Arboretum Classes

Classes at the Arboretum offer in-depth coverage of topics and explore ways humans interact with the environment, delving into natural history, conservation, restoration, Arboretum history, and the arts. For paid classes, refunds will be given while registration is open, minus a $10 service fee.

Advance registration is required. You will receive two automated email acknowledgements after you register: One is a payment confirmation, the other is a registration confirmation for the class you’re attending. Save these emails for your records.

Spring 2024 Classes

Taking Time for Turtles
Saturday, April 27, 1 p.m.–4 p.m. One of the oldest groups of reptiles, turtles are also imperiled. Learn about their natural history, conservation, and management, including how to protect nests from predators. Practice using a circular key to identify Wisconsin’s eleven species. Instructor: Rebecca Cristoffel, Cristoffel Conservation. Indoor presentation followed by outdoor walk. Meet at the Visitor Center. Fee: $30. Registration closed April 23.

Bluebirds and the Arboretum Trail
Saturday, May 4, 1 p.m.–3 p.m. Learn about the fascinating lives of bluebirds, their behavior, reasons for their decline, and restoration efforts. Instructor Sylvia Marek, Arboretum naturalist, created the Arboretum bluebird trail in 1988 and has monitored it for more than 30 years. Instructor: Sylvia Marek, Arboretum naturalist. Indoor presentation followed by a walk of the trail. Meet at the Visitor Center. Fee: $20. Register by April 30.

Annual Learning Programs

Native Gardening Conference

Held every September at the Arboretum, the Native Gardening Conference promotes sustainable gardening practices and use of native plants in home landscapes. We inspire and inform gardeners, homeowners, and landowners to create and maintain native gardens or small-scale restorations on their own property. The program welcomes people with a range of interests and experience.

Winter Enrichment

The Arboretum’s long-running Winter Enrichment series offers lectures for naturalists in the greater Madison area as well as for volunteers, friends, and community members. The ten-week series runs February to April. See the Winter Enrichment page for more information.

Friends of the Arboretum Luncheon-Lectures

The Luncheon-Lectures series, organized by Friends of the Arboretum, presents monthly talks with a catered lunch. Friends receive priority registration, but talks are open to anyone as space allows.