The trees, shrubs and vines grown at the Arnold Arboretum—the living collection—is celebrated as one of the most comprehensive and best documented natural history collections of its kind. Rich holdings include temperate woody plants from around the world, with a particularly strong representation of the floras of the eastern United States and eastern Asia. Visit different areas of interest in the landscape, from microclimate hills to brooks to scenic overlooks of the Boston skyline. This 281-acre jewel in Olmsted’s Emerald Necklace of parklands is both a research center and museum of Harvard University and a beloved public landscape open free to the public every day.


Bussey Hill in Spring

Featured Plants & Areas of Interest

Plants are starting to break out of dormancy. Fresh green leaves are beginning to emerge and early blossoms brighten the landscape. Look for magnolia flowers, cherries, forsythia, early azaleas, redbud, maples, Japanese andromeda, winterhazel, and many more.

Guided Tours

See how much the Arboretum has to offer when you tour the landscape with one of our knowledgeable docents or expert staff. Tours are free and open to the public, and cover different areas of the collections and landscape. Starting on Saturday, April 14 regular landscape tours resume.  These tours take place every Saturday at 10:30am and Sunday at 1:00pm. See the calendar for all upcoming tours.

Sargent Cherry Prunus sargentii 'Columnaris' 931-51-B

Tree of the Month

Check out April’s Tree of the Month, Prunus spp. (cherry) [pdf], a genus that includes multiple species that bloom at various times throughout the month. Use your mobile device to search our interactive digital map, ArbExplorer, to locate Prunus  in our landscape.


Propagation Exhibit

Visitor Center

Stop by the Visitor Center (located in the Hunnewell Building) and learn more about the Arboretum’s collections, history and events. Need advice on where to explore?  There are friendly and experienced Visitor Engagement Staff on hand to suggest walking routes, answer questions, and share their knowledge about the Arboretum. This month take a look at our propagation exhibit and learn about the history of our greenhouses.

Classes and Lectures

Hear renowned speakers discuss topics, participate in stimulating discussions, and gain insight into some of the most fascinating areas of science, horticulture, landscape design and ecology. Prefer a more hands-on experience? Register for a class or workshop and learn how to prune a plant, grow a mushroom, or upgrade your home garden. See the calendar for upcoming classes and lectures.

Magnolia acuminata fruit

Art at the Arboretum

Close and Closer
by James Reis

Like Boston, the Arnold Arboretum is a diverse tapestry that comes together and creates a whole. Walkways flow from side roads to manicured trails to hidden paths revealing secret glades. If the visitor is not in a rush, the Arboretum offers enchanting micro environments that invite even closer inspection. Join photographer James Reis on his journey through the Arboretum by way of images, both unique and close up, in this new exhibition. “No two days are the same,” says Reis “between the angle of the sun, the weather, and the many spots where we become delightfully stuck. While my lens is a frail approximation of eye and heart, it pulls me out the door and into the delicate realms of plant, fungi, insect, and seed.”–close and then closer.

On display in the Hunnewell Lecture Hall February 9 through May 6, 2018.

All art shows are free and open to the public. The Lecture Hall is also used for lectures, programs, meetings, and school groups, so please call 617.384.5209 for exhibition availability.