Most events are free, with no registration required, unless otherwise noted.

Outdoor public walks are subject to cancellation due to the following weather conditions: 10 degrees Fahrenheit or less with a wind chill factor; a heat index above 100 degrees Fahrenheit; thunderstorms; or excessively snowy, icy, or muddy conditions.

  • Saturday, March 2

    Ecological Restoration Work Party
    Wingra Oak Savanna

    9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

    Volunteer for restoration activities and learn about prairies and savannas. Tools and training provided. Groups welcome with advance notice. Meet at Arbor Dr. parking lot, off Monroe St. Event capacity is limited, please arrive by 9 a.m. More information: (608) 265-5214 or marian.farrior@wisc.edu.

  • Saturday, March 2

    Madison Reads Leopold: Voices of a Land Ethic
    Community Event

    1 p.m. – 4 p.m.

    Join us for a community reading of selections from "A Sand County Almanac" by Aldo Leopold and writings by other environmental thinkers, including Robin Wall Kimmerer, Joy Harjo, and Camille T. Dungy. Listeners may come and go throughout the event. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Sunday, March 3

    Nature Hike: Walking in Leopold’s Footsteps

    1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

    Visit key sites and learn about Aldo Leopold’s early phenological research and experiments to restore Wisconsin ecosystems during his time as the Arboretum’s first research director. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Sunday, March 3

    Family Nature Walk

    1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

    This walk is a fun, fascinating way for families with children elementary age and younger to explore the natural world. Adults must attend. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Thursday, March 7

    How Art Speaks through Nature
    Winter Enrichment Lecture (in person)

    9 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

    Angie Trudell Vasquez, Madison Poet Laureate 2020–24. Vasquez’s poems weave nature and science together. She has been writing since childhood, and nature and social justice have been recurring themes. Vasquez believes art can move society forward and interact with science and other disciplines in meaningful ways. Fee: $10. Register by March 3.

  • Saturday, March 9

    Ecological Restoration Work Party
    Core Area and Curtis Prairie

    9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

    Volunteer for restoration activities and learn about prairies and savannas. Tools and training provided. Groups welcome with advance notice. Meet at the Visitor Center. Event capacity is limited, please arrive by 9 a.m. More information: (608) 265-5214 or marian.farrior@wisc.edu.

  • Sunday, March 10

    Nature Hike

    1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

    Learn about the land, plants, animals, fungi, phenology, and ecology. Geared for adults, these longer walks may cover some sloping terrain. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Thursday, March 14

    Fungi of the Arboretum
    Winter Enrichment Lecture (in person)

    9 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

    Jessica Ross (she/they), Conservation Biologist, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. This talk will focus on an introduction to fungi, their ecological importance, and the basics of fungal identification. Ross will also discuss results from the Arboretum Fungal Diversity Project, a participatory science initiative, and talk about ways to get started observing and documenting the fungi that you see. Fee: $10. Register by March 10.

  • Saturday, March 16

    Ecological Restoration Work Party
    Grady Tract

    9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

    Volunteer for restoration activities and learn about prairies and savannas. Tools and training provided. Groups welcome with advance notice. Meet at Grady Tract parking lot, southeast corner of Seminole Hwy. and W. Beltline Frontage Rd. Event capacity is limited, please arrive by 9 a.m. More information: (608) 265-5214 or marian.farrior@wisc.edu.

  • Sunday, March 17

    Nature Hike

    1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

    Learn about the land, plants, animals, fungi, phenology, and ecology. Geared for adults, these longer walks may cover some sloping terrain. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Sunday, March 17

    Family Nature Program: Mud Season

    1:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

    This program is a fun, fascinating way for families with children elementary age and younger to explore the natural world. Nature walk: 1:30–2:30 p.m., activities: 2:30–3:30 p.m. Adults must attend. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Tuesday, March 19

    Night Walk: Spring Equinox

    6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.

