Slice Of History At Frelinghuysen Arboretum

Dated: 11/01/2013

Views: 1102

The Frelinghuysen Arboretum in Morris Township, also known as the George Griswold Frelinghuysen Arboretum, combines natural beauty, horticulture education, and New Jersey history with an objective to provide a place of serenity for Morris County residents. It has trees in bloom during every season as well as about fifteen different kinds of gardens. The headquarters for the Morris County Park Commission, the 127-acre arboretum hosts a number of children's programs, including Branching Out, Junior Master Gardeners, Family Discovery Backpacks, and Scavenger Hunts through Friends of the Frelinghuysen Arboretum's ( Haggerty Education Center.

Things to know before you go   Located near Morristown Beard School and along the Whippany River, the Frelinghuysen Arboretum was NJ Monthly's runner-up for Best Public Garden in 2012.In addition to the gardens and seasonal plots, the grounds also contain a Colonial Revival mansion, carriage house, gazebo, and cottage. The Patriots Path, a 35-mile network of trails that connects notable Revolutionary War sites, has an offshoot that loops through the Frelinghuysen's gardens.

The Friends of the Frelinghuysen Arboretum are a critical part of the park's community outreach. They offer a well-known annual plant sale in the spring.

353 East Hanover Ave. Morris Township, NJ  
Haggerty Education Center, 9am to 4:30pm Grounds, 8am to dusk. Free admission.
Tis the Season In case you missed the springtime flowers, there is something blooming every day at the Frelinghuysen Arboretum.  
Year-round: Conifers January and February: Witch hazels and early flowering bulbs
March and April: Hellebores, Cornelian Cherries, and spring bulbs.
Late April to Early May: flowering Cherries, Magnolias, and spring bulbs
May and June: Rhododendrons, Dogwoods, Lilac, Viburnums, Azaleas, Hostas, Stewartias, and Roses
September through March: Ornamental Grasses
October: Fall colors, especially maples
December: Holly  
List of gardens: Perennial Garden, Nurseyman's Garden, Winter Garden, Rock Garden, Blue Garden, Special Needs Garden & Pavilion, Vegetable Garden, Cottage Garden, Crescent Garden, Waterwise Garden, Progressive 4 Seasons Garden, Alpine Garden, Seasonal Displays, Marsh Meadow Pavilion, New Introduction Garden, and Rose Circle.
A Slice of History   George Griswold Frelinghuysen's father was the 29th Secretary of State under President Chester A. Arthur, Frederick T. Frelinghuysen. George became a patent lawyer and, after marrying Sara Linen Ballantine, became the president of P. Ballantine & Sons Company. Ballantine Ale is one of the oldest beer brands in the United States (now owned by Pabst Blue Ribbon and brewed by Miller Brewing Company). Based in Newark, the company was twice the size of Anhueser-Busch at the turn of the 20th century.  

The Frelinghuysen's used the grounds of the arboretum, then known as Whippany Farm, as a summer house where vegetables were grown and shipped via train to their New York City townhouse. Their mansion was designed in the Colonial Revival style, a late 19th century movement that brought back the architectural traditions of the Georgian era of Great Britain. This style was prevalent during the Revolution War; its revival seen as honoring American heritage. 

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