Living Collections Wood Archive


Each accession of the The Morton Arboretum’s Living Collections reflects years of research, propagation, and curatation effort. These collections form the core of the Arboretum’s identity and house nearly 4,000 different taxa from 40 countries, including 90 threatened or endangered taxa.  Our collections are “living” not just in the sense that our trees are alive, but also in that the individual trees and taxa represented on our grounds is constantly changing. There is constant turnover in our collections as trees are removed due to poor performance, disease, or to make room for new accessions. Because of our temperate continental climate, all trees at the Arboretum should form annual growth rings in their wood. When properly collected, prepared, and stored can provide opportunities for research on fundamental tree biology and ecology for decades to come. Preserving and analyzing cross-sectional stem samples from trees in the Living Collections will generate a globally unique collection that would advance tree science and complement existing efforts of The Morton Arboretum.