HenFeathers tours the Morris Arboretum
The Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania is the offical arboretum of Pennsylvania. Located in Chestnut Hill, just outside of Philadelphia is an amazing collection of landscapes of plants and trees from around the world. It is a wonderful place to spend a day or more exploring. It is a hidden gem just a few minutes from center city Philadelphia.
The arboretum began as the estate of John and Lydia Morris, a brother and sister who began landscaping much of the current site in 1887. John Morris interest was collecting and growing plants from around the world. Around 1900 the site was able to add the many species collected by E. H. Wilson in China and many of today’s specimens date to these original plantings.
The site’s 92 acres are home to more than 13,000 labelled plants representing at least 2,5oo types from North America, Europe and with a focus on Asia. It is filled with wonderful garden rooms, walkways, streams, sculptures and, of course, trees and plants by the thousands.
The arboretum is primarily designed in the English park style, but, has many Japanese influences. Features include winding paths and streams, a pond for swans, rose gardens, and vast stretches of azaleas, rhododendrons and magnolias.