumeration and description of various species of the genus Prunus encountered during his 1914 collecting trip in Japan.
Ernest Henry Wilson (1876-1930)

The Conifers and Taxads of Japan (1916) lists the native species encountered and collected during Wilson’s Arnold Arboretum-sponsored expedition to Japan in 1914. Wilson states in his introduction, “Indeed, in Japan one is never out of sight of conifers.”
Ernest Henry Wilson (1876-1930)

Leaves from My Chinese Notebook (1905-1906) is a compilation of articles by Wilson from the periodical, the Gardener’s Chronicle, detailing his explorations in western China from 1899-1905.
Ernest Henry Wilson (1876-1930) and Alfred Rehder (1863-1949)

A Monograph of Azaleas: Rhododendron subgenus Anthodendron (1921) is a study and enumeration of various Azaleas cultivated as garden plants in both the Old World and in North America, elaborating on previous descriptions with independent field research.
Ernest Henry Wilson (1876-1930) and Charles Sprague Sargent (1841-1927)

A Naturalist in Western China (1913), with an introduction by Charles Sprague Sargent, is a two-volume account of Wilson’s “eleven years’ travel, exploration, and observation in the more remote parts of the flowery kingdom.”
Ernest Henry Wilson (1876-1930)

Plantae Wilsonianae (1913, 1916-1917), an enumeration of the woody plants collected in western China for the Arnold arboretum of Harvard University during the years 1907, 1908, and 1910.