US National Arboretum

 
 

 

Spring 2009 

News and Notes is issued three times a year to stakeholder organizations to keep them informed about recent arboretum accomplishments and activities. Stakeholders are encouraged to use material from this document in reports to their members. Please send comments to:

Thomas S. Elias, Director
Tom.Elias@ars.usda.gov

Scott Aker, Gardens Unit Leader
Scott.Aker@ars.usda.gov

Margaret Pooler, acting Floral and Nursery Plants Research Unit Leader
Margaret.Pooler@ars.usda.gov

Debbie Cicala, Administrative Officer
Debbie.Cicala@ars.usda.gov

Nancy Luria, Education and Visitor Services Unit Leader
Nancy.Luria@ars.usda.gov

Administration BuildingArboretum Receives Stimulus Funds

The U. S. National Arboretum received $9 million in federal Recovery Act funds to renovate its administration building.  The project is one of many funded by $176 million awarded to the Agricultural Research Service this spring for “shovel ready” projects involving deferred maintenance. Five years ago, arboretum staff worked with a contractor to develop detailed plans to modernize and re-configure the 1960s building. Plans include moving the classroom upstairs, adding more public restrooms, and upgrading mechanical, electrical, and plumbing systems. The improvements will result in more efficient use of space and energy. Read more...

New Partnership Helps Arboretum Become Greener

The National Arboretum has entered into a five-year agreement with The Research Foundation of State University of New York (RFSUNY) to collaborate on alternative energy projects. Under the terms of the agreement, the arboretum will fund energy-saving systems that RFSUNY’s Alfred State College will design and install at the arboretum. Read more...

Unique Exhibit Introduces Arboretum Visitors to New Plants

From June through October, visitors to the National Arboretum can explore a nursery catalog by walking instead of reading. The Living Garden Catalog is an indoor/outdoor exhibit that showcases 70 new plants developed by the nursery industry, including the arboretum’s Floral and Nursery Plant Research Unit. Read more...

New Greenhouse Complex Opens

In May, the arboretum moved into a new greenhouse complex built to replace the original one that was used for almost 40 years. The new range was a long time coming, having been planned over a six-year span, and is a welcome addition to state-of-the-art facilities on the grounds. Read more...

Fern Valley Construction Completed

The construction project in the Fern Valley Native Plant Collection that began last year was completed this spring. Portions of the collection were opened on Mother’s Day and the entire collection re-opened by the end of May. Read more...

New Irrigation System Completed in Azalea Collection

The Azalea Collections are now watered by a new irrigation system. The system will save many hours of labor previously spent moving hoses to set up impulse sprinklers for watering. It should also result in conserving water since computerized control of the system allows for watering in the evening and morning hours exclusively, when water loss due to evaporation is minimized. Read more...

“Moon Tree” Planted on Earth Day

To celebrate Earth Day 2009, the U.S. National Arboretum partnered with NASA and American Forests, the oldest conservation organization in the country, to plant a Moon Tree on the grounds of the arboretum. Read more...

Potomac Bonsai Festival Adds New Features

Thousands of visitors representing all levels of bonsai enthusiasts—from the curious observer to the accomplished artist—attended the Potomac Bonsai Festival held May 1-3 at the arboretum. Read more...

Arboretum Adds New Twist to Annual Trade Exhibit

The National Arboretum had a double booth at this year’s January Mid-Atlantic Nursery Trade Show (MANTS), and for the first time all the units of the arboretum (Research, Gardens, Education and Visitor Services) were involved with the design and staffing. Read more...

Green Committee

“Green” has two meanings for the National Arboretum: green spaces and gardens and green practices. To better address the latter, Director Thomas Elias created a Green Committee with representatives from all four of the institution’s units. Read more...

Research Unit Undergoes Reorganization

In an effort to improve research efficiency and keep national research priorities aligned, four scientists and their support personnel from the Floral and Nursery Plants Research Unit have been moved to other labs in Beltsville. Read more...

Integrated Pest Management Specialist Position Abolished

The Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Specialist position in the Gardens Unit was abolished in May. The Gardens Unit avoided the loss of five vacant positions last year when stakeholders successfully lobbied Congress to have $2,000,000 of proposed cuts to the Gardens and Education and Visitor Services Units restored. Read more...

New Staff Members Join Gardens Unit

Two new horticulturists and two new garden technicians joined the Gardens Unit staff this spring. Read more...

New Volunteer and Internship Coordinator Hired

Tanya Zastrow left her home state of Wisconsin in April to join the Education and Visitor Services Unit as the Volunteer and Internship Coordinator. She fills the first full-time, permanent position for this role. Read more...

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Last Updated   August 10, 2009 1:58 PM