Have you seen this? Archive

Wood Database

The Wood Database by Eric Meier

May 28, 2020

Over time, Eric Meier further built his learning with USDA wood engineering manuals. Realizing that visual identification is central to common practices in dendrology, Meier scanned wood samples and welcomed numerous contributors to the database.

Creator: wmaster890 for Arbor Day Foundation.

US cities are losing 36 million trees a year

March 12, 2020

If you're looking for a reason to care about tree loss, this summer's record-breaking heat waves might be it. Trees can lower summer daytime temperatures by as much as 10 degrees Fahrenheit, according to a recent study.

Mike Nichols, Tomas Cardoso and Romeo Gonzales remove a young tree from their truck. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Street Trees Could Help Boston Adapt To Climate Change

February 18, 2020

Tree survival is especially important in a place like East Boston. The neighborhood has the lowest tree canopy coverage in the city, which means that during the summer, it also has some of the worst hot spots.

Lead study author Wyatt Oswald conducts a pond coring research study at Lily Pond in Edgartown, Martha's Vineyard.

Finding new land-management lessons in old ways

January 23, 2020

A new study led by scholars at Harvard and elsewhere overturns long-held beliefs about the role humans played in shaping the American landscape before and after European colonization. The findings offer insights and lessons in managing biodiverse landscapes in the Northeast.

John Kost, left, and Barry Johnson, citizen foresters for the nonprofit group The Greening of Detroit, plant a tree in the Osborn neighborhood in Detroit in 2016. Photo by Carlos Osorio/AP.

Why Detroit Residents Pushed Back Against Tree-Planting

December 12, 2019

A landmark report conducted by University of Michigan environmental sociologist Dorceta Taylor in 2014 warned of the “arrogance” of white environmentalists when they introduce green initiatives to black and brown communities.

Plantsnap! mobile application

PlantSnap! where nature takes root

October 7, 2019

PlantSnap! Identify plants, flowers, cacti, succulents and mushrooms in seconds with the click of a button on your mobile device.

Drumlin Farm crop manager Matt Celona hand waters a row of Swiss Chard. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

5 Takeaways For New England From U.N. Report On Climate Change And Land Use

August 9, 2019

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is out with a new report Thursday examining how land use contributes to climate change and other environmental problems.

Lewis Hine, Play Ground in Tenement Alley, Boston, 1909

Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum: Big Plans, Picturing Social Reform

July 1, 2019

Big Plans: Picturing Social Reform examines how landscape architects and photographers advocated for social reform in the development of Boston, New York, and Chicago in the late 1800s and early 1900s.

Pterocarya stenoptera. Arboretum Aubonne, Switzerland

Project Zelkova: Pterocarya and Juglandaceae

June 3, 2019

Project Zelkova: Pterocarya and Juglandaceae: the genus Pterocarya has six extant species with similar disjunctions as in Zelkova. Many such isolated populations are very threatened and have been never collected and/or investigated.

Glass flowers

Leafing through Glass Flowers

March 22, 2019

On a recent Thursday, a team delicately repaired, cleaned, and photographed select models in a dark, climate-controlled room. A good portion of the 4,000-piece collection, crafted exclusively for Harvard by father-and-son artists Leopold and Rudolf Blaschka from 1886 to 1936, lined shelves and bakery racks nearby.

Frigid Midwest Temperatures Are Bad News For This Invasive Tree-Eating Bug

March 5, 2019

The deep freeze that has descended on the Midwest is causing problems for millions of people. It's also bad news for an invasive species that's been wiping out the region's ash trees: the emerald ash borer.

Stone wall, with moss, Putney, Vermont. Anna Kusmer

New England Is Crisscrossed With Thousands of Miles of Stone Walls

January 29, 2019

Walk into a patch of forest in New England, and chances are you will—almost literally—stumble across a stone wall. According to Robert Thorson, a landscape geologist at University of Connecticut, these walls are “damn near everywhere” in the forests of rural New England.

American Woods

The American Woods

December 21, 2018

The American Woods online features pages from Romeyn Beck Hough’s unique collection of more than 1000 paper-thin wood samples representing more than 350 varieties of North American trees.

The Alexander Apple 1818. Watercolour by William Hooker (1779-1832)

Heritage Apples at Royal Horticultural Society

September 5, 2018

People have been growing apples for centuries, developing thousands of apple varieties, each with their own unique taste and appearance.

Carl Linnaeus

Carl Linnaeus: Naming Nature

August 20, 2018

This BBC podcast is a panel discussion about Carl Linnaeus (1707-1778), who devised the formal two-part naming system we use to classify all life forms.

Harvard Asia Center

Ernest Henry Wilson at Harvard Asia Center

July 26, 2018

Ernest Henry Wilson was the furthest traveled of all the Arnold Arboretum’s plant explorers of the early twentieth century.

Wooden skyscraper

The Weird, Wooden Future of Skyscrapers

January 15, 2018

Framework, a 12-story mixed-use tower that will soon rise in Portland, Oregon’s Pearl District. When it’s finished (likely in 2019), it will be the country’s tallest human-occupied all-wooden structure.

