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view of a pond at Morris Arboretum

Morris Arboretum's Natural Areas Section Leader

ryan drake

Welcome Ryan Drake, the Morris Arboretum's new Natural Areas Section Leader!

Ryan's experience is in ecological horticulture and has been working in public gardens and arboreta for over six years. He is passionate about designing, managing, and educating communities around ecological horticulture and landscapes. He has designed and led capital expansion projects at the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden and has gardened at Allen Centennial Garden of the University of Wisconsin – Madison and the University of Wisconsin – Madison Arboretum. He has also conducted invasive plant management at James Cook University in Queensland, Australia. He is involved and interested in pollination ecology and has worked to support native bees and beekeeping in Iowa legislature, working groups, citizen science, and education. Ryan’s favorite place in the Morris Arboretum is the Wetlands where you can find him among the native plants and bees.