Catch a tour of the Arboretum on Agronomy Day
July 22, 2011
  • /Agricultural and Consumer Economics
  • /Animal Sciences
  • /Crop Sciences
Enjoy guided tours of the University of Illinois Arboretum's 60 acres of manicured gardens and tranquil landscape at 8 a.m. and 10 a.m. on August 18 in conjunction with the 2011 U of I Agronomy Day sponsored by the Department of Crop Sciences in the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences (ACES).

Located just south of Florida Avenue off Lincoln Avenue, the Arboretum features several gardens, acres of lawn, groves of trees, serene ponds and miles of running paths.

"It's close, it's free and we love visitors," said Diane Anderson, horticulturalist and Arboretum grounds supervisor and trials manager. "We also have golf carts available for those who need assistance."

The Noel Welcome Garden invites guests to explore the two-acre Miles C Hartley Selections Gardens that is planted with more than 1,000 labeled seed and vegetative flower varieties that are evaluated for performance.

The Master Gardeners of Champaign County have created the Idea Garden to showcase gardening practices from borders to ornamentals and vegetables. The Idea Garden also includes a children's garden, sensory garden, small fruits garden and more.

"The Idea Garden inspires homeowners to use the best varieties available of perennials, annuals and woody plants," Anderson said. "This garden provides enjoyment to gardeners and non-gardeners alike."

Beyond the arboretum gardens, Japan House and its surrounding gardens are a wonderful cultural resource featuring typical Japanese architecture and landscaping. In addition, ponds near Japan House are home to ducks, blue herons, turtles and other wildlife, and will soon be planted with native plants.

The Arboretum is a campus level unit managed in partnership between the Department of Crop Sciences and the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences, said Germán Bollero, head of the Department of Crop Sciences.

"It is an essential component of our ornamentals and sustainable landscape design programs, as well as an effective connection with the community," Bollero said.

Tours during Agronomy Day will begin at the Agronomy Seed House located on the north side of West Hazelwood Drive almost two blocks west of Lincoln Avenue. Find the Agronomy Seed House on the Illinois Campus Map at For more information on Agronomy Day activities, visit

Visitors unable to take a tour on Agronomy Day are encouraged to set up a tour at another time by visiting The Arboretum is located at 1800 South Lincoln Avenue in Urbana.

News writer: Claire Benjamin, 217-333-1348,