Arboretums are botanical gardens devoted to trees. They serve an important ecological function as well as being beautiful, restorative places for visitors.

Arboretums act as a refuge for the study and preservation of at risk and endangered tree species. They’re also where the public can access and observe natural tree forms and interactions. Here are five of our favorite arboretums that you should consider visiting.

#1: University of Guelph Arboretum

Modeled after the Arnold Arboretum at Harvard University, this arboretum was started in 1971. Now those plantings have paid off with a wide range of fully grown trees. The arboretum contains specialized gardens, botanical collections, and gene conservation programs. Many of Ontario’s native trees are present here, including maples, hickories, pines, and spruces.

#2: Biltmore Estate Arboretum

Located in Asheville, North Carolina, this arboretum was designed by America’s leading landscape architect, Frederick Law Olmsted. Today, the estate is a model of sustainability and includes a rose garden with more than 250 species. You can take a stroll through the estate extensive trails to take in the lush green forests.

#3: Dominion Arboretum

Started in 1889, the Dominion contains 26 hectares of well-established trees and shrubs. The Ottawa-based arboretum is known for having its own microclimate, which can produce unusually hot or cold temperatures. The Ornamental Garden, with its perennial borders, lilac walks, and roses, is a big hit among visitors. The wide range of trees includes birches, beeches, oaks, and horse chestnuts.

#4: Brooklyn Botanical Garden

New York City is better known for being a concrete jungle with a single strip of green in the middle of Manhattan. But the Brooklyn Botanical Garden is an overlooked gem. This stunning, 52-acre garden has a lily pool terrace, many varieties of roses, and hydrangeas. Some of its most popular and unusual trees include the Japanese Stewartia, the China fir, and the hackberry tree.

#5: North Carolina Arboretum

Also located in Asheville, this arboretum has 65 acres of cultivated gardens and well-preserved trails. It features a botanically-diverse set of plants that pay tribute to the region’s rich culture heritage. If you visit, don’t miss the bonsai garden, a visitor favorite and one of the most unique collections on the continent.

If you want to learn more about how to cultivate beautiful, native trees, we’re here to help. We are driven by curiosity and stay up to date on the latest pedagogical techniques in outdoor education. We’re experienced in communicating knowledge and understanding of nature to diverse audiences because we believe this is key to developing a sustainable society. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help with everything from environmental education to feasibility studies.

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