    Let your eyes adjust to the moonlight, listen to the night sounds, and experience the darkness on this naturalist-led walk. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, register through Eventbrite by March 15: uw-madison-arboretum.eventbrite.com. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Thursday, March 21

    Arboretum Land Care Spring News and Updates
    Winter Enrichment Lecture (in person)

    9 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

    UW–Madison Arboretum Land Care Team. Arboretum land care staff will give four mini-presentations about current ecological restoration work, the gardens as they emerge from winter, and ranger projects. A Q&A with staff will follow the presentations. Fee: $10. Register by March 17.

  • Saturday, March 23

    Ecological Restoration Work Party
    Core Area and Curtis Prairie

    9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

    Volunteer for restoration activities and learn about prairies and savannas. Tools and training provided. Groups welcome with advance notice. Meet at the Visitor Center. Event capacity is limited, please arrive by 9 a.m. More information: (608) 265-5214 or marian.farrior@wisc.edu.

  • Sunday, March 24

    Scenic Stroll

    1 p.m. – 2 p.m.

    This gently paced walk explores ecological communities near the Visitor Center. Themes may include the land, plants, animals, other organisms, phenology, and ecology. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather. Routes are wheelchair accessible when weather allows. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or route conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Thursday, March 28

    Parasites, Pollutants, and People: Does Preserving Biodiversity Protect Amphibians from Diseases?
    Winter Enrichment Lecture (in person)

    9 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

    Jessica Hua (she/her), Associate Professor, UW–Madison Department of Forest and Wildlife Ecology. This talk will consider why some amphibian communities are more susceptible to disease than others. Hua will discuss how pollutants and land use influence biodiversity and amphibian health. She will also explore how art outreach and citizen science clarify human contributions to disease dynamics and also improve public engagement in science. Fee: $10. Register by March 24.

  • Sunday, March 31

    Nature Hike

    1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

    Learn about the land, plants, animals, fungi, phenology, and ecology. Geared for adults, these longer walks may cover some sloping terrain. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Saturday, April 6

    Ecological Restoration Work Party
    Wingra Oak Savanna

    9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

    Volunteer for restoration activities and learn about prairies and savannas. Tools and training provided. Groups welcome with advance notice. Meet at the Visitor Center. Event capacity is limited, please arrive by 9 a.m. More information: (608) 265-5214 or marian.farrior@wisc.edu.

  • Sunday, April 7

    Arboretum Exploration Stations

    1 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

    Feed your curiosity through nature-based activities and demonstrations for all ages, hosted by staff from the Arboretum and other organizations. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center. Presented in conjunction with UW–Madison Science Expeditions.

  • Sunday, April 7

    Nature Hike: Science Expeditions

    1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

    Learn about the land, plants, animals, fungi, phenology, and ecology. Geared for adults, these longer walks may cover some sloping terrain. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center. Presented in conjunction with UW–Madison Science Expeditions.

  • Sunday, April 7

    Family Nature Walk: Science Expeditions for Families

    1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

    This walk is a fun, fascinating way for families with children elementary age and younger to explore the natural world. Adults must attend. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather and insects. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center. Presented in conjunction with UW–Madison Science Expeditions.

  • Saturday, April 13

    Ecological Restoration Work Party
    Core Area and Curtis Prairie

    9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

    Volunteer for restoration activities and learn about prairies and savannas. Tools and training provided. Groups welcome with advance notice. Meet at the Visitor Center. Event capacity is limited, please arrive by 9 a.m. More information: (608) 265-5214 or marian.farrior@wisc.edu.

  • Sunday, April 14

    Nature Hike

    1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

    Learn about the land, plants, animals, fungi, phenology, and ecology. Geared for adults, these longer walks may cover some sloping terrain. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Saturday, April 20

    Ecological Restoration Work Party
    Grady Tract

    9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

    Volunteer for restoration activities and learn about prairies and savannas. Tools and training provided. Groups welcome with advance notice. Meet at Grady Tract parking lot, southeast corner of Seminole Hwy. and W. Beltline Frontage Rd. Event capacity is limited, please arrive by 9 a.m. More information: (608) 265-5214 or marian.farrior@wisc.edu.

  • Saturday, April 20

    Magnolias
    Garden Tour

    1 p.m. – 3 p.m.

