Let Nature Challenge You
The Jacksonville Arboretum & Gardens is a 120-acre urban woodland full of trails for you to explore and enjoy.
From the trailhead next to the parking lot, a stabilized walkway encircles a beautiful two-acre lake. This trail gently descends about 25 feet from to the foot of the lake and then returns up a gentle slope on the opposite side to the trailhead. Interpretive signs and over 100 labeled plants enhance the loop.
In addition, over three miles of rustic hiking trails wind quietly through a series of distinct ecological habitats. Along the trails, benches invite you either to pause and enjoy the view or to get in a good stretch during a vigorous walk.
The Arboretum is developed and managed by the Jacksonville Arboretum & Gardens, Inc., a non-profit entity that leases the land from the City. Except for special events, there is no admission fee. $3 non-member visitor donation requested to help pay operations.
Open to the public 7 days a week from 8 AM to 5 PM.
Entry gates are locked promptly at closing so plan your visit so that you exit the Arboretum prior to closing.
ADA – For accommodation please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
News – February 2017
Adoration at the Arboretum
Valentine’s Day is coming up soon. What better place to spend time with those you care about than at the Jacksonville Arboretum & Gardens? Have a picnic, stroll the trails, admire the flowers and stop by the donation box. You will not be disappointed.
We LOVE Our Volunteers!
Despite rain, several hardy people came out to our January work day. Fortunately the weather improved quickly. Volunteers weeded, trimmed back plants damaged by the recent cold, planted new plants, and watered. Work days are critical to keeping up appearances at the Jacksonville Arboretum and Gardens. We are grateful for the help from our garden volunteers.
Thank You Troop 519 & Supporters
Kenny Speth of Boy Scout Troop 519 has spent the past several months recruiting volunteers and in-kind donations for his Eagle Scout Project. He and a squadron of reinforcements braved the absolutely foul weather January 7th to install an extension of the south boundary fence. We hope the fence will help keep the trails from getting torn up by bikers who trespass after hours. Kenny wishes to thank Lowe’s, Sunbelt Rentals, Johnson Controls, CCI, and Papa John’s for their donations of materials, time, and lunch.
Calendula: A Winter Annual for Jacksonville
Calendula officianalis is better known as calendula or pot marigold. It is a bushy little plant to twelve inches or so in height with lettuce-like leaves and large, colorful daisies. The daisies are in shades of yellow and orange. Flowers may be double or single, with a yellow to brown disk in the center. Native to Europe, it is not well-suited to Florida summers but it grows well through the cool months.
Calendula is not just a pretty flower, it is edible and has been used medicinally. The leaves and flowers may be eaten fresh or cooked. The leaves have been used also to treat scratches and scrapes. The petals are added to salads, soups and cheese for their bright color. The flowers have been used as tea, as a dye for cloth and in cosmetics. Literature indicated that the flowers have been used in traditional medicines since the time of the ancient Greeks. Modern lab tests indicate that compounds in the plant contain antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties. Calendula ointment and essential oils are available commercially. Medical websites offer no warnings for external use but indicate that pregnant women should not eat calendula flowers or drink the tea.
Calendula plants are rare in local nurseries and plant shops. The leaves break easily so it may be that they do not tolerate much handling. However, seeds germinate readily – in about ten days. They may be sown from October to February. The plants will survive frosts and light freezes but may be damaged by a hard freeze. If the flowers are removed as they fade, to prevent seed development, they can flower into June. In January, volunteers planted several calendula plants in the walk-in entry of the Jacksonville Arboretum and Gardens.
Discovering Nature Nearby Programs for 2017
On February 18th, professional forester Jack Hernandez will be at the Arboretum to discuss fires and their impacts on Florida ecosystems. Join us at 9:30 AM by the picnic tables. This will be our fifth Discovering Nature Nearby program brought to you by TD Bank, Rayonier Advanced Materials, and the Jacksonville Arboretum & Gardens. Each third Saturday of the month through May 2017 expert presenters educate the public on a wide variety of topics. All ages and abilities are welcome free of charge, although contributions to our donation box are greatly appreciated. Bring your nature journal, bug spray, and a friend.
Show the World You Love the Arboretum
Directions/Map, Facilities, Hours of Operation
Rules about your visit are on this page including information about dogs and Photo policy (.pdf)
Photos collections covering the arboretum, our events, some of the plants and much more
Information on Guided Tours including How to Schedule, Self-Guided
Tours, Points of Interest
Envision your wedding or special event in the beautiful natural settings of the Jacksonville Arboretum – a lush, forested oasis in the midst of the city.
Coverage of our events, awards and other news
E-newsletter sign up and archive
Who Our Supporters Are
Links to Websites
Links to Places to Visit