Bodenham Arboretum Forest School

Bodenham Arboretum Forest School

December 1, 2017

Forest School is for all ages--children, including the under-fives and adults. Activities are run throughout the year, including during school holidays at Bodenham Arboretum.

The Alexander Apple 1818. Watercolour by William Hooker (1779-1832)

Heritage Apples at Royal Horticultural Society

October 16, 2017

People have been growing apples for centuries – developing thousands of apple varieties, each with their own unique taste and appearance. Sadly, many of these varieties have disappeared or are very rare.

Map of Chicago’s Tree Canopy

A Very Detailed, Interactive Map of Chicago’s Tree Canopy

October 5, 2017

This map reveals some startling patterns in canopy cover that can help neighborhoods improve their environments and assist their communities.

Creighton Educational Garden

Learn Botanical Illustration at Wellesley College Botanic Gardens

September 1, 2017

"The Art-Garden Collection" offers an entire series of courses including botanical art and drawing, composition, sketching, research, mixed media, independent studio sessions, and more.

Trade card, Rice's Seeds, Cambridge, New York, 1887

Cultivating America’s Gardens at Smithsonian

August 1, 2017

American garden-making has evolved over time, shaped by history, social attitudes, the environment, and new ideas. Illustrating this history with books and other materials from their vast holdings, the Smithsonian Libraries and Smithsonian Gardens take us on a special kind of garden tour.

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, photograph by Ann Love

Project FeederWatch: all about the birds

July 5, 2017

Project FeederWatch is a winter-long survey of birds that visit feeders at backyards, nature centers, community areas, and other locales in North America. Anyone interested in birds can participate.

Catalogue of Vegetable Seeds. 1850.

A Short History of the Seed & Nursery Catalogue in Europe and the U.S.

June 5, 2017

As more libraries put the contents of their collections online, it will be easier to search collections and write more thorough histories of gardening.

James Arnold Mansion

Old is new again: Meet the new James Arnold Mansion

May 3, 2017

The Wamsutta Club formed in 1866 as a social/networking group for successful entrepreneurs of New Bedford. They bought the James Arnold Mansion in 1919. Club members have recently founded James Arnold Mansion, Inc., a non-profit organization which will help restore James Arnold's home, a historic landmark of New Bedford.

Spider monkeys from a fore-edge painting on The Natural History of Monkeys (1838)

Lovely Hidden Paintings Adorned the Edges of Historic Books

April 12, 2017

A fore-edge painting refers to an image painted or drawn on the closed leaves of a book. While covering the collected page edges in gold or silver leaf was a popular choice, sometimes artists went one step further and painted whole scenes and landscapes on them. This form of fore-edge decoration is known as "all-edge' painting" and it was only the beginning.

Water Lilies

Treacherous Beauty: Water Lilies As Harbingers Of Climate Change

January 30, 2017

"Water lilies thrive not just in stagnant waters, but in warming ones. And this summer, the hottest on record, they bloomed with abandon."

Science and the Artist's Book

Science and the Artist’s Book

December 12, 2016

In 1993, the Smithsonian Institution Libraries and the Washington Project for the Arts (WPA) invited a group of nationally recognized book artists to create new works of art based on classic volumes from the Heralds of Science collection of the Dibner Library of the History of Science and Technology, a part of the Smithsonian Institution Libraries' Special Collections.

Natural History Museum Data Portal

Natural History Museum Data Portal

November 30, 2016

The resources and data in this incredible Data Portal of the Natural History Museum in London have historically only been accessed when academics take the opportunity to visit in person. There are currently over 600,000 digitized Botanical specimen records available.

Champion Trees

American Forests – Champion Trees

October 17, 2016

Champion trees are the superstars of their species — and there are more than 700 of them in our annual register. Each champion is the result of a lucky combination: growing in a spot protected by the landscape or by people who have cared about and for it, good soil, the right amount of water, and resilience to the elements, surviving storms, disease and pests.

Choix des Plus Belles Fleurs

The Rare Book Room

September 30, 2016

The "Rare Book Room" has been constructed as an educational website intended to allow the visitor to examine and read some of the great books of the world.

National Geographic

National Geographic Topographical Maps Online

August 26, 2016

National Geographic has built an easy to use web interface that allows anyone to quickly find any 7.5 minute topo in the continental U.S.A. for downloading and printing. Each topo has been pre-processed to print on a standard home, letter size printer. These are the same topos that were printed by USGS for decades on giant bus-sized presses but are now available in multi-page PDFs that can be printed just about anywhere.

gwa logo

GWA: The Association for Garden Communicators

July 20, 2016

The Association for Garden Communicators is an organization of professionals in the green industry including book authors, bloggers, staff editors, syndicated columnists, freelance writers, photographers, speakers, landscape designers, television and radio personalities, consultants, publishers, extension service agents and more.

Charles Darwin

Darwin by Post

May 30, 2016

Darwin By Post transposes Charles Darwin's correspondence, diaries (as "blogs"), images, maps, references, and publications into an equivalent social networking "feed."

