North Carolina Arboretum

North Carolina Arboretum

North Carolina Arboretum

100 Frederick Law Olmsted Way
AshevilleNC  28806
(828) 665-2492
Hours:
November - March:  8:00a - 7:00p (gate closes at 6:00p)
April - October:  8:00a - 9:00p (gate closes at 8:00p)

Admission Fee: There is no admission fee, but there is a hefty parking fee ($14.00 per vehicle as of April, 2017).

The North Carolina Arboretum covers 434 acres and is located in the Bent Creek Experimental Forest.The arboretum includes many hiking and bicycling trails. There is also a bonsai collection, a holly garden, and a stream garden. Its tree collection includes a set of Metasequoias planted in 1950, and now said to be the tallest in the south (over 100 feet in height).

Driving directions from:


  •  Blue Ridge Parkway – Exit at mile marker 393 for The N.C. Arboretum, Hwy. 191 and Interstate 26. On the exit ramp, the entrance to the Arboretum is immediately on the left (before Hwy. 191 and traffic light).
  • Downtown Asheville – Take Interstate 240 West (soon to be I-26 East, both signs may be present) and merge onto Interstate 26 East. Take Exit 33 (marked Blue Ridge Parkway/Brevard Road/Hwy. 191) off of I-26 East. Turn left (south) onto Hwy. 191. Travel south on Hwy. 191 for approximately 2.1 miles (pass Asheville Outlets). Look for brown signs for the Blue Ridge Parkway and The N.C. Arboretum. Turn right at the light and the entrance to The North Carolina Arboretum is on the right. Note: You may also take Exit 1 from I-240 West (signs are marked for the Arboretum). 
  • Asheville Regional Airport – Take Interstate 26 West (travel North toward Asheville), approximately seven miles. Take Exit 33 (marked Blue Ridge Parkway/Brevard Road/Hwy. 191). Turn right at the top of the ramp (south) onto Hwy. 191. Travel south on Hwy 191 for approximately 2.1 miles (pass Asheville Outlets). Look for brown signs for the Blue Ridge Parkway and The N.C. Arboretum. Turn right at light and the entrance to The North Carolina Arboretum is ahead on the right.
  • Hendersonville – Traveling via Brevard Road/Hwy. 191 N, pass under the the Blue Ridge Parkway bridge and turn left at traffic light. The Blue Ridge Parkway ramp continues to the left and the Arboretum entrance is immediately on the right.
  • Eastbound I-40 – Merge right onto Interstate 26 East. Take Exit 33 (marked Blue Ridge Parkway/Brevard Road/Hwy. 191). Turn left (south) onto Hwy. 191. Travel south on Hwy. 191 for approximately 2.1 miles (pass Asheville Outlets). Look for brown signs for the Blue Ridge Parkway and The N.C. Arboretum. Turn right at light and entrance to The North Carolina Arboretum is ahead on right.
  • Westbound I-40 – Merge left onto Interstate 26 East. Take Exit 33 (marked Blue Ridge Parkway/Brevard Road/Hwy. 191). Turn left (south) onto Hwy. 191. Travel south on Hwy. 191 for approximately 2.1 miles (pass Asheville Outlets). Look for brown signs for the Blue Ridge Parkway and The N.C. Arboretum. Turn right at light and the entrance to The North Carolina Arboretum is ahead on the right
  • Please see the website for further directions.

Some of the gardens are:


  • Blue Ridge Quilt Garden - parterre reflecting quilt designs of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
  • Dickinson Holly Garden - a variety of American and non-native hollies.
  • French Broad River Watershed Training Center - Educational programs relating to streambanks and waterways, pasture management, stormwater runoff, and erosion control.
  • Heritage Garden - a demonstration garden for plants used in traditional Western North Carolina crafts, including dye-making, basketry, paper-making, and broom-making.
  • National Native Azalea Repository - a streamside garden representing almost every azalea species native to the United States, with cultivated varieties and hybrids. This repository is part of the North American Plant Collections Consortium.
  • Plant Professional Landscape Garden (2 acres) - a study, training, and testing site that contains 250+ ornamental plants from the Certified Plant Professional exam.
  • Plants of Promise Garden - residential demonstration gardens that include plants being evaluated for the Southern Appalachian region.
  • Stream Garden - a formal setting of trees, shrubs and perennials.
  • Support Facility Perennial Border - perennial flowers.

The arboretum's bonsai collection has about 100 display specimens which include Asian trees, Japanese maple, Chinese elm.