Garden & Spaces

Arboretum Destinations

The Arboretum’s 155 acres are home to a number of managed native gardens, ponds teeming with wildlife, and beautiful spaces to relax and take in nature.


Pollinator Garden

Soak up the beauty all around as you explore the Pollinator Garden. The native plants found growing here are favorites of pollinators like bees, butterflies, and birds. Look for signs along the path to help you identify the plants and the pollinators they attract.

Display Walk

Bursting with colorful blooms and tall grasses, the Display Walk showcases a variety of native plants year-round. Take a stroll down the path to observe the diversity of our native flora cared for by the Arboretum’s Conservation Team and volunteers.


Cypress Pond

Named for the cypress trees found growing in the water, the Cypress Pond is a small, quiet pond positioned along the edge of the Event Lawn. Look for the roots of the cypress trees, called “knees”, protruding out of the water.

North Woodway Pond

Created to help with runoff reclamation, the ponds in the Woodway Parking Loop help to clean and store water used for irrigation during dry spells. Take a moment on the bridge to observe the water below. What do you see hiding among the plants?

South Woodway Pond

Nestled between the Woodway Parking Loop and the savanna, the South Woodway Pond is teeming with aquatic plants and wildlife. Green treefrogs hide among the pickerelweed leaves while snakes, turtles, and other aquatic animals swim in the water. This is the best pond to see aquatic birds like herons and kingfishers.

Lily Pond

Spatterdock and lizard tail grow abundantly in this small wetland pond. Located right behind the Nature Center building, it is great place to spot water snakes, turtles, bullfrogs, and herons.

Arrowwood Pond

Loblolly pine trees growing several stories tall create a shaded canopy over the Arrowwood Pond. As the pine needles fall into the water, they release tannins that result in the tea-colored water you see. Have a seat on the benches and watch for bullfrogs and snapping turtles resting in the sunny spots.


Bursting with biodiversity, this wetland area is a popular place to search for reptiles, amphibians, birds, and insects. Look for tadpoles and mosquito fish swimming in the water and watch for dragonflies zipping overhead. Keep an eye out for raccoon and swamp rabbit tracks in the muddy edges of the pond.

Meadow Pond

The largest of the Arboretum’s ponds, this destination spot offers several decks where visitors can sit and enjoy the natural world. Prairie ponds are crucial habitats for many species of animals including migratory birds and dragonflies. The fallen trees in the pond are a great place to look for turtles basking in the sun.

Willow Oak Pond

This small, shaded pond offers a quiet place to sit amongst the trees. Listen for frogs leaping into the water and squirrels scurrying nearby.


Event Lawn

The largest maintained lawn on site, the Event Lawn is a frequent destination for Children’s Programs, special events, and weddings. When it’s not in use, this green space is a wonderful place to sit and enjoy nature.

Emmott Circle

The remarkable efforts of Catharine Mary Emmott resulted in the creation of Memorial Park and the Arboretum. This outdoor classroom named in her honor offers a shaded place to sit as well as three bird drips to attract wildlife.

Lily Pond Courtyard

Located directly behind the building, this small courtyard offers a place for visitors to sit and relax before heading out on the trails. The outdoor bathrooms and water fountain are located nearby at the Nature Center building.

Nature Center Courtyard

Surrounded by our beautiful Pollinator Garden, the Nature Center Courtyard is a great place to begin your hike. The Courtyard Lawn, Nature Center building, and Playscape are nearby for quick access.

Nature Center Lawn

Conveniently located by the Nature Center building, the lawn is a wonderful place to sit, relax, and enjoy the day. Both the Nature Center Lawn and Courtyard are available for rentals!

North Meadow Deck

Situated between the prairie and the woodland habitats, the Meadow Pond provides an important water source for many animals. Have a seat and enjoy the quiet sounds of nature.

Meadow Deck

The elevated Meadow Deck is the perfect place to relax and observe nature. Search the prairie pond for basking turtles, dancing dragonflies, and birds flying overhead.

South Meadow Deck

From the South Meadow Trail, take a break on this small deck to relax and observe the Meadow Pond. What organisms do you see in the water?

Ravine Platform

Trek down the steps of the Ravine Trail to the platform below to get a closer view of the ravine. Plants found growing here, like ebony spleenwort, black elderberry, and dwarf palmettos prefer the damp soils of the riparian habitat. Armadillo burrows can be found throughout the slopes of the ravine.

Photo credit Anthony Rathbun, Charles Mayer Photography, Brandon Huttenlocher / Design Workshop, Inc, Arboretum Staff

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