William James Beal

The World’s Longest-Running Experiment is Buried in a Secret Spot in Michigan

April 27, 2016

In the fall of 1879, Dr. William James Beal walked to a secret spot on Michigan State University’s campus and planted a strange crop: 20 narrow-necked glass bottles, each filled with a mixture of moist sand and seeds.

Eagles on nest, photograph by Sue Greeley

Mr. President, The First Lady, and their twin hatchlings at The National Arboretum

March 21, 2016

In 2014, a pair of mated Bald Eagles chose the most idyllic of nest sites within the United States’ National Capital (Washington, DC), nestled high in a Tulip Poplar Tree amongst The Azalea Collection at the United States National Arboretum. This was the first time Bald Eagles nested in this location since 1947. This pair raised 1 eaglet successfully in 2015. Now another pair of eaglets are hatching. You can watch the nest live on Eagle Cam!

acorn bread

Acorn Bread in Iron Age of North-western Iberia, from Gathering to Baking

February 29, 2016

Archaeologists study the economic uses of acorns in breadmaking thousands of years ago.

The Highgrove Florilegium

The Highgrove Florilegium

January 25, 2016

The Highgrove Florilegium will not only provide an historical record of the plants in my garden, but will also be enjoyed by many of those who have an abiding love for plants and gardens’--HRH The Prince of Wales

Project ARCC logo

Project ARCC: archivists responding to climate change

December 16, 2015

Project ARCC believes that archivists, those responsible for the preservation of history for future generations, should be as passionate and concerned about preserving a habitable and safe planet for future generations.

Rhododendron giganteum

Massachusetts Horticultural Society and The Digital Commonwealth

November 30, 2015

The Botanical Print Collection of The Massachusetts Horticultural Society Library, comprising of over 1,000 botanical illustrations, has been digitized and can now be viewed online at Digital Commonwealth.

Metasequoia glyptostroboides, 1940-2010.

October 28, 2015

Metasequoia glyptostroboides, popularly known in the west as the "dawn redwood" and in Chinese as shui-sha (water fir), was discovered in the Hupeh (Hubei) Province on the border of Szechuan (Sichuan) Province in west central China in the 1940s. The tree had been believed to have become extinct millions of years ago but that was found not to be the case.

The Boston Public Market

The Boston Public Market

September 16, 2015

The Boston Public Market is the only locally sourced market of its kind in the United States. Everything sold at the Market is produced or originates in New England. The Market is a civic resource, educating the public about food sources, nutrition, and preparation.

The Silk Road

The International Dunhuang Project: The Silk Road Online

August 31, 2015

The International Dunhuang Project (IDP) is a ground-breaking international collaboration to make information and images of all manuscripts, paintings, textiles and artifacts from Dunhuang and archaeological sites of the Eastern Silk Road freely available on the Internet and to encourage their use through educational and research programs.

Muskeget Island

Crocker Snow, Jr.’s Muskeget Island

July 20, 2015

Muskeget Island comprises 250 acres of sand, American beach grass, bayberry, Rosa rugosa, wild flowers, low Eastern red cedar, and seemingly endless snarls of poison ivy.

Portrait of Carolus Linnaeus

Order from Chaos: Linnaeus Disposes

June 22, 2015

Order from Chaos: Linnaeus Disposes provides an in-depth overview of Carolus Linnaeus, the father of modern taxonomy.

John Stevens Henslow

On the Trail of Medicines at Cambridge University Botanic Garden

May 18, 2015

On the Trail of Medicines at Cambridge University Botanic Garden gives an in-depth history of the ways in which plant and horticultural sciences have influenced medical research.

2015 International Year of Soils

April 22, 2015

Soils are a finite natural resource and are nonrenewable on a human time scale. Soils are the foundation for food, animal feed, fuel and natural fiber production, the supply of clean water, nutrient cycling and a range of ecosystem functions. The area of fertile soils covering the world's surface is limited and increasingly subject to degradation, poor management and loss to urbanization. ncreased awareness of the life-supporting functions of soil is called for if this trend is to be reversed and so enable the levels of food production necessary to meet the demands of population levels predicted for 2050.

Welcome to JSTOR EcoBot II collection, Arnoldia!

March 30, 2015

Researchers of plant and life sciences, historical landscape studies, and New England history can now access decades of Arnoldia through the Ecology & Botany II Collection of JSTOR, an online repository with access to thousands of academic journals.


Garden Stories

March 23, 2015

“Garden Stories” is a week long social media event for garden lovers. The campaign will explore the fascinating world of gardening, from the rise of agriculture to the home garden and the mail order gardening phenomenon.

The Travelogues of Isabel Anderson

February 25, 2015

Although she is perhaps known most widely today as a children’s author, former Brookline resident Isabel Anderson published ten travelogues between 1914 and 1936. Isabel, and her husband Larz, were among many wealthy world travelers of their time, but the Andersons position in diplomatic circles gave them access to people and places unavailable to many other travel writers. Isabel Anderson's travelogues still make interesting reading today and remain available in a number of libraries. Her books provide valuable details on travel in the Anderson’s era and cultural perceptions of Americans of the time, as well vivid interpretations of the history, folklore, and geography of the many countries they visited over the course of their lives.

