The Maryland Native Plant Society

The Maryland Native Plant Society
  • Events
  • Field Trip: Spring Tree Tour of the Capitol Grounds

Field Trip: Spring Tree Tour of the Capitol Grounds

  • 05/05/2012
  • 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM
  • US Botanic Garden, Washington DC

Sponsoring Organization: US Botanic Garden

Leader: Melanie Choukas-Bradley, Author of City of Trees

Spend a May morning strolling under the venerable trees that grace the U.S. Capitol grounds with Melanie Choukas-Bradley, author of City of Trees. The lush and botanically diverse Capitol grounds were designed by the pre-eminent 19th century landscape architect Frederick Law Olmstedundefineddesigner of New York City’s Central Park and many other North American landscapesundefinedand they have been described as one of the world’s finest arboretums. We will explore the historic groves of the Capitol at the height of spring foliage and flower, admiring and learning about the trees that grace the grounds, including species from around the United States and the world. We hope to see magnolias, fringe-trees, buckeyes, horse-chestnuts and other flowering trees in bloom. 

The tour begins at the USBG Conservatory and continues to the Capitol. Learn some basics of tree identification and a secret side of political Washington: the love of trees that goes back to founding presidents George Washington and Thomas Jefferson and led to the capital becoming known as the “City of Trees.” Memorial trees planted by Members of Congress including one that is 100 years oldundefinedare among the trees on the tour. Hear arboreal highlights of the city’s planning history and recommendations for local natural areas for further exploration. 

Please note: This tour is held outdoors. We suggest bringing sunscreen, protective clothing and water. The tour is canceled if it rains or during times of extreme heat (heat index of 95 degrees or higher/Code Red weather alert).

Pre-registration is required: Free. Code: TH050512 

Visit or call at (202) 225-1116

Location: Tour meets on the Terrace by the entrance to the USBG Conservatory

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