A peaceful place to learn about native plants

The Arboretum in Flagstaff, Arizona is a truly unique place with a Ponderosa pine forest, garden and greenhouse with 2,500 plants on a 200 acres site. The arboretum offers tours for school groups and the general public. The school group tours are grade appropriate. In addition, they have a number of different festivals and offer a concert series during the summer months. The purpose of the Arboretum “is to increase the understanding, appreciation, and conservation of plant and plant communities native to the Colorado Plateau.” The Arboretum is inside the Coconino National Forest.


The Arboretum welcomes visitors from May to October, Wednesday through Sunday. Docents lead two fifty minute tours to the arboretum: one at 11 in the morning and one at 1 in the afternoon. They give bird walks and wildflower tours, as well. A member of the Audubon Society leads the bird walks. The gardens attract many birds from May to July. The tours take place on Saturday mornings starting at 7:30. Local botanists and naturalists lead wildflower tours at different time during the spring and summer months. The tours take place at the arboretum. They are two hours long. Check the website to see when the tours occur and who leads them. Only twenty people can attend each tour.

School group tours

Professional environmental instructors lead children from preschool through sixth grade on themed walks appropriate for each grade level. Topics include using the senses Junior high and high school students have the opportunity to work on restoration projects. These students receive hands on experience helping researchers from their research center while learning the importance of native plants.

Annual events

The Arboretum offers family-friendly weekend events throughout the warmest months. The events include the Arbor Day Festival celebrating nature and trees; summer concerts with world-renown musicians from June through September; a Plant Sale consisting of many native plants accompanying a Penstemon Festival in mid-July. The event is free. They offer a Summer Soiree to raise funds for the operation of the Arboretum. A Mushroom Festival introduces visitors to mushroom hunting and guides help visitors find the fungi. A Pumpkin Walk in October allows guest to see the gardens by the flickering lights of the carved pumpkins.

The Arboretum is a place for all people interested in gardening and walking through natural settings. It is also a place for picnics and relaxing with family in natural settings.