Seed Savers Exchange

January 28, 2015

Seed Savers Exchange, located on the 890-acre Heritage Farm in Decorah, Iowa, offers an alternative model to big agriculture through encouraging participatory preservation among its members, and by signing the safe seed pledge. Seed Savers Exchange knows that the future of our planet depends on a genetically diverse food supply and carries out its important work.


Jen Kettell

December 22, 2014

Jen Kettell started her career as an Arborist in 2003, through the Hunnewell internship program at the Arnold Arboretum. She later officially became horticultural technologist and went on to maintain the Leventritt Shrub and Vine Garden, in addition to the open, natural areas of the grounds which include junipers, dwarf conifers, hickories, horsechestnuts, and many other "mixed" collections.

The Cultural Landscape Foundation

November 12, 2014

The Cultural Landscape Foundation (TCLF) provides people with the ability to see, understand and value landscape architecture and its practitioners, in the way many people have learned to do with buildings and their designers. Through its Web site, lectures, outreach and publishing, TCLF broadens the support and understanding for cultural landscapes nationwide to help safeguard our priceless heritage for future generations.

Susan Hardy Brown

October 15, 2014

Susan Hardy Brown's engagement with materials is both innovative and playful. She embraces the surprise element inherent in artistic processes; extending traditional drawing techniques, experimenting in watercolor, oil, and mixed media, and working on varied grounds including plaster, playing cards, found wood, and stone.

National Invasive Species Information Center (NISIC)

September 22, 2014

The National Invasive Species Information Center (NISIC) is a gateway to the latest research and updates on invasive species, down to the local level. Color photographs and host tree information provide helpful visual references.

Sea Change Boston

August 18, 2014

It is projected that sea levels will rise two feet by mid-century and six feet by 2100. The new tide line will transform the coastal landscape of Greater Boston and increase the probability of a major storm devastating the metropolitan region. The Sea Change: Boston exhibition examines Boston's vulnerabilities to sea level rise and demonstrates proactive design strategies at the building, city, and regional scale. The exhibition is intended to catalyze conversations with a broader audience about the tough questions and regional implications of sea level rise.

Trees Inside Out

July 30, 2014

A virtual exhibition created and produced by the Montréal Botanical Garden in partnership with the Centre for Forest Research (CEF) and the Virtual Museum of Canada (VMC).

The Mary May Binney Wakefield Charitable Trust

June 18, 2014

Polly was an advocate and leader on many environmental issues of her day. She was a trained horticulturist and landscape designer who loved to design gardens and experiment with shrubs and trees, most notably Kousa dogwoods. Two of the most highly praised dogwood cultivars today, “Greensleeves” and “Fanfare,” were actually propagated and patented by Polly.

The Vernal Pool

May 12, 2014

The Vernal Pool Association began in 1990 as an environmental outreach project at Reading Memorial High School, Reading, Massachusetts. It is now an independent group of individuals attempting to educate others about vernal pool ecology, the local environment, biodiversity, and the protection of natural resources.

International Lilac Society

April 30, 2014

The International Lilac Society (ILS) is a group of people who have a common interest in lilacs. Their website is a knowledge base of lilac cultivars, horticultural practices, care guidelines, history, retail sources, and upcoming events. They also run an active crowdsourcing project for images of lilac stamps from all over the globe.

Botanical Teaching Posters Collection

March 31, 2014

Educational wallcharts were designed for classroom use in the early 1800's. They were first made in small format and depicted simple scenes and objects for primary school teaching. Around 1870 wallcharts were produced and sold in large quantities not only for primary schools but also for higher education. Several factors contributed to the use of wallcharts. Lithography was invented in the late 1700's and made possible the production of large color prints at a reasonable price. In the nineteenth century in Germany the educational system underwent major reform. In 1852 the average schoolteacher had 136 students in their classroom. It was difficult to pass engravings around a classroom and almost impossible to show students the view through a microscope. Large wall images could be viewed from almost every corner of the classroom and became popular with instructors. Botanische Wandtafeln, or, Botanical Wallcharts, show anatomical and morphological details of plants. The Botany Libraries and Archives own several incomplete sets of Botanische Wandtafeln, among them charts by Leopold Kny, Alios Pokorny, Engleder, Hartinger and Schlitzberger.

Go Orchids

February 28, 2014

Go Orchids, a tool to explore orchids native to North America, is brought to you by The North American Orchid Conservation Center. Go Orchids currently focuses on orchids in New England and the mid-Atlantic region, but orchids of the southeast and Alaska are also being added. The website is similar to Go Botany, developed by New England Wild Flower Society, and will eventually include all of the orchid species in the U.S. and Canada.


