About the Arboretum

A heavily wooded choipped path trail
When Joy Morton established The Morton Arboretum in 1922, he envisioned a “great outdoor museum” of trees. Today, our living collections inspire visitors to appreciate, learn about, plant, and protect trees. The Arboretum champions the world's trees through plant collections, science and conservation, education, and outreach.

The Morton Arboretum's 1,700 acres hold more than 222,000 live plants representing nearly 4,300 taxa from around the world. Situated on the rolling Valparaiso moraine and bisected by the East Branch of the DuPage River, the Arboretum is planned and planted to nurture and display trees and shrubs in environments conducive to their growth.

The Arboretum conducts leading scientific research on tree health and tree improvement, collects and displays trees for study and enjoyment on the grounds, offers educational programming for adults and children, and presents nature-related activities year-round for people of all ages and interests.

Also on the grounds are the Visitor Center with The Arboretum Store and Ginkgo Restaurant and Café, four-acre Children’s Garden, one-acre Maze Garden, Sterling Morton Library, Plant Clinic, nine miles of roads, and 16 miles of trails.

Perennial Reports

Stories. Photos. Results! Read the Perennial Report to discover the many ways The Morton Arboretum championed trees. READ THE REPORT

Arbor Day at The Morton Arboretum

Arbor Day is The Morton Arboretum's signature holiday. Learn about its connection to the Morton family, how you can celebrate, and more.  LEARN MORE

Trustees & Advisors

An elected Board of Trustees oversees the administration and operations of the organization. A Board of Advisors serves as ambassadors and advocates for the Arboretum in the community. LEARN MORE 


Mission and history of the Arboretum

The Arboretum was founded in 1922 by Morton Salt magnate Joy Morton. His inspiration came from his father, J.  Sterling Morton (1832-1902), the founder of Arbor Day. LEARN MORE


Current projects on our grounds

Though The Morton Arboretum has acted as the champion of trees for more than 90 years, we know a greener future relies on constant improvement. Visitors may notice the following projects currently underway at our 1,700-acre tree museum. Each will help us do our best work, and provide you with the best experience, for many more decades. We thank you for your support as we work to complete them. Learn more

Financial information

As a nonprofit organization, The Morton Arboretum holds itself accountable to the public, including all its members and other constituents who support the Arboretum’s mission. Past and present financial information is regularly published online. LEARN MORE

Perennial reports

Read the Perennial Report to discover the many ways The Morton Arboretum championed trees! Learn more

Affiliates and partners

The Morton Arboretum works together with professional affiliates to support a mission of a greener, healthier, and more beautiful world. LEARN MORE 


Sustainability at the Arboretum

Since its founding in 1922, The Morton Arboretum has demonstrated sustainable practices to benefit the community.  Science and conservation efforts here strive to preserve native plant species, manage invasive species, and improve tree care and preservation within urban forests. learn more


Working at the Arboretum

Employees of the Arboretum are passionate about trees and nature, and enjoy a wonderful environment to earn a living. The Arboretum offers a generous benefits package for full-time employees that include medical and dental insurance, life and disability insurance, and a 401(K) plan. LEARN MORE