    Celebrate the return of spring on a flower-filled stroll through Longenecker Horticultural Gardens’ dazzling collection of over 100 magnolia trees. Tour led by David Stevens, garden curator and Magnolia Society International board member. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Saturday, April 20

    Night Walk: Sky Dance

    8 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.

    Listen for frogs and other night animals, like woodcocks. We can’t guarantee that wildlife will appear, but if they do we may see the woodcock’s fascinating mating ritual known as sky dance. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, register through Eventbrite by April 16: uw-madison-arboretum.eventbrite.com. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Sunday, April 21

    Nature Hike

    1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

    Learn about the land, plants, animals, fungi, phenology, and ecology. Geared for adults, these longer walks may cover some sloping terrain. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Sunday, April 21

    Family Nature Program: Fabulous Frogs

    1:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

    This program is a fun, fascinating way for families with children elementary age and younger to explore the natural world. Nature walk: 1:30–2:30 p.m., activities: 2:30–3:30 p.m. Adults must attend. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Saturday, April 27

    Ecological Restoration Work Party
    Core Area and Curtis Prairie

    9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

    Volunteer for restoration activities and learn about prairies and savannas. Tools and training provided. Groups welcome with advance notice. Meet at the Visitor Center. Event capacity is limited, please arrive by 9 a.m. More information: (608) 265-5214 or marian.farrior@wisc.edu.

  • Saturday, April 27

    Early Signs of Spring
    Garden Tour

    1 p.m. – 3 p.m.

    As trees begin to leaf out, Dutchman’s breeches, twinleaf and rue-anemones might be blooming in the woodland gardens, and prairie-smoke in the prairie gardens. Susan Carpenter, garden curator, will lead this tour of the Native Plant Garden. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Saturday, April 27

    Class: Taking Time for Turtles

    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. Fee: $30. Register by April 23. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Sunday, April 28

    Scenic Stroll

    1 p.m. – 2 p.m.

    This gently paced walk explores ecological communities near the Visitor Center. Themes may include the land, plants, animals, other organisms, phenology, and ecology. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather. Routes are wheelchair accessible when weather allows. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or route conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Saturday, May 4

    Ecological Restoration Work Party
    Wingra Oak Savanna

    9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

    Volunteer for restoration activities and learn about prairies and savannas. Tools and training provided. Groups welcome with advance notice. Meet at Arbor Dr. parking lot, off Monroe St. Event capacity is limited, please arrive by 9 a.m. More information: (608) 265-5214 or marian.farrior@wisc.edu.

  • Saturday, May 4

    Class: Bluebirds and the Arboretum Trail

    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. Fee: $20, register by April 30. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Sunday, May 5

    Nature Hike

    1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

    Learn about the land, plants, animals, fungi, phenology, and ecology. Geared for adults, these longer walks may cover some sloping terrain. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather and insects. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Sunday, May 5

    Family Nature Walk

    1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

    This walk is a fun, fascinating way for families with children elementary age and younger to explore the natural world. Adults must attend. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather and insects. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Saturday, May 11

    Ecological Restoration Work Party
    Core Area and Curtis Prairie

    9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

    Volunteer for restoration activities and learn about prairies and savannas. Tools and training provided. Groups welcome with advance notice. Meet at the Visitor Center. Event capacity is limited, please arrive by 9 a.m. More information: (608) 265-5214 or marian.farrior@wisc.edu.

  • Saturday, May 11

    Dragonfly Monitoring Virtual Training

    10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

    The Arboretum relies on volunteers to help survey dragonfly diversity and habitat quality. Gain the knowledge and skills to participate in this citizen science project and monitor dragonflies in your community. Training participants will learn to identify common dragonfly species, conduct surveys, and record and submit data. No experience needed. Instructors: Arboretum staff, with Wisconsin Dragonfly Society members. Free, registration required by May 6: go.wisc.edu/0v4x0p.

  • Saturday, May 11

    Spring Highlights
    Garden Tour

    1 p.m. – 3 p.m.