Archives of American Gardens Mystery Gardens Initiative

December 9, 2013

The Archives of American Gardens’ holdings include over 80,000 images of gardens dating from colonial times to the present. These images come from literally thousands of different sources and were not always accompanied by basic information (such as owner or location) that would identify them. Without this fundamental data, these images lose much of their informational value.

American Gardening

November 12, 2013

Mickey states, “The focus of my work was to study the connection between marketing and the garden in nineteenth century America. I began by looking at seed and nursery catalogs from that time, and I never left them. I couldn’t get enough of the catalogs. I loved the language the writers used and the images, but especially what the catalogs taught us about gardening.”

Evolving Landscapes: 100 Years of Change in Western China

October 28, 2013

Wilson created hundreds of large-format photos across western China – one of the most biologically diverse regions in the world outside of the tropics. Yin re-photographed the same locations 100 years later, allowing viewers to explore a complex and diverse range of environmental, social and economic changes. Expert commentary will accompany each comparative set of photographs.

Intertwined at Maudslay State Park

September 30, 2013

Rebekah Lord Gardiner is an artist and printmaker who visited the "Maudslay," the Moseley Estate Collection.

Arnold Arboretum Library on Twitter

September 16, 2013

The Arnold Arboretum Horticultural Library is now on Twitter, and it's a great way to share real-time updates about events, exhibits, lectures, featured books, featured images, blog posts, news stories, archival treasures, trivia and more!

Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor

August 19, 2013

Summer is the perfect time for exploring the wilderness throughout New England. When planning your trip consider the Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor, which runs from from Worcester, Massachusetts to Providence, Rhode Island through urban landscapes, historic villages, farmlands, and forests.

Chicago Botanic Garden Brings Rare Botanical Volumes to Life

July 1, 2013

Copper engraving, painted by Mme Vincent of a buttercup from Henriette Vincent, Etudes de fleurs et de fruits (Paris, 1820). Courtesy of the Rare Book Collection of the Lenhardt Library of the Chicago Botanic Garden.

Inorganic flora

June 3, 2013

A front view of Lathyrus odoratus L. 2009-2012. By Macoto Murayama. Image courtesy of Frantic Gallery.

StackLife DPLA

April 29, 2013

StackLife DPLA from the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) demonstrates how the DPLA’s collection of books can be mashed up with other collections and browsed in highly innovative ways. Users can find and freely read 1.7 million books from the DPLA, the Biodiversity Heritage Library, the Hathi Trust, and the Internet Archive’s Open Library.

Pennsylvania Horticultural Society

April 1, 2013

Check out the new website of the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society--your resource for information on gardening, greening, and learning! Along with optimal navigability, it's now easier to connect on social media with the PHS Social Stream, you can also ask questions about gardening and horticulture with Ask PHS, visit the PHS McLean Library, and get to know the PHS Blog.

Arbonauts: of trees, data, and teens

March 11, 2013

Colarboretum: This project uses data collected from color sensors to visually display conditions across the Arnold Arboretum. The Arboretum is split into four zones. Each zone displays the colors of the sky, ground and surrounding trees.

Arbotopia – Bob Mayer

February 4, 2013

Come and see the new blog Arbotopia, observations of fauna and other things natural in the Emerald Necklace, created by Arnold Arboretum docent and birding expert Bob Mayer.


What Makes the Reindeer Fly?

December 10, 2012

Lloyd Library and Museum in Cincinatti, Ohio presents “What Makes the Reindeer Fly?,” a special exhibit on hallucinogenic mushrooms, with a special focus on Fly Agaric (Amanita muscaria Lam.), a mushroom that figures prominently in the development of the legend of Santa's flying reindeer. This is the same mushroom that is often depicted in children's literature, shows up as a theme in children's toys, and in many other places.

Early Maps of the Arnold Arboretum

November 12, 2012

Come celebrate Geography Awareness Week with us and view these late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century maps and plans of the Arnold Arboretum held by the Norman B. Leventhal Map Center at Boston Public Library

American Society of Botanical Artists

October 22, 2012

American Society of Botanical Artists, a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting public awareness of contemporary botanical art, honoring its traditions, and furthering its development.

A historical guided tour of Kew Gardens

October 1, 2012

This virtual tour is one of many opportunities to view past and present together on Google partner Historypin. Historypin helps people come together from across generations, cultures, and places to share small glimpses of the past and to build the story of human history.

Go Botany

September 19, 2012

Go Botany is a rich educational resource offered by the New England Wild Flower Society and funded by the National Science Foundation to encourage informal, self-directed education in botany for science students and beginning and amateur botanists. Professors, teachers, and environmental educators can share curricula and teaching ideas.

Self-Guided Walking Tours of Boston

August 13, 2012

The New England Landscape Design and History Association (NELDHA) offers online materials for self-guided walking tours of Boston's parks, gardens, and green spaces. Maps, narratives, and additional resources unique to each neighborhood provide immersion and guidance for visitors of all ages.

