Collection Statistics

Collection Statistics

Living Collections

As of December 2016, the living collections comprised 15,462 individual plants (including nursery holdings) belonging to 10,589 accessions representing 3,828 taxa. Taken together, the collections are considered to be one of the largest and best documented woody plant collections in North America and the world. Many of these accessions or accession lineages are of historical and botanical importance, representing the original North American introductions of Eastern Asian plants collected by Arboretum staff and affiliates such as Charles Sprague Sargent, Ernest H. Wilson, John G. Jack, Joseph Rock, William Purdom.

Table 1. Taxonomic profile of the Living Collections of the Arnold Arboretum.a
RANK NUMBER
Families 104
Genera 356
Species 2,130
Subspecies 90
Varieties 344
Formae 69
Cultivars 1,454
Infraspecific Hybrids 445
Intergeneric Hybrids 14

aNumbers for infraspecific ranks correspond only to those accessions where rank is known.

Table 2. Provenance of Accessions in the Living Collections of the Arnold Arboretum.
PROVENANCE TOTAL NUMBER PERCENT OF TOTAL
Wild
Direct 2,800 26
Indirecta 832 8
Garden 3,026 29
Uncertainb 3,929 37

aFrom a cultivated plant of known (indirect) wild origin.
bIncludes 2,629 existing or spontaneous accessions whose provenance cannot be determined.

Dead Collections

Only a minority of the accessions ever attempted to be grown in the collections of the Arnold Arboretum are currently alive—some perished, while others representing propagules (seeds, cuttings, etc.) may have never grown to maturity. The records associated with these legacy collections hold immense value in documenting the history of plant introduction, since the Arboretum facilitated the initial point of entry in North America for many species.

As of December 2016, the legacy collections comprised 67,899 accessions representing 17,617 taxa. Of these, 65,094 individual plants (including nursery holdings) belonging to 43,695 accessions representing 13,551 taxa were inventoried within the living collections before perishing.

Table 3. Taxonomic profile of the Dead Collections of the Arnold Arboretum.b
RANK NUMBER
Families  215
Genera  1,161
Species  10,358
Subspecies  246
Varieties  1,520
Formae  276
Cultivars  6,377
Infraspecific Hybrids  1,390
Intergeneric Hybrids  95

bNumbers for infraspecific ranks correspond only to those accessions where rank is known.

Table 4. Provenance of the Dead Accessions of the Arnold Arboretum.
PROVENANCE TOTAL NUMBER PERCENT OF TOTAL
Wild
Direct  14,038  21
Indirectb  3,861  6
Garden  18,775  27
Uncertainc  31,225  46

bFrom a cultivated plant of known (indirect) wild origin.
cIncludes 1,212 existing or spontaneous accessions whose provenance cannot be determined.