Tucked away in the prestigious neighborhood of Indian Hill, The Stanley Rowe Arboretum is a hidden gem in Cincinnati waiting for guests to discover. Stroll through 8.9 acres of magnificent, well-maintained gardens taking time to admire the diverse collection of trees and shrubs.
The Stanley M. and Dorothy Rowe Arboretum’s mission is “To provide a beautiful display of evergreens and companion planting in a setting that imparts education about the plants and the history of the Arboretum.”
Things To Know Before Visiting Stanley Rowe Arboretum
- Admission to the Arboretum is FREE.
- The Arboretum is owned by the Village of Indian Hill and is a non-profit organization funded through visitors and endowments. A donation box is by the garage door of the Arboretum garage door should you wish to leave one so graciously. Another preserve in Indian Hill is the Grand Valley Preserve. Grand Valley Preserve is not open to the public.
- There is not to be any picking or cutting of any plants without approval.
- The Arboretum is in a residential neighborhood. Please respect the neighboring properties by staying in the maintained areas of the Arboretum.
- Pets are welcome at the Arboretum, however, they must be on a leash, and dropping must be removed.
The Stanley Rowe Arboretum is open seven days a week.
March thru October 7:00 am – 7:30 pm
November thru February 8:00 am – 5:30 pm
Address: 4600 Muchmore Rd, Cincinnati, OH 45243
1.) The History Behind The Stanley Rowe Arboretum Is Fascinating
The Arboretum was founded in 1926 by Stanley M. Rowe, Sr. and his wife, Dorothy Snowden Rowe. Their love of trees began by Dorothy acting on a single article. The article mentioned that the state of Ohio was advertising that it was giving trees away to citizens that wanted to control hillside erosion. With that advertisement, they acquired 4700 baby trees from the Ohio Agriculture Experiment Station, Department of Foresty. They decided to start collecting trees and shrubs to reforest a ridge previously used for farming and pasture.
Their first trees were Northern Red Oaks, European Larch, Eastern White Pine, and Scots Pine. The Rowe property eventually expanded to 170 acres containing some 1,800 different species of trees and shrubs. The Arboretum’s primary focus is on its conifers collection. After years of trial-and-error plantings, Rowe’s hobby grew to an accumulation of 5000 different types of trees and shrubs.
However, the secondary focus of the Stanley Rowe Arboretum is companion plantings, as they have one of the largest collections of lilacs and crabapples in South Western Ohio.
Rowe Arboretum was one of the lucky few arboreta to receive some of the original 1948 seedling Dawn Redwoods from Arnold Arboretum found in Sichuan province China. They also have an authentic giant west coast redwood slice on display, Mr. Stanley Rowe purchased two of these, one for the Arboretum, and he donated one to the Cincinnati Museum Center.
Rowe liked to experiment and try to grow everything that could live in this climate. Conifers were one of Rowe’s favorite plant types. So much so, that The American Horticultural Society, honored Rowe in 1982 with an amateur citation for the Arboretum, commended its “remarkable collection of conifers, crabapples, magnolias, oaks, and beeches”. It has been designated as a Conifer Reference Garden by the American Conifer Society.
Who Was Stanley M. Rowe
Stanley M. Rowe was born in Cincinnati in 1890, the son of Caspar and Fanny (Sarran) Rowe. At age 14, Caspar went to work as an office boy for Charles Fleischmann, who had just started his yeast business. He rose to become General Manager and Treasurer of the Fleischmann Company. Stanley attended Avondale public school and received his degree from Yale.
Stanley and his wife Dorothy Snowden Rowe discovered their love of trees after by accident. After Dorothy responded to an article in the paper. He died in 1987 at the age of 97, but continues to inspire others through this Arboretum.
2.) Stroll Through The Immaculate Gardens
The Stanley Rowe Arboretum is meticulously maintained. From the impressive gated entrance to the well-maintained trails. The gardens appear to hop out of a magazine with gravel pathways, shady trees, and beautiful blooms for visitors. The Arboretum is fenced with the pathways circling and cutting throughout. In addition, the Arboretum is not usually crowded as it is off the beaten path. However, running and bicycling are not permitted on the pathways.
3.) Take In A Diverse Collection of Trees and Shrubs
One of the most impressive parts of the Arboretum is the vast collection of trees and shrubs found through the property. Each one has a label and name so guests can identify the different species. Don’t forget to visit the original giant west coast redwood slice, which can be found off a pathway.
It is fascinating to witness how many different types of trees can survive this in this climate. A walk through the pathways will yield many natural treasures such as acorns, pinecones, seedpods, and other fun finds. It is perfect for children and can lead to a great learning opportunity.
In conclusion, a visit to the Stanley M. Rowe Arboretum needs to be on every Cincinnati bucket list.
Stanley M Rowe Arboretum