Adult Education

The Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University is a community resource for education, offering a variety of learning opportunities including lectures, classes, workshops, and tours of our living collections and historical landscape. Join us as we explore the biology and horticulture of woody plants, and delve into topics related to Earth’s biodiversity and evolutionary history, the environment, conservation biology, and key social issues associated with current science.

Featured Programs

Winter Trees


Introduction to Winter Tree Identification

Kyle Stephens, Arborist, Arnold Arboretum
2 Sessions: Saturday, December 5 and 12, 9:00am–12:30pm
Location: Hunnewell Building

Learn the basic information necessary to identify deciduous trees during their dormant season. Looking at specific character combinations, you will determine the genus and species of several types of trees in the Boston area. Class begins indoors with a discussion of basic classification techniques and continues outside to the Arboretum grounds to examine a variety of trees. This class is recommended for the beginner-to-intermediate tree observer. Dress in layers for both classroom and outdoor learning. A hand lens may be helpful, but is not necessary.
Fee $75 member, $100 nonmember

Register or call 617.384.5277.


Nature's Deep Design


A Beautiful Question: Finding Nature’s Deep Design
Frank Wilczek, PhD, Herman Feshbach Professor of Physics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and 2004 Nobel Laureate
1 Session: Tuesday, December 8, 7:00–8:30pm
Location: Hunnewell Building

Does the universe embody beautiful ideas? Artists as well as scientists throughout human history have pondered this “beautiful question.” Quantum physicist and Nobel laureate Frank Wilczek has been inspired throughout his career by his intuition to look for a deeper order of beauty in nature, to assume that the universe embodies beautiful forms, whose hallmarks are symmetry—harmony, balance, proportion—and economy. In this lecture, Professor Wilczek will share examples from Pythagoras, Galileo, Newton, Maxwell, Einstein, from twentieth century physics to the edge of knowledge today to demonstrate how our ideas about beauty and art are intertwined with our scientific understanding of the cosmos.
Fee Free members and students, $5 nonmember

Register or call 617.384.5277.