Arbor Day – Trees for Twos

Friday was Arbor Day, our annual national celebration of trees. This year, the arboretum was buzzing with excitement as we hosted seven classes of second graders from St. Peter South Elementary for our Trees for Twos event. The students participated in a number of interactive workshops facilitated by arboretum staff, students, and education majors. The […]

New Arboretum Public Enemy: Amur Cork tree

This summer, as you stroll the wooded trails of the Arboretum, be on the lookout for our new public enemy number one.  Its name is Amur cork tree (Phellodendron amurense), and there’s a good chance you’ll be hearing more about this tree species in the future. Hundreds of young saplings of this tree species were […]

Backyard Adventures

Spring is my favorite time of year. We suffer through the remaining days of cold, but we know it won’t last. The world around us is about to change, and we ache for it. Many gardeners have been thinking about spring planting all winter, and the anticipation is overwhelming. On our family farm, we try […]

Coming Attractions

Wood anemone (anemone quinquifolia) Keep your eyes open for some exciting additions to the Mason Deciduous Woods coming this spring. Thanks to a native pollinator grant from Pheasants Forever, we’ll be bringing a variety of native woodland wildflower species to our deciduous woods. For most of the time since the original planting of the deciduous […]

What is Natural?

Blend of natural and unatural You’ll find a lot of references in our recent issue of the Twinflower newsletter and Arb Sightings blog to plants that are either “supposed to be here” or “not supposed to be here.” We in the natural resources world do that a lot.  We do it with plants, animals, and pretty much […]

List of Invasive Minnesota Plant Species Continues to Grow

Wild parsnip There are a couple of new, troublesome, plant species that have emerged on the scene in Minnesota recently.  Unfortunately, they are just the latest in a long and growing list of such plants. We humans have been introducing plant species to new parts of the world for quite a while, to the point […]

Coneflower Prairie & City Roadwork Update

The new St. Peter High School and accompanying road projects are reshaping the perimeter of the Coneflower Prairie.  City of St. Peter Public Works has already installed a new water main on the prairie side of Gardner Road, and will be doing extensive work beginning this spring. Plans call for a rounding of the corner […]

Students explore ecosystems of the Arboretum

Earlier this week, students in a new interdisciplinary course, Digging In, ventured to the Arboretum to explore the various ecosystems reflective of the Minnesota and Midwest region. Taught by Professors Cindy Johnson and Becky Fremo, students had the opportunity to apply what they learned in the classroom to an outdoor, hands-on experience. The students visited […]

Borgeson Cabin Work Slated for this Summer

Both Arboretum and advancement office staff are pleased to announce that the fundraising goal for the Borgeson Cabin restoration project was met this winter, and work on the cabin is slated to occur this summer. The much-needed structural restoration work will involve measures such as replacing rotten wood, fixing gaps and holes, stabilizing shifting walls, […]

Fall yardwork stirs up hornet’s nest

This large papery nest was found this fall, and was constructed by a colony of hornets     Most people don’t take kindly to finding wasp nests around their yard, but I find that they make for a convenient excuse for going in the house, pouring a nice glass of iced tea, and watching the […]