The University of Michigan Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum
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Winter is a great time to take a stroll and appreciate the conifers along the trails at the Arb and Gardens. If you wish to avoid the chill of winter, stop into the Conservatory at the Gardens to experience the sights and smells of plants from all over the world.
Check out the bloom calendar.
study spots
Looking for a location to hold a group meeting? We have some of the University's best study spots.

Plant diversity abounds in the Tropical House. Revel in lush vegetation as you take in the great variation in plant and flower shape, size, color and texture. Plants in the tropical house are from warm, frost-free climates, so this a great place to visit year round. Many plants are continuously flowering -- the orchid and bromeliad displays are changed each week. Others, such as the sausage tree (Kigelia pinnata) and tulip tree (Spathodea campanulata), flower in the summer. For the food-oriented visitors, look for our chocolate tree (Theobroma cacao), bananas (Musa), pineapples (Ananas), black pepper (Piper) and coffee (Coffea).

This is an engaging teaching collection that has taken a century to build. Themes include evolutionary relationships and novelties, co-evolutionary adaptations, culturally important human domesticates and, reflective of our times, at-risk species. Our oldest plants were acquired in 1910 when the teaching collection was potted plants grown in a greenhouse at what is now the Nichols Arboretum.

The Tropical House is in the Conservatory at the Matthaei Botanical Gardens site.

back to conservatory


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