Created and administered by the Morton Arboretum in Chicago, the ArbNet Arboretum Accreditation Program is the only international accreditation program specific to arboreta. It fosters professionalism and collaboration and recognizes arboreta at various levels of development.
The program is free of charge, and accreditation is valid for five years with a simple renewal every five years.
Examples of institutions that may be accredited include arboreta and botanic gardens, historic properties, college campuses, cemeteries, zoos, city tree collections, corporate campuses, school properties, golf courses, nature reserves and municipal parks.
There are four levels of accreditation. The most basic level requires the achievement of the following standards:
- An arboretum plan
- An organizational or governance group
- 25+ labeled tree and woody plant species, varieties or cultivars
- Staff or volunteer support
- Public access and at least one event per year (such as an Arbor Day observance)
Wisconsin has six ArbNet accredited arboreta: Arboretum at Starin Park in Whitewater, Boerner Botanical Gardens in Hales Corners, Forest Home Cemetery and Arboretum in Milwaukee, Maple Grove Heritage Park in Reedsville, the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Arboretum and the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater (Salisbury and Chopp Arboretums).
To learn more about becoming an accredited arboretum, click here.