Metasequoia — Student Artwork

July 2, 2012

After a few weeks of researching various seed cones though drawings and painted studies, students in Paul Olson's Junior Illustration class at MassArt were asked to make an illustration for a poster or a book based on an open Metasequoia seed cone and the plant's reputation as a "living fossil." Students also completed a final project of their own design, a piece inspired by their visit to the Arboretum's Horticultural Library, the Herbarium, and the Living Collections of the Arnold Arboretum.

The Forest Of The Future

June 4, 2012

Singapore—known worldwide as the “Garden City” because it has more than 300 parks—is poised to become the “City in a Garden.” An ambitious project is converting 250 acres of waterfront property into a horticultural recreation area. The project includes a forest of "supertrees," some fitted with solar panels to store energy for lighting them at night.

Mulai Kathoni

May 16, 2012

Jadav Payeng has been instrumental in converting a sand bar in the middle of the river Brahmaputra in Assam, India, into a huge forest. His work over the past 30 years is receiving recognition around the world by tourists and film makers.

View: Ways of Seeing

April 30, 2012

The Lloyd Library and Museum is celebrating the 100th anniversary of Japan's gift of cherry trees to our nation's capital with a look at Cincinnati's own connections to Japan, cherry trees, and the Lloyds.


Frederick Law Olmsted Papers Project

April 9, 2012

April, 2012 marks the 190th anniversary of the birth of Frederick Law Olmsted (1822-1903), the celebrated landscape architect who designed the Arnold Arboretum as the second-largest link in Boston’s Emerald Necklace.

Plant Profile - Willow with Kevin LindgaardSalix Hookeriana

Wonder Tree: Create a Green Oasis

March 19, 2012

Willows are a blend of beauty, diversity, adaptability, and utility which marks them aside from many other temperate trees. Wonder Tree can help you grow your own willows for use and ornament. You can watch these trees mature to full size within your own life time, or you can use their shoots as raw material for other products and activities.

Botany Blueprint

March 5, 2012

Botany Blueprint is a collection of botanical photography and a study of plant design, specifically regarding the form and function of seed pods. Individually, each photograph is a portrait of a unique specimen; as a series, the photographs become an inquiry into the evolution and diversity of plant design. Laurent's photographs are published in her column at Print magazine, where she writes about the form and function of seed pods. Intended to advance botanical literacy and make plants relevant to a broad audience, the project will be compiled in a forthcoming book.

Henry Fox Talbot Museum

February 15, 2012

Lacock Abbey was originally built as a nunnery in southwest England in 1232. When William Henry Fox Talbot came to live there in 1827, he grew his own botanical garden and photographed the plants using the negative-positive process of his own invention, providing the basic method for almost all 19th and 20th century photography.

Ellie Davies Photography

February 1, 2012

From the exhibition catalog of her work: "Davies has intervened in areas of the forest landscape to create images that express her relationship to the forest. And though each body of work stands alone as a distinct series, together they trace the trajectory of Davies’ ongoing exploration of the forest as a cultural landscape."

The Atkins Family in Cuba: A Photograph Exhibit

January 3, 2012

In the late 19th century, Boston merchant Edwin F. Atkins was a dominant force in the U.S.-Cuban sugar market. His firm, E. Atkins & Co., established sugarcane plantations along the southern coast of Cuba near the cities of Cienfuegos and Trinidad. From the 1840s through the 1920s, the Atkins family successfully operated their sugar business on the island, safely seeing it through the abolition of slavery, Cuba's fight for independence from Spain, and the changing agricultural and industrial practices of sugar production.


Dried Botanical ID

December 12, 2011

Dried botanicals are imported for varied uses including potpourri, decorative plant arrangements, and handicraft items. They consist of whole or sectioned fungi, fruits, seeds, leaves, and almost anything that is botanical, has abundant air spaces ("physical fixatives" for the synthetic oils), has structural interest, and/or is inexpensive (e.g. lawn sweepings and waste products of other industries). These botanicals may include potentially toxic species, invasives, or even plant diseases.

Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia

November 28, 2011

America's oldest natural history museum is kicking off their bicentennial celebration in 2012 with a countdown made up of “200 Years. 200 Stories” where you can meet some of their “quirkier personalities” and discover the secret stories behind many of their most well-known exhibits and scientific breakthroughs.

Urban Forest

November 14, 2011

Both “experts and non-experts” alike have been invited to participate in an urban forest research project, the San Francisco Urban Forest Map. You can jump right into the map itself and see how the Map creators’ goal “to work toward building a complete, dynamic picture of the urban forest” works.


October 31, 2011

According to Botanist: The songs of Botanist are told from the perspective of The Botanist, a crazed man of science who lives in self-imposed exile, as far away from Humanity and its crimes against Nature as possible. In his sanctuary of fantasy and wonder, which he calls the Verdant Realm, he surrounds himself with plants and flowers, finding solace in the company of the Natural world, and envisioning the destruction of man. There, seated upon his throne of Veltheimia, The Botanist awaits the day when humans will either die or kill each other off, which will allow plants to make the Earth green once again.

