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|Phone: 757-819-7510||Email: ContactPRT@cityofchesapeake.net|
|Address: 624 Oak Grove Road, Chesapeake, VA 23320|
The Chesapeake Arboretum is located in the heart of Chesapeake and is a 48-acre “Nature's Classroom” that promotes horticultural and environmental awareness through displays, education and research. Dedicated at its current site in November 1996, it boasts one of Virginia’s finest trail systems that wanders through a mature hardwood forest with many varieties of trees and plants.
The Chesapeake Arboretum is constantly seeking to be a responsible protector of the natural resources available at the site. Efforts are continuously made to instruct, promote and embody a “green mindset”. The Arboretum conducts training and educational programs on demand for school and civic groups.
- 8 bridges
- +/- 3 miles of hiking/walking trails
- 3 acre lake – Lake Hughes
- Caleb Williamson Farm House – C1830’s
- Picnic area(s) – tables
- Propagation Nursery
- Large Parking area
- Master Gardener area with greenhouse
- Trails at the Arboretum
The Arboretum is a training ground for the local Urban Forestry groups. It’s a shining example of how a green infrastructure can enhance the quality life by offsetting the ecological effects of land development. The Arboretum provides important social, aesthetic, functional, economic and recreational benefits to all citizens. Starting in Spring 2016, the Arboretum will be programming various recreational activities; such as owl prowls, star gazing, bird watching and more.
The Caleb Williamson Farmhouse was first occupied by the Williamson family around 1844, but was built much earlier – probably the 1700’s, and most likely belonged to other branches of the Williamson family, namely the McCoys and Carsons. Porter McCoy Williamson was the last of the family line to inhabit the farmhouse. Several hundred yards south of the farmhouse, on the western side of Oak Grove Road, just across the street from the Tree Propagation Nursery, is the Williamson family cemetery.
THINGS TO DO:
Self-Guided Tree Walk: you can come visit the 3 miles of trails at the Arboretum and educate yourself on the various species of trees. Many of the trees have been labeled with their common and Latin names so that they can be easily identified. During the fall of the year trees like the Paw-Paw and Fig take center stage producing fruit that rains down along the tree canopy of the trail system. In the spring, the Stewartia grove adds color from its beautiful flowers for all visitors to see.
Volunteers are the backbone of the Arboretum. With 48 acres of trees, trails, picnic areas, barns and the homestead house it would be impossible to operate the facility without volunteer efforts. Scouts, civic leagues, church groups and many others volunteer thousands of hours each year to keep the facility maintained for public use.