    Explore the wonders of spring flowering woody plants in Longenecker Horticultural Gardens as curator David Stevens presents seasonal highlights from the gardens’ expansive collection. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Sunday, May 12

    Nature Hike in the Wingra Oak Savanna

    1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

    Learn about the land, plants, animals, fungi, phenology, and ecology. Geared for adults, these longer walks may cover some sloping terrain. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather and insects. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at Arbor Dr. parking lot, off Monroe St. (No restroom facilities at Wingra Oak Savanna.)

  • Saturday, May 18

    Ecological Restoration Work Party
    Grady Tract

    9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

    Volunteer for restoration activities and learn about prairies and savannas. Tools and training provided. Groups welcome with advance notice. Meet at Grady Tract parking lot, southeast corner of Seminole Hwy. and W. Beltline Frontage Rd. Event capacity is limited, please arrive by 9 a.m. More information: (608) 265-5214 or marian.farrior@wisc.edu.

  • Saturday, May 18

    Friends of the Arboretum Native Plant Sale

    10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

    In the large tents on the lawn near the Visitor Center, shop for more than 200 species of native grasses, woodland, prairie, and savanna plants to purchase, while supplies last. Organized by Friends of the Arboretum, open to the general public.

  • Sunday, May 19

    Nature Hike in the Grady Tract

    1 p.m. – 3 p.m.

    Learn about the land, plants, animals, fungi, phenology, and ecology. Geared for adults, these longer walks may cover some sloping terrain. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather and insects. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at Grady Tract parking lot, southeast corner of Seminole Hwy. and W. Beltline Frontage Rd. (No restroom facilities at Grady Tract.)

  • Sunday, May 19

    Family Nature Program: Flower Power

    1:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

    This program is a fun, fascinating way for families with children elementary age and younger to explore the natural world. Nature walk: 1:30–2:30 p.m., activities: 2:30–3:30 p.m. Adults must attend. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather and insects. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Tuesday, May 21

    Learning Together Family Class: Birds!

    10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

    We will share stories and create nature art and crafts. This class is for preschool-age children and their adult caregivers. Adults must attend. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come seasonally prepared for weather and insects. Fee: $20 per family/group of up to four people. Register by May 13. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Saturday, May 25

    Ecological Restoration Work Party
    Core Area and Curtis Prairie

    9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

    Volunteer for restoration activities and learn about prairies and savannas. Tools and training provided. Groups welcome with advance notice. Meet at the Visitor Center. Event capacity is limited, please arrive by 9 a.m. More information: (608) 265-5214 or marian.farrior@wisc.edu.

  • Saturday, May 25

    Full Moon Night Walk

    8 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.

    Let your eyes adjust to the moonlight, listen to the night sounds, and experience the darkness on this naturalist-led walk (full moon May 23). Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather and insects. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or trail conditions. Free, register through Eventbrite by May 21: uw-madison-arboretum.eventbrite.com. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Sunday, May 26

    Scenic Stroll

    1 p.m. – 2 p.m.

    This gently paced walk explores ecological communities near the Visitor Center. Themes may include the land, plants, animals, other organisms, phenology, and ecology. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come prepared for weather and insects. Routes are wheelchair accessible when weather allows. Walks canceled for unsafe weather or route conditions. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Tuesday, June 11

    Learning Together Family Class: Forest Friends

    10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

    We will share stories and create nature art and crafts. This class is for preschool-age children and their adult caregivers. Adults must attend. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come seasonally prepared for weather and insects. Fee: $20 per family/group of up to four people. Register by June 3. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Tuesday, July 16

    Learning Together Family Class: Brilliant Bugs

    10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

    We will share stories and create nature art and crafts. This class is for preschool-age children and their adult caregivers. Adults must attend. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come seasonally prepared for weather and insects. Fee: $20 per family/group of up to four people. Register by July 8. Meet at the Visitor Center.

  • Tuesday, August 6

    Learning Together Family Class: Everywhere Plants

    10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

    We will share stories and create nature art and crafts. This class is for preschool-age children and their adult caregivers. Adults must attend. Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and come seasonally prepared for weather and insects. Fee: $20 per family/group of up to four people. Register by July 29. Meet at the Visitor Center.