Events

Upcoming Events

See all of our tour and class listings.

Viewing Events from May 21, 2019 to June 20, 2019

Ethnobotany at Harvard

Ethnobotany at Harvard

John de la Parra, PhD, Associate, Harvard University Herbarium and Ethnobotanist
1 Session: Wednesday, May 22, 12:00–2:00pm..pm

Historically, plants have provided humans with most of our drugs, fibers, food, dyes, perfumes, building materials, and even musical instruments. But how has this diverse and fascinating field been studied and what has been learned? In fact, for over 100 years, Harvard has played a pivotal role in the study of human-plant interactions, leading to the creation of the field of ethnobotany. In this interactive lecture we will explore the science and history of some of the most important Harvard botanists and explorers through their unique specimens – now housed in the Harvard University Herbarium.

Fee $20 member, $30 nonmember

Register at my.arboretum.harvard.edu or call 617-384-5277.

Guided Weekday Tour

Weekday Guided Tours: May, June, September, and October

Arboretum Docents
Mondays and Thursdays, 10:30am-noon

No tours Monday, May 27, Mon. Sept. 2, Mon. Oct. 7
Location: Hunnewell Building

Weekday guided tours are Mondays and Thursdays in May, June, September and October. Join one of our docents for a weekday tour from 10:30am to noon. Meet at the Hunnewell Building and enjoy a walk, learning about the highlights of Arboretum history, the collections, and seasonal interest.

In case of inclement weather, contact 617.384.5209.
These walks are free, no need to register.
Bonsai and Penjing Open Pavilion

Bonsai and Penjing Pavilion Open House

Arboretum Volunteers

Select Thursdays and Sundays, May and June, see calendar, 11:00am-1:00pm

Lilac Sunday, May 12, 10am-3pm, staff and volunteers on hand in the Pavilion

Location: Bonsai and Penjing Pavilion (at the top of the Leventritt Shrub and Vine Garden)
You are invited inside our Bonsai and Penjing Pavilion to hear volunteers talk about the care, history, and unique stories of these dwarfed potted plants. The Bonsai and Penjing Pavilion is available for viewing from the outside daily from 8:00am-3:45pm.

For cancellations due to weather, please call 617 384-5209

Free

Forest Bathing

Saturday Forest Bathing

2nd & 4th Saturdays in April and May, 9:00am-11:00am
Tam Willey, Certified Forest Therapy Guide
Location: Bussey St. Gate Entrance at map tables

Forest Bathing is inspired by Shinrin-yoku, a prominent feature of preventative medicine and healing in Japan.  From increased cerebral blood flow to stronger immune defenses, there has been extensive research demonstrating what can happen when we relax, unplug and open our senses to the natural world in community.  

This slow-paced guided therapeutic experience promotes wellness through a series of gentle sensory-opening invitations that welcome us to notice more of our natural surroundings.  By deepening our connection with the natural world and each other, we open ourselves up to the healing medicine of the forest.  Forest Bathing is part of a global effort to tend to the stressful conditions of living in modern industrialized civilization.  

Tam is a Certified Forest Therapy Guide, Training Apprentice and Mentor with the Association of Nature and Forest Therapy Guides and Programs. Tam believes the practice of Forest Bathing can deepen and broaden our relationships. Tam’s training includes an understanding of the scientific framework of Forest Therapy as well as the cultural repair that is made possible by holding space for seekers of this medicine to share and bear witness in community as part of the natural world.  Tam created Toadstool Walks as a way to offer support in finding one’s own way towards experiencing belonging to the natural world.

For more information about Tam, check out ToadstoolWalks.com


Fee $25 member, $35 nonmember
Register at my.arboretum.harvard.edu or call 617-384-5209

In case of inclement weather, contact 617.304.9313

Guided Saturday Tour

Saturday Guided Tours

Arboretum Docents
10:30am-Noon; 1:00-2:30pm tours on select May Saturdays, see our calendar
Location: Hunnewell Building unless otherwise specified

Enjoy a free guided tour of the Arnold Arboretum landscape with a knowledgeable docent. Tours are appropriate for adults and last approximately 90 minutes. Landscape highlights, seasonal interest, history, and more. If you have a group of four or fewer persons, you are welcome to join. For a group of more than four, please request a private tour.

In case of inclement weather, contact 617.384.5209. 

These walks are free, no need to register.
Guided Sunday Tour

Sunday Guided Tours

Arboretum Docents
1:00pm-2:30pm; Tours on Lilac Sunday: 11am-2:45pm; additional 10:30am-noon tours in May, see our calendar
Location: Hunnewell Building unless otherwise specified

Enjoy a free guided tour of the Arnold Arboretum landscape with a knowledgeable docent. Tours are appropriate for adults and last approximately 90 minutes. Landscape highlights, seasonal interest, history, and more. If you have a group of four or fewer persons, you are welcome to join. For a group of more than four, please request a private tour.

In case of inclement weather, contact 617.384.5209. 

