Wellesley College Botanic Gardens

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United States of America - Massachusetts - Wellesley

Institution Code: WELC

BGCI Member: No

About the Wellesley College Botanic Gardens

The mission of the WCBG is two-fold:

- to increase participation in science by engaging people with a diverse array of outstanding botanical resources for teaching, research, and exploration, and

- to promote scientific and environmental literacy in the college and broader communities, using aesthetic appeal and dynamic programming to stimulate interest in the natural world.

Our collections policy provides an overview of the plant collections and current implementation of this mission statement. Click here to download the collections policy as a .pdf file.

The WCBG foster a progression from an instinctive affinity for plants, nature, and harmonious landscapes to a science-based understanding and appreciation of them. Programs and courses such as Botanical Art and Environmental Horticulture are appealing bridges into science for broad audiences. A docent program engages students and volunteers in the natural history of the gardens and plant collections. The botanical resources and the accumulating body of knowledge about them provide ever-increasing opportunities for teaching and research at the College.

Throughout their history the WCBG have emphasized educational value, primarily via the impressively diverse plant collections. Now there is also a sharpened focus on a fundamental role of plants in nature and in culture: as food. Priority for addition to the outdoor plant collections is based in part on a plant’s food value for native birds, insects, and other animals, and the gardens are maintained with minimal disruption of ecological interactions among native species. The greenhouses accommodate plants from a variety of habitats around the world, with a special emphasis on plants of cultural significance as food or spice. With this focus on plants as food, the WCBG are an extraordinary resource for studies ranging from anthropology to zoology.

Wellesley College Botanic Gardens - more than a feast for the eyes!

Main Address:
Wellesley College Botanic Gardens
Science Center
106 Central Street
Massachusetts 02481-8203 United States of America

Telephone: (781) 283-3027
Fax: (781) 283-3642
URL: www.wellesley.edu/WCBG/
Primary Email: kjones@wellesley.edu

Staff Details

  • Director's Name: Kristina Niovi Jones, Director
    Curator's Name: Gail Kahn, Assistant Director
    Plant Records Officer's Name: Julianna Razryadov, Botanical Collections Manager

About the Garden

  • Institution Type: Botanic Garden
  • Status
  • Status: Educational: Yes
  • Date founded: 1875
  • Physical Data
  • Total Area: 202 Hectares
    Latitude: 42.2958600
    Longitude: -71.3002510
    Annual Rainfall: 1163 mm
    Altitude: 0.00 Metres

Features and Facilities

  • Arboretum: Yes
  • Computer Plant Record System: Yes
  • Friends society: Yes

Plant Collections

  • Special Collections:Lichens, Hawaiian ferns, Rhododendron, Cryptomeria japonica, Kalmia latifolia, Caltha palustris, Equisetum, Erircaceae, Pinus, Chamaecyparis pisifera, Tilia americana, Ilex spp., Phellodendron, Quercus spp., Liriodendron tulipifera, Metasequoia glyptostroboides, Platanus spp., Oxydendrum arboreum, Stewartia pseudocamelia, Fagus sylvatica, Juglans nigra, Corylus americana, Carya buckleyi var. arkansana, Pseudolarix, Taxodium distichum, Salix alba, Batula papyrifera, Iridaceae, Cornus sericea, Gymnocladus dioica, Crataegus viridus, Malus spp., Rhus typhina, Acer spp.

Conservation Programmes

Research Programmes

Education Programmes

  • Visitor/Education Centre: Yes