The Pennsylvania Flora Project is a field and herbarium-based study of the native and naturalized plants of the state. A comprehensive database tracks changes (www.paflora.org). Plant health and pest management examines ecologically sound controls. Research publications include The Plants of Pennsylvania, The Trees of Pennsylvania and The Aquatic Plants of Pennsylvania. Plant exploration, evaluation and introduction focuses on plants for urban environments and species of special horticultural interest, with a focus on eastern Asia, Pennsylvania, and eastern North America.
Botanical research focuses on the floristics of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and includes biological inventories, ecological studies, and plant systematic studies. Since 1933, Arboretum botanists have studied and documented the plant resources of Pennsylvania. Arboretum staff provide services to many Commonwealth agencies, conservationists, land planners and managers, as well as amateur and professional students of botany.
One of the best known aspects of the Arboretum’s horticultural research program is plant exploration, which has resulted in more than 20 expeditions since the late 1970s. The results of these expeditions have greatly enhanced the living collection with approximately one-third of the Arboretum’s plants of wild-collected and documented origin.
One of the primary functions of these exploration and propagation efforts is to serve as a conduit to provide rare and unusual plants to horticulturalist plant breeders and gardeners. The Arboretum is distinguished from many other public gardens in the area by having a full-time propagator, propagation intern, and facilities dedicated to growing and evaluating the results of these collecting efforts. An outcome of these propagation efforts is the distribution of plants to a diverse group of botanic gardens and private individuals.
Unfortunately, due to inclement weather, Holiday Garden Railway trains are not running.
The Garden Railway will not be operational from 2:00 PM Friday (July 19) through the weekend (July 20-21). The trains will open for normal operation on Monday, July 22nd. Our Train Master reported that the trains will not operate in the excessive heat, citing electrical, track and rolling stock failures.
The Arboretum is open as usual. Click here for hours.
Garden Railway trains are not running Saturday, September 8th and Sunday, September 9th due to inclement weather.
Please note: The Rose Garden is closed for maintenance every Thursday morning until noon.
Weather conditions may limit garden access to certain features even if the garden is open – please check the web site or call (215) 247-5777 for updates before visiting. Our visitors’ safety in the garden is our top priority. Therefore when inclement weather is predicted, we will make decisions about closing the garden accordingly.