The Arboretum in February

Whether the ground is bare or blanketed in snow, the Arboretum in February is quiet and beautiful, with some joyful early blossoms and gorgeous bark. Witch-hazel is particularly beautiful, Hamamelis vernalis (Ozark witch hazel) and H. mollis (Chinese witch hazel) are lovely—blooming with exuberance on sunny days, crinkling up their petals when the cold returns. Bark also continues to be a winter attraction; download a self-guided tour, Bark for all seasons [pdf] to see the wonderful diversity of bark in the collections. Our Tree of the month [pdf] is Metasequoia glyptostroboides (dawn redwood), a living fossil discovered in China in the 1940s. A number of these trees grow in groves by the Hunnewell Building, on Bussey Hill, and on Peters Hill. Long panicles (male flowers) adorn the branches. For another self-guided tour, one that highlights our conifer collection, download the Conifer-tour [pdf]

On Sunday, March 7, join one of our monthly Winter Wellness Walks at 1:00pm. Come for one or all of these invigorating, monthly tours through the landscape, pausing to hear about seasonal interest, and finishing up with a hot drink in the Visitor Center. Walks are free, but please register.

Through February 14, the exhibition Drawing Trees, Painting the Landscape is in the Hunnewell Building Lecture Hall. This show of art by Frank M. Rines (1892-1962) includes original work from one of the five books Rines wrote and illustrated during his long tenure as an artist, teacher, draftsman, and artist community supporter.

Opening Friday, February 19, Bussey Brook Meadow, Its Seasons and Landscape, Photographs by Gunars Viksnins, will be displayed in the Hunnewell Building Lecture Hall. Viksnins’ photographs capture the essence and understated beauty of this “urban wild” within the Arnold Arboretum. An opening reception is on Saturday, February 20, 1:00-3:00pm. The public is cordially invited. All shows are free and open to the public. The Lecture Hall is also used for lectures, programs, meetings, and school groups, so please call 61.384.5209 for exhibition availability.

On Thursday, February 25 at 6:00pm, join Ben Cook for Signs of a Warming World. Ben’s talk will review some of the myriad indicators scientists monitor to understand the direction and pace of ongoing climate change. Free for members, students and Tree Spotters; $5 nonmember.

The Visitor Center and Art Exhibitions are open 10:00am–5:00pm, closed Wednesdays. Be sure to check out more classes and other activities on our calendar.