FALL 2019

Registration is required for all programs (except where noted). Please call 860-439-5020 or email arbor@conncoll.edu. Please note that space is limited and most programs fill up quickly.

Programs are free for current Connecticut College students (advance registration is required).

Once you have confirmed your registration with the Arboretum office by email or phone, you can use our  secure online payment for program registration fees.

Arboretum Garden Tours 

Native Plant Collection – Sep 1, Oct 6, Nov 3
Caroline Black Garden – Sep 8, Oct 13, Nov 10
10 to 11:30 a.m.
Meet in front of the Olin Science Center.
Free, no registration required
Take a guided tour to learn more about the plants in our collections.


An Exploration of Apples - Arboretum Director Lecture & Reception
Thursday, September 12, 4 to 6 p.m.
Miles Sax, Arboretum Director
Meet in Blaustein Humanities Center: Lecture in Ernst Common Room, Reception in Hood Dining.
Free, registration required
From the Garden of Eden to New England homesteads, the apple has provided humans a source of sustenance, beauty, libation and lore to cultures across the world throughout the centuries. Please join us for a lecture presented by the newly appointed Arboretum Director and apple expert Miles S. Sax as we explore the botanical diversity and splendor of the genus Malus (apple). He will discuss how this fruit has traveled across the world and become a predominant feature of our horticultural landscapes and culinary tradition. Following the lecture all participants are cordially invited to attend a reception hosted by the Arboretum.


Collecting Seed from Native Plants Workshop
Saturday, September 14, 9 a.m. to 12 noon
Hope Leeson, botanist for the Rhode Island Natural History Survey and founder of Rhody Native™
Meet in New London Hall, Botany Lab room 112.
$20 ($15 members Arboretum or Wild Ones); registration required
This workshop will cover gathering seed-bearing structures from a variety of native plants including fleshy fruits, tree nuts, dry pods or capsules, fluffy seed heads and grass seeds. Participants will learn how to process the fruits and seed heads to separate viable seeds, which seeds should be planted immediately and how to store others for future use. Following a lecture in the classroom, we will collect seeds from the Arboretum grounds. Bring hand pruners if you have them. Participants will leave class with numerous seeds to care for. Space is limited, register early.


Painting the Landscape
Wednesday, September 18, 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Julie Riggs, Florence Griswold Museum Art Educator
Use Williams Street entrance to the Arboretum, meet at Buck Lodge.
$20 ($15 members); registration required
Capture the beauty of the Arboretum with plein-air painting. This outdoor workshop begins with an introductory lesson about the tools and techniques of the American Impressionist painters. Students then paint a landscape using authentic artist’s materials (acrylic paints, palette, brushes, canvas board, and smock) down by the Arboretum Pond. Each participant will leave with a completed landscape painting. For artists of all levels and students of all ages. All supplies included.


Mamacoke Mysteries Revealed
Sunday, September 22, 9 to 11:30 a.m.
Beverly Chomiak, Senior Lecturer in Geology and Environmental Studies
Meet and park at the east end of Benham Avenue (Waterford) just before the railroad tracks.
$10 (free members); registration required
Through the study of geology, we come to understand how the earth came to be. Participants will climb the island, from sand flats to rock-strewn summit, and learn the origins of Mamacoke’s long and complex history. This will be a rugged walk; participants should dress in long pants and wear appropriate shoes.


Foraging for Native Plants
Tuesday, September 24, 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Manuel Lizarralde, Professor of Botany and Environmental Studies
Meet at Arboretum entrance on Williams Street.
$10 (free members Arboretum or CT Audubon); registration required
Join Professor Lizarralde on a tour of the Native Plant Collection to learn about edible plants growing in our local woods and responsible harvesting methods. Early fall is a great time to harvest wild greens and herbs, roots and tubers, nuts and seeds, mushrooms, and fruits.