80 Years of History and Archives at the Montréal Botanical Garden

October 17, 2011

To mark its 80th birthday, the Montréal Botanical Garden, a Space for Life, invites everyone to visit the all-new virtual exhibition on its website, 80 Years of History and Archives at the Montréal Botanical Garden.

The Magic and Myth of Alchemy

October 3, 2011

However one regards it as a science and philosophy, Alchemy provided the beginnings of chemistry, and certainly helped to develop the apparati of chemistry. It is part of the history of science, which is the history of human interaction with nature, and humanity's attempts to harness the power of nature for very human needs and wants.

On Willows and Birches

September 19, 2011

Or rather, Have You Heard, “On Willows and Birches,” written by John Williams, Boston Pops Laureate Conductor for former BSO Principal Harpist Ann Hobson Pilot. “The atmospheric "On Willows" movement is prefaced by the Biblical quote "We hanged our harps upon the willows…" from Psalm 137. The lively, rhythmically vibrant "On Birches" notes a line from Robert Frost's poem "Birches" -- "One could do no worse than be a swinger of birches."

Archangel Ancient Tree Archive

September 5, 2011

The Archangel Ancient Tree Archive is an organization which is collecting genetic material from very large and old trees for preservation and to clone new trees for reforestation. Since 2008 they have collected 55 separate genotypes of old growth Coast Redwoods alone, as well as a variety of other samples from significant trees, from which they are propagating new trees.

Charles Darwin

Darwin & gender: a new initiative

August 22, 2011

The works of Charles Darwin (1809-1882) may have helped form the basis of modern science, but he remains a controversial figure. His views on gender are no less provocative than his theory of evolution. University of Cambridge scholar Philippa Hardman helped launch the Darwin Correspondence Project to reveal his less-known writings about gender which paradoxically reflect the Victorian Era during which he worked.

Images of Nature

Images of Nature

August 8, 2011

Home to the largest natural history collection in the world, The Natural History Museum, London, has just opened a new exhibit of over 110 images of natural phenomena. Images of Nature spans 350 years, including modern images created by scientists, imagining specialists, photographers, and micro-CT scanners depicted alongside historic watercolors and paintings from artists such as bird illustrator John Gerrard Keulemans and botanical artist Georg Ehret.

Central Park

Central Park Entire, The Definitive Illustrated Map

July 25, 2011

Edward S. Barnard, author of New York City Trees, teamed up with artist and art director Ken Chaya to create Central Park Entire, The Definitive Illustrated Map, a wonderful tree and trail map of Central Park.


The Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management

July 11, 2011

The Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management has created a great resource for tips, tricks, and information on coastal landscaping. The site is prepared to assist with any obstacles that arise in landscaping on the coast including, wind, salt spray, storm waves, and shifting, parched, and sandy soils. The site also includes a list of plants best suited for the coastal conditions in Massachusetts, as well as suggestions as to where to buy them.

New England Forests

June 27, 2011

What are the plants, animals, fungi, and microbes that make up a forest? How do they interact? How do forests respond to climate, introduced species, land development, and other environmental change? Harvard Museum of Natural History’s exhibit, New England Forests answers all of these questions and more. Visitors will be able to explore three distinct New England forest landscapes, complete with flora and fauna. The goals of the exhibition are to enhance public understanding of the dynamic and varied nature of our forests and initiate public conversation about their use, conservation, and management.

Charles Darwin’s Twitter

June 13, 2011

Now you can follow Charles Darwin's every move on the Beagle via Twitter! The account, which is now nearly 2000 tweets strong, posts one liners from Darwin's diary kept on his journey aboard the HMS Beagle. The tweets are posted on the corresponding day that Darwin wrote the words in his diary, 176 years ago. Geotagging has been enabled for tweets that include a location, so you can see exactly where Darwin was at that particular moment. The account is maintained by an avid Darwin fan with the intent of exposing a new audience to “the humour, insight and imagination of the young Darwin as he begins to think about the marvellous, curious, and unexplained world he is circumnavigating.”

Greenscapes Massachusetts

May 20, 2011

Greenscapes Massachusetts is a multi-partner outreach effort that promotes water conservation and protection. Approximately half of the program is funded by the 40 municipalities that are served by the program. Every other spring, members of the Greenscapes Coalition produce a 20-page Resource Guide with information ranging from how to build rain gardens, to a beautiful way to clean and recycle stormwater, to pesticide alternatives that help prevent your lawn from becoming dependent on chemicals.

Friends of the Urban Forest

April 25, 2011

This year Friends of the Urban Forest, (FUF) celebrates 30 years of helping individuals and neighborhood groups plant and care for street trees and sidewalk gardens in San Francisco. Each year FUF provides financial, technical, and practical assistance and works with community members to plant more than 1,000 trees. In San Francisco, in most cases, property owners are responsible, by law, for care of adjoining street trees. FUF’s Tree Care program helps these trees survive and thrive.

