Collection Statistics

Collection Statistics

Living Collections

As of July 2020, the living collections (includes nursery holdings) comprise 16,978 individual plants belonging to 11,038 accessions representing 3,850 taxa. Of these, 15,458 individual plants belonging to 10,303 accessions representing 3,674 taxa constitute the permanent collections (excludes nursery holdings).

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 (Includes Nursery Holdings) of the Arnold Arboretum.a
RANK NUMBER
Families 112
Genera 396
Species 2,189
Subspecies 104
Varieties 328
Formae 65
Cultivars 1,426
Infraspecific Hybrids 431
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 (Includes Nursery Holdings) of the Arnold Arboretum.
PROVENANCE TOTAL NUMBER PERCENT OF TOTAL
Wild
  Direct 3,260 29
  Indirecta 907 8
Garden 2,974 27
Uncertainb 3,897 36

aFrom a cultivated plant of known (indirect) wild origin.
bIncludes 2,786 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 July 2020, the legacy collections comprised 76,638 accessions representing 18,394 taxa. Of these, 67,043 individual plants belonging to 44,717 accessions representing 13,267 taxa were inventoried within the living collections (includes nursery holdings) before perishing.

Table 3. Taxonomic profile of the Legacy (Dead) Collections of the Arnold Arboretum.a
RANK NUMBER
Families  220
Genera  1,266
Species  10,296
Subspecies  298
Varieties  1,524
Formae  291
Cultivars  7,083
Infraspecific Hybrids  1,533
Intergeneric Hybrids  99

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

Table 4. Provenance of the Legacy (Dead) Accessions of the Arnold Arboretum.
PROVENANCE TOTAL NUMBER PERCENT OF TOTAL
Wild
  Direct  14,829  19
  Indirecta  4,363  6
Garden  22,835  30
Uncertainb  34,611  45

aFrom a cultivated plant of known (indirect) wild origin.
bIncludes 1,504 existing or spontaneous accessions whose provenance cannot be determined.