Invasive Plants Talk and Walk
Sunday, October 6, 2 to 4 p.m.
Leigh Knuttel, Arboretum Horticulturalist
Meet at 33 Gallows Lane.
Free; registration required
Invasive plants have replaced native species in many different habitats in Connecticut. When native plants are displaced, the diversity of native birds, insects, animals and plants may be decreased and ecosystem functions may be affected. Learn to identify the most common invasive plants and techniques to eradicate or control them.


New London Tree Walk from A to Z
Saturday, October 19, 10 to 11:30 a.m.
Maggie Redfern, Connecticut College Arboretum Assistant Director
Meet at the Public Library of New London Community Room, 63 Huntington Street.
Free, no registration required
Within downtown New London there’s everything from Acer to Zelkova. Urban trees provide a range of benefits from environmental to social. Learn to identify some of the more common and most unusual specimens on the downtown streets and parks. This tour is for anyone interested in nature in the city.


Fall Migration to Benham Meadows
Saturday, October 26, 9 to 10:30 a.m.
Robert Askins, Professor Emeritus of Biology
$10 (free members Arboretum or CT Audubon); registration required
The Arboretum has provided important habitat for birds since its founding. Learn how to use field marks, habitat and behavior as aids to identify year-round residents and fall migrating birds. Bring binoculars if you have them. Walk is limited to 15 people.


All about Autumn Color Tour
Sunday, October 27, 10 to 11:30 a.m.
Miles Sax, Arboretum Director
Meet at Arboretum entrance on Williams Street.
Free; no registration required
New England is one of the best places in the world to enjoy the annual color that happens before our deciduous forests drop their leaves for winter. This walk through the Native Plant Collection will highlight some of the most reliable species for adding fall color to your garden and review the processes that lead to the brilliant reds, yellows, oranges and purples.


Smaller American Lawns Today (SALT) Conference
Creating Edible Gardens for People and Pollinators
November 9, 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Meet in Cummings Arts Center, Oliva Hall
$65 before Nov. 1/$80 after ($50 before Nov. 1/$65 after members Arboretum or Wild Ones); registration required, call 860-439-5020 or email arbor@conncoll.edu
See full program details.


Full Moon Walk
Tuesday, November 12, 8 to 9 p.m.
Maggie Redfern, Arboretum Assistant Director
Meet at Arboretum entrance on Williams Street.
Free; no registration required
Experience the Arboretum in a new light, under the Beaver Moon with Maggie Redfern, Arboretum assistant director. This night tour will explore best spots for viewing the moon on campus and in the Native Plant Collection. Star gaze as you take in the sights and sounds. Bring your family, your favorite person to watch the moon with and a flashlight.


Fall Foliage and Feathers
Saturday, November 16, 9 to 10:30 a.m.
Meet at Arboretum entrance on Williams Street.
$10 (free members Arboretum or CT Audubon), registration required, visit www.ctaudubon.org/rtp-programs-events/ or call 860-598-4218.
Fall in Connecticut means beautiful changing foliage and migrating birds. Experience the best of both in the Connecticut College Arboretum. Join a teacher-naturalist from the Roger Tory Peterson Estuary Center as we explore the large catalog of tree species and diverse habitats that make for excellent bird watching and leaf peeping. Binoculars recommended. Co-sponsor: CT Audubon Society’s Roger Tory Peterson Estuary Center


PROGRAM IS FULL*: Holiday Wreath Making Workshop
Saturday, December 7, 9 a.m. to noon
Leigh Knuttel, Arboretum Horticulturalist and Mary Villa, Arboretum Curator
Meet at 33 the Olin Science Center.
*Wait list registration only, call 860-439-5020 or email arbor@conncoll.edu
This festive Arboretum event takes place every year during the holiday season. After a brief demonstration, participants will begin practicing the craft of wreath-making. Each participant will go home with an extraordinary wreath for holiday decorating. Bring hand pruners and any other embellishments you wish to incorporate. Everything else will be provided. Space is limited, register early.