"Perserve, Protect, Enhance and Educate"

Botanical Society of ZooMontana

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J A N U A R Y   2 0 1 9
"The Tree Geek Edition"

 Determining the benefits of trees

Not for Everyone

Caution ! If you don't like really boring arboriculture kinda stuff then this newsletter isn't for you. It has a lot of geeky numbers and sleepy time information. But to "tree guys" it is a really special time at the arboretum seeing all this information overload. Lots of numbers and mind-boggling graphs, but that's what arboretums do. So see what we're doing below and take a "walk on the wild side" 


With the abundant information being generated by the Arboretum Inventory Project we've had to expand the arboretum website. By creating this site it will contain all the numbers and records needed and still keep the integrity of the existing Botanical Society website. Look for an e-mail blast when the site is live.

The new site will have the basic information on the arboretum status for visitors with photos, areas to visit, admission and opening hours. The expansion contains a complete inventory of present and past specimens with links to current individual tree pages. It will also have interactive maps that allows visitors to click on any tree location to get an up close and personal look at the tree inventory pages. The site will be set-up for mobile use for smart phones that visitors can access while at the arboretum.

These pages include a lot of information:

1) Common name heading with accession number, map location and GPS location

2) Complete accession information with common name, family name, latin name and plant history

3) Photos of current tree (new pics coming in spring) and bark study

4) Photo of leaf specimen. Any of the photos can be clicked for enlargement

5) Tree benefit graph and tree valuation with species critique. (see above and below)

6) Morton Arboretum information on tree specifications, growth patterns, soil conditions, water needs

The purpose of the tree benefit part of this program will be to aid the Zoo in determining a monetary and ecological valuation of trees for insurance and replacement needs. There is a major nationwide movement to put an actual dollar amount on the value of trees both for residential and commercial uses.


Year End Review- By the Numbers

It's been a busy first year at the arboretum. Here's what was accomplished "by the numbers".

40 new accessions added to the arboretum inventory.

This includes new and previously unaccessioned species.

 160 new trees and woody shrubs planted including Conical and Globe Spruces, Arborvitae, Limber Pine, Norway Spruce, Cotoneaster, Colorado Spruce, Mackii Amurensis, Mugos, Snowberries, Wintercreepers, Willow, Junipers and Boxwoods. 

63 previously accessioned specimens have been verified and will be signed this spring. 

100's of community volunteers helped in the arboretum during 2018 !

M Y S T E R I E S   A N D    S U R P R I S E S

Be sure to visit the Yellowstone Arboretum's Sumac trees located along and both sides of the main pathway between the Lynx and Wolf habitats.

"The Unmistakable Sumac"

Staghorn sumac is often used in mass plantings, for naturalizing, or on steep slopes. Its open habit and hairy stems resemble horns on a male deer, giving staghorn sumac its name.   It is one of the last plants to leaf out in the spring with bright green leaves that change to an attractive yellow, orange, and scarlet in fall. Among the most recognizable characteristics are large, upright clusters of fuzzy red fruits that appear above the branches in late summer on female plants. They are highly appealing to birds. There's an interesting history of the arboretum's sumac collection. Planted in 1998, there were originally 15 plants all donated by Dr.Lee Richardson of Laurel, Montana. All are thriving in this rather secluded and well-watered area of the arboretum.


Need a break from all this information. Here's a video from our own Nature Guy, Jeff, explaining to kids what an arboretum is all about. Share Jeff's enthusiasm. 

Filmed in the Asian Garden, August 2018


If you have any Arboretum news you would like to share please feel free to e-mail us at: