From American elms to Yoshino Japanese-cedars, more than 4,000 trees dot the verdant landscape at Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania. A newly announced staff position will take the lead in growing and maintaining this remarkable arboreal collection.
Morris Arboretum has raised $1.5 million to support and endow the Paul W. Meyer Chief Arborist. This critical new position is expected to be filled at the beginning of 2020, and is named for Paul W. Meyer, the former F. Otto Haas Executive Director of the Arboretum, who retired earlier this year.
“Paul is a regional hero for his work over decades educating our community, and those far beyond it, about trees,” says Janet Haas, Arboretum Board Member Emerita. “We cannot imagine a more fitting way to honor his legacy than to ensure that he is associated in perpetuity with the Chief Arborist position.”
Morris Arboretum’s tree collection is a defining feature of the garden and is a fundamental aspect of its mission. Of the 11,985 accessioned plants throughout the Arboretum (not including those in the greenhouse), 4,127 of these are classified as trees, ranging from small, recently-planted seedlings, to vigorous teenage and maturing trees, all the way to impressive veteran specimens.
Funding the Chief Arborist position is something that we have been working towards for several years. It is remarkably gratifying to have secured the funding that will allow us to fill this critical Arboretum role.”Anthony Aiello, the Gayle E. Mahoney Director of Horticulture and Curator
It is essential to preserve, maintain, and grow this collection in order to achieve Morris Arboretum’s goals of research, horticulture, and education. The continued efforts to focus and improve Morris Arboretum’s tree care ensure that this resource continues for future generations. Adding the Chief Arborist will be a great addition in allowing the Arboretum to care for its trees, while also strengthening the arboriculture education and outreach programs.
Further support will help to ensure the Arboretum has the resources to engage students, horticulturalists, and everyday visitors through spectacular landscapes, diverse programs, and the continued scientific study of plant specimens.