These walks are free, no need to register.
Dissection Dramatics! - Flower Form

Dissection Dramatics! - Flower Form

Arnold Arboretum Staff and Volunteers
2:00pm-4:00pm 
Sunday, May 26 2019
Location: Hunnewell Lawn 

This is part of the new Science in Our Park Series. Come to the Arnold Arboretum and be a scientist! Get your hands onto scientific tools, use your observation skills and share your findings with others.

Dissection Dramatics will give you ample opportunity to fiddle with microscopes, hand lenses and digital scopes. Discover the secrets contained in a flower as you pull it apart piece by piece. Then test your puzzle making abilities as you attempt to put it back together.

One adult may bring a maximum of three children; suitable for children ages five and up. This is a drop in activity. The event will be taking place on the Hunnewell Lawn inside the main entrance to the Arnold Arboretum.

In case of inclement weather, contact 617.384.5209.

Plants Go to War: A Botanical History of World War II

Plants Go to War: A Botanical History of World War II

Judith Sumner, PhD, Author and Botanist
1 Session: Date to be Determined
Location: Hunnewell Building

NOTE: We are postponing this lecture as the book has been delayed at the publishing house. We will reschedule as soon as we have a firm date.

As the first botanical history of World War II, Plants Go to War examines military history from the perspective of plant science. From victory gardens to drugs, timber, rubber, and fibers, plants supplied materials with key roles in victory. Author and botanist Judith Sumner will speak of the many plants that were incorporated into wartime safety materials, diet and rations, and even bombers.

Fee Free, but registration requested

Register at my.arboretum.harvard.edu or call 617-384-5277.

Tour: Arboretum June Birding!

June Birding

Brendan Keegan, Arboretum Gardener

Sunday, June 1, 8:00-9:30am, meet at Arborway Gate and Sunday June 23, 8:00-9:30am, meet at Bussey Street Gate
Join the Arnold Arboretum's Brendan Keegan for an easy walk looking for June birds.

All skill levels, especially beginners, are encouraged to join. Bring binoculars, and a few binoculars will be available to share.

See our website for directions and a checklist of birds. Parking is along the Arborway or Bussey Street, or take the T to Forest Hills and walk. Meet inside the Gates.

In case of inclement weather, contact 617.384.5209.


Free, registration requested at my.arboretum.harvard.edu

Arboretum for Educators

Arboretum for Educators

Monthly: Select Saturdays, 9:00–11:30am
Location: Hunnewell Building

Arboretum for Educators monthly explorations are a professional development opportunity for elementary and middle school teachers to introduce the Arboretum landscape as an outdoor classroom. Participants learn about specific hands-on life science topics that may be used or adapted by teachers for their own classrooms and outdoor spaces. Meet and network with other like-minded educators, and engage in life science learning.

Free, but registration requested

View a printable 2018-2019 schedule.


Identifying Ferns of the Arnold Arboretum

Identifying Ferns of the Arnold Arboretum

Jacob Suissa, Fellow, Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University
1 Session: Saturday, June 1, 9:30am–12:30pm
Location: Weld Hill Research Building and Arboretum Landscape

Considering its size and location New England has a relatively rich flora of ferns and fern allies (clubmosses, spikemosses, and quillworts). While it is possible to see almost all these species somewhere in the state of Massachusetts, several can be found at the Arnold Arboretum. Fern specialist Jacob Suissa will teach the anatomy, reproduction, and key identifying characters that will help you to identify the ferns and fern allies of the Arboretum and New England. Participants will begin indoors at the Arboretum’s Weld Hill Research Building with a lecture and then move outdoors to Hemlock Hill and Bussey Brook for a fern foray. Dress for indoor and outdoor learning.
Fee $40 member, $50 nonmember

Register at my.arboretum.harvard.edu or call 617-384-5277.

Collections Up Close - Ginkgo Collection

Collections Up Close - Ginkgo Collection

Arnold Arboretum Staff and Volunteers
1:00pm-3:00pm 
Sunday, June 2 2019
Location: Peters Hill - Ginkgo Collection (near Mendum St. Gate) 

Celebrate plant diversity, natural history, and the work of public gardens by spotlighting plants and their families. Join us for tours, family activities and festivities in the ginkgo collection on Peters Hill. Most people can identify a ginkgo leaf – but what do you really know about the tree itself? Come learn more about this “living fossil” and explore a collection that reflects the greatest known genetic diversity of wild-collected ginkgos in North America.

This is a drop in activity. The event will be taking place in the ginkgo collection on Peters Hill. Street parking is available on Bussey Street.

In case of inclement weather, contact 617.384.5209.

Greenhouses' tour: From Seed to Tree

From Seed to Tree

Dana Greenhouses' Staff
First Tuesday of the month, May through October, 1:00pm-1:45pm.

