Collection Statistics

Collection Statistics

Living Collections

As of January 2019, the living collections comprised 16,237 individual plants (including nursery holdings) belonging to 10,861 accessions representing 3,797 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 109
Genera 372
Species 2,143
Subspecies 103
Varieties 323
Formae 64
Cultivars 1,421
Infraspecific Hybrids 432
Intergeneric Hybrids 13

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 3,055 28
Indirecta 883 8
Garden 2,968 27
Uncertainb 3,955 37

aFrom a cultivated plant of known (indirect) wild origin.
bIncludes 2,710 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 (e.g., seed, graft, cutting) 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 October 2018, the legacy collections comprised 68,714 accessions representing 17,130 taxa. Of these, 66,208 individual plants (including nursery holdings) belonging to 44,306 accessions representing 13,181 taxa were inventoried within the living collections before perishing.

Table 3. Taxonomic profile of the Legacy Collections of the Arnold Arboretum.a
RANK NUMBER
Families  212
Genera  1,172
Species  9,826
Subspecies  278
Varieties  1,487
Formae  284
Cultivars  6,412
Infraspecific Hybrids  1,481
Intergeneric Hybrids  98

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

Table 4. Provenance of the Legacy Accessions of the Arnold Arboretum.
PROVENANCE TOTAL NUMBER PERCENT OF TOTAL
Wild
Direct  14,129  21
Indirecta  4,009  6
Garden  19,051  28
Uncertainb  31,525  45

aFrom a cultivated plant of known (indirect) wild origin.
bIncludes 1,446 existing or spontaneous accessions whose provenance cannot be determined.