Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Amongst the Trees

Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Amongst the Trees

Article excerpt

About a decade ago, Grant Hartman had a decision to make. He owned 20 acres northwest of Evansville, and he wanted to use it for something other than raising cattle. So he planted all kinds of trees and other woody plants to create an arboretum. "We had to do something with the 20 acres," Hartman said. "So instead of raising livestock, we're raising trees. And one thing led to another. This wasn't the original plan, but it has evolved."

Strictly speaking, an arboretum contains only trees. But most arboretums also include other types of gardens as well. The Hartman arboretum has areas planted and maintained by local Master Gardeners.

The term "arboretum" was first used in 1833 in England, though the concept had already been well established. The idea of the arboretum came from Egyptian Pharaohs, who planted exotic trees and cared for them.

Today, arboretums can be found around the world. The Hartman Arboretum is far younger than most, so the trees still need several years to grow.

"A lot of the trees are still pretty small," Hartman said. "It will be a little while before they get to maturity. But we have 17 oaks, and they were some of the first trees to go in, so they are getting up to 15 or 20 feet."

Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Hartman Arboretum will host its first Spring at the Arboretum. Visitors can talk with Master

Gardeners and see some early spring blooms. There is no admission fee.

"Spring is coming a little late this year," Hartman said. "So we don't have as many blooming trees as we'd normally have at this time. We kind of set the date to coincide with the middle of the blooming time. It's going to be at the beginning of the blooming time instead. But I think people will still get the idea and see what is here."

Hartman is retired from Mead Johnson and does not have a background in horticulture. …

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