Commemorating Naturalists

April 11, 2011

Richard Conniff, author of The Species Seekers: Heroes, Fools, and the Mad Pursuit of Life on Earth is assembling a commemorative list of naturalists who have died while engaged in their scientific endeavors. This Wall of the Dead includes such recent tragedies as the murder of Leonardo Co (1953-2010) the Filipino botanist who, along with two assistants, was shot down while collecting seedlings of endangered trees in what the military claimed was a gun battle with rebel forces and California Academy of Sciences herpetologist Joseph Slowinski (1962–2001) who died by snakebite during the Academy’s biological expedition to northern Myanmar. Harvard’s David Boufford was one of the team members on this multidisciplinary expedition. The cause of some deaths, like John Lawson’s (1674-1711) Surveyor General of North Carolina and author of A New Voyage to Carolina who was executed on September 20, 1711 by the Tuskarora Indians are well documented, while other far more recent ones such as Frank Meyer’s (1875–1918) plant explorer for the USDA and Arnold Arboretum remain a mystery.

The People’s Garden Initiative

March 28, 2011

The People’s Garden Initiative, established in 2009 by the USDA challenges its employees to create gardens that are sustainable, benefit their communities, and are made through collaborative efforts. A partnership between USDA and Keep America Beautiful has resulted in over 1,230 People’s Gardens throughout the country teaching others how to nurture, maintain, and protect a healthy landscape.

Smokey Mountains

March 14, 2011

Working in collaboration with The University of Tennessee Libraries, the Arnold Arboretum Horticultural Library contributed to the Great Smoky Mountains Regional Project by providing access to album of historic images held in the Archives. The images in Views in The Great Smoky Mountains National Park are by the Thompson Brothers. The album’s provenance maybe surmised by its dedication.

America’s Great Outdoors

February 28, 2011

In April 2010, President Obama established the America’s Great Outdoor Initiative to develop a conservation and recreation agenda worthy of the 21st century. The President directed the Secretaries of Interior and Agriculture, Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, and Chair of the Council on Environmental Quality to lead this effort. During 2010, “Listening Sessions” were held coast to coast to listen and learn from people all over the country. You too can Submit Your Ideas & Join the Conversation, Share Your Story, or discover a list of resources to inspire you to Get Outdoors.

The Chocolate Connection

February 15, 2011

For a very special treat we invite you to immerse yourself in an online delight where Anna Heran, curator of the exhibit at the Lloyd Library and Museum, has created a banquet for chocolate lovers by bringing together Sloane’s medicinal interest in Theobroma cacao after being introduced to it as a drink in Jamaica, and the cultural and economic history chocolate has played both in the Americas and Europe.

New York City Parks

January 30, 2011

New York City has more than 1,700 parks, playgrounds and recreational facilities and The Daily Plant, a newsletter produced each business day details parks events, programs, and accomplishments. You can Explore Your Park, or see its monuments before you go. Learn about and see park history. If you want to know about the city’s landscape architect visit to European parks you can read Samuel Parson’s (1844-1923) nine page 1906 Report to the New York City Park Board online or to just learn about New York City Trees check out this book.

The American Chestnut Foundation

January 15, 2011

Since its inception in 1983, the goal of The American Chestnut Foundation has been restore the American chestnut tree to its native range within the eastern United States. Ongoing research to breed blight resistance is based in Virginia. The Foundation has also partnered with the Appalachian Regional Reforestation Initiative to plant American chestnuts on reclaimed surface mines. Volunteers are needed to help locate, pollinate, and harvest nuts from native American chestnut trees. Learn more in their Field Guide, in the Journal of the American Chestnut Foundation, or in Mighty Giants: An American Chestnut Anthology, a history of The American Chestnut Foundation.


Norman B. Leventhal Map Collection (NBLMC)

December 10, 2010

The Norman B. Leventhal Map Collection (NBLMC) at Boston Public Library was founded in 2004 as a public/private partnership to bring the BPL’s extensive map collection to the public through education, preservation of materials and digitization. The digitized maps available on their website include many maps of the Boston area and even some of the Arnold Arboretum, as well as maps old and new from around the world.

Gerry Wright as Frederick Law Olmsted

The Svalbard Global Seed Vault

November 15, 2010

Svalbard Global Seed Vault, which opened in 2007 and is located in the northernmost part of Norway, stores duplicates of seeds from gene banks around the world. If seeds are ever lost, they may be reestablished from the collection at Svalbard. The vault is an almost entirely underground facility, blasted out of the permafrost, and designed to store up to 2.25 billion seeds. The facility is designed to have an almost “endless” lifetime.

have you seen this?


October 12, 2010

i-Tree is a state-of-the-art, peer-reviewed software suite from the USDA Forest Service that provides urban forestry analysis and benefits assessment tools. The i-Tree Tools help communities of all sizes to strengthen their urban forest management and advocacy efforts by quantifying the structure of community trees and the environmental services that trees provide. Numerous communities, non-profit organizations, consultants, volunteers and students have used i-Tree to report on individual trees, parcels, neighborhoods, cities, and even entire states. By understanding the local, tangible ecosystem services that trees provide, i-Tree users can link urban forest management activities with environmental quality and community livability.