Arboretums, according to Penn State, cultivate trees, shrubs and herbaceous plants for scientific and educational purposes. But these Philadelphia-area attractions are so much more to the residents and tourists who visit them each year. Early botanical gardens and arboretums were cultivated for the study of medicinal plants and trees and to display and classify plants and trees discovered on journeys and voyages to other lands. The arboretums listed here, in addition to their importance to science and education, also serve as venues for special events, stunning backdrops for wedding photos and as destinations for those who love spending time in nature, among beautiful gardens, rich with history and color.
In Philadelphia’s historic Germantown neighborhood, the Awbury Arboretum, once home to an extended Quaker family, is rich with history and 55 acres of vibrant landscape. For nearly a century, this urban oasis has served the residents and visitors to northwest Philadelphia as a park and arboretum, open to the public free of charge. The arboretum offers field study programs for children, classes and events open to the community and historical collections available for viewing on the first floor of the Francis Cope House, the arboretum’s historical mansion that serves as the administrative building.
In Devon, Pennsylvania, just outside of Philadelphia, this 46-acre property is designated as a “public park, arboretum and wildlife sanctuary for the study of arboriculture, horticulture and wildlife for educational and scientific purposes.” Pay it a visit and learn something new.
Longwood Gardens is located near Philadelphia in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania. With 1,050 acres and 20 indoor and 20 outdoor garden areas, Longwood Gardens is a popular destination for tourists and residents alike, offering programs and events throughout the year with thousands flocking to the gardens during the holidays to enjoy spectacular displays. The venue features musical and theatre performances, classes and workshops, fine and casual dining, programs for families and children and a spectacular display of lights and holiday-themed displays each year.
Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania
This arboretum boasts just under 100 acres of winding paths, streams and gardens, including a Victorian landscape garden and dozens of special and interactive displays and events throughout the year. Located near Chestnut Hill College, Morris Arboretum is an historic public garden and educational institution that uses programs that integrate science, the humanities and art to nurture visitors’ understanding of the relationship between people and nature.
Scott Arboretum, 300 acres featuring more than 4,000 types of ornamental plants, is located in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania. As part of the campus of Swarthmore College, this arboretum is open daily to visitors, students and members. The arboretum’s offices house a collection of 1,300 garden-related books, as well as related newsletters, magazines, catalogs and more.
Dating back to the days of William Penn, Tyler Arboretum serves the greater Philadelphia area as a treasure of natural lands, preserved for the education and study of horticulture. Vibrant in the springtime with colorful blooms dripping from every tree, the arboretum boasts exquisite exhibits of heritage magnolias, hollies, lilacs, crabapples and cherries. The venue also features several habitat-based displays including a bird garden, a meadow maze and a native woodland walk.You May Also Be Interested In These Stories
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Christy Ayala covers sports, recreation, the outdoors, and leisure activities in the Philadelphia area. She earned a masters degree in recreation administration from George Williams College and managed programs in the Midwest, Hawaii, and Pennsylvania. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.