Did you know that almost all of the plants in the Arboretum begin their lives in the Dana Greenhouses? Get a behind-the-scenes look of the greenhouse growing process, from seed to sprout to seedling to tree. Meet at the Bonsai and Penjing Collection above the Leventritt Shrub & Vine Garden. There is a 15 person maximum. Free, registration requested and limited
Register online at my.arboretum.harvard.edu or call 617-384-5209.
Compost Compendium

Compost Compendium

Conor Guidarelli, Horticulturist, Arnold Arboretum
1 Session: Thursday, June 6, 6:00–8:00pm
Location: Hunnewell Building and Landscape

Horticulturist Conor Guidarelli manages the Arnold Arboretum’s organic materials recycling area and has recently improved the production and quality of the resulting compost. Conor will discuss the components of compost and the nutrients that can be returned to a site when compost is applied. He will explain the mix of brown to green materials, moisture, and aeration. Class participants will start in the classroom and then travel to the Arboretum’s materials yard to see compost in various stages of development.

Fee $20 member, $30 nonmember

Register at my.arboretum.harvard.edu or call 617-384-5277.

Walk From Obesity

Walk From Obesity


9:00-10:00am walk from Center Street Gate in the Arnold Arboretum

Saturday, June 8, 2019

Please join in for the 5th Annual Walk from Obesity, hosted by the Brigham and Women’s Center for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery and Massachusetts General Hospital Weight Center. The Walk is meant to raise money and awareness of this growing obesity epidemic, and the need for increased access to treatment. Check in 8:00-9:00am. For information go to: Walk from Obesity
Tour The Family Rosaceae: Roses in Bloom

Rose Family in Bloom

Marty Amdur, Arboretum Docent
Sunday, June 9, 11:00am-12:30pm
Location: Bradley Rosaceous Collection/Map Table
The rose family (Rosaceae) contains over 3,000 species of trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants. Roses, spireas, mountain ash, and many more are at peak bloom in June. You will be surprised by the beauty, breadth, and depth of the Bradley Rosaceous Collection (BRC), and the Arboretum's role in discovering and disseminating understanding of this large family of plants.

For cancellations due to weather, call 617 384-5209

Free, registration is requested at my.arboretum.harvard.edu

Growing Woody Plants from Softwood Cuttings

Growing Woody Plants from Softwood Cuttings

Tiffany Enzenbacher, Manager of Plant Production Arnold Arboretum
1 Session: Wednesday, June 12, 5:30–7:30pm
Location: Dana Greenhouse

Hydrangea and Cherry and Willow, oh my! Join Manager of Plant Production Tiffany Enzenbacher to learn how to propagate woody plants from summer cuttings. Students will collect and stick cuttings of several landscape plants. Cuttings will be rooted at the greenhouse to be retrieved later for transplanting into the registrant’s garden or potted up into small containers. Fee for all materials is included in the cost of the class. Students should bring their own pruners and dress for the weather. Limited to 10; register early.

Fee $36 member, $45 nonmember

Register at my.arboretum.harvard.edu or call 617-384-5277.

Tour: Revisiting Plants from the Bulletin of Popular Information

Walking Postscript: Revisiting Plants from the Bulletin of Popular Information

Jonathan Damery, Associate Editor, Arnoldia

Thursday, June 13, 4:00pm-5:30pm
Location: Hunnewell Building
In 1911, Charles Sprague Sargent, the founding director of the Arnold Arboretum, began writing a serialized pamphlet titled the Bulletin of Popular Information, in which he described flowering and fruiting displays at the Arboretum. Because Sargent often focused on plants newly arrived from expeditions to Asia and elsewhere, many of his descriptions provided the first horticultural comparisons between species that had never been grown in the same garden. On this tour, Damery will revisit plants mentioned throughout Sargent's sixteen years with the Bulletin, comparing the young plants in Sargent's descriptions to the venerable specimens they have become. Special consideration will be paid to plant phenology, examining whether climate change has caused the plants to flower earlier than Sargent noted.  In case of inclement weather, contact 617.384.5209.

Free, registration requested.
Tour: Medicinal Plants at the Arboretum

Medicinal Plants at the Arnold Arboretum: An Exploration of the Wild and Cultivated Remedies Growing Beneath our Feet

John de la Parra, Associate, Harvard University Herbaria
Ernest Anemone, JD Lecturer, Tufts University
Saturday, June 15, 1:00-2:30pm
The Leventritt Shrub and Vine Garden contains a multitude of cultivated plants with culturally significant medicinal properties. However, on a casual stroll along Linden Path to the Leventritt, you will pass dozens of other plants that are often looked upon as simple weeds. Many of these plants have rich ethnobotanical histories of their own that tie us closer to our environment. Your guides will explain how these "weedy" plants came to colonize this area while touching on cultural contexts and botanical identification of these wild species—as well as the cultivated medicinal species in the Leventritt Shrub and Vine Garden.

In case of inclement weather, contact 617.384.5209.

Free, registration requested.
Family Hike: Insect Safari

Family Hike: Pollinators

Nancy Sableski, Manager of Children's Education
Sunday, June 16, 2:00-3:30pm
Location: Hunnewell Building

Families need nature at all times of the year! Meet inside the main gate at the Visitor Center. We’ll use nets and bug boxes to find insects in the meadow and the woods. Go on a StoryWalk, get a tattoo, and look at insects under microscopes! Free and open to all, most suitable for children ages four through ten.



In case of inclement weather, contact 617.384.5209.