The University of Michigan Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum
Arb Parking Tip
Free street parking spaces are sometimes available on Oswego St. near the Arb's Geddes Street entrance.
Click here for a map.
In spring, Matthaei and the Arb burst into life. Over 20,000 daffodils in a line emerge and bloom at the Arb The fragrance of lilacs is on the air. Woody plants show off their flowers and the peonies peak in June.
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.

MiSo House - Michigan Solar House

MiSo House recently relocated to Matthaei Botanical Gardens
Innovative, Sustainable, Customizable
Michigan Solar House is designed to use only renewable sources of energy. The house captures solar energy and converts it to electricity, which powers all energy-dependent elements such as appliances, a radiant heat floor, and lighting. Solar collectors follow the south face of the house to maximize exposure to the sun. Environmentally friendly materials, including sunflower-board cabinets, ash-wood finishes, and low chemical processes, were also used to build MiSo. In addition, the modular design offers an affordable and customizable home that can be easily transported, constructed, and deconstructed. MiSo's structure is as sustainable as the energy that powers it.

A Green Landscape
MiSo's place at Matthaei Botanical Gardens symbolizes our ongoing commitment to sustainability with the addition of an outdoor living space. Native plantings consume less water and attract wildlife, while examples of urban agriculture minimize environmental impact by supplying fresh food.

Why was MiSo House Created?
MiSo House was created by a team of faculty and students from multiple disciplines as U-M's entry in the 2005 Solar Decathlon. The competition, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, promotes the advantages of a solar-powered lifestyle to the general public. Lead design for MiSo was done by faculty and students at the University of Michigan Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning (TCAUP), which continues to conduct research about MiSo. Studies continue on the readings and functions of MiSo house. Please visit the Taubman College MiSo homepage for more information.

MiSo House is staffed by volunteers on weekends May through October. Check with the front desk for the day's schedule (734.647.7600).

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