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Trees and Nature

Course List

  • Learn to identify trees after they shed their leaves for the winter in this online class from The Morton Arboretum. Monday, December 7, 2020: Access online self-paced materials and Monday, December 14 and Thursday, December 17, 2020, 7:00 to 8:30 p.m.: attend Live sessions online. Or attend our winter class. Thursday, January 21, 2021: Access self-paced materials online and Friday, January 29, 2021, 9:00 to 12:30 p.m. (Central time): Attend session on-site. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Hike the Arboretum’s lesser-known trails with a naturalist guide. Stretch your legs and get some fresh air while you learn about the history of the Arboretum and the plants and animals that call it home. Wednesday, December 16, (SOLD OLD) 2020, 8:30 to 10:00 a.m., or Friday January 22, February 19 or March 19, 2021, 8:30 to 10:00 a.m. Locations vary. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Join us for a FREE orientation to the Natural Areas Conservation Training (N-ACT) Program in ecological restoration. Available online anytime.
  • Learn to assess the invasive species issues at a site, and set priorities for efficiently and effectively managing invasive species in this engaging online class. Thursday, December 10, 2020, noon (Central time).: Access self-paced materials online and Tuesday, January 12, 2021, noon to 1:00 p.m. (Central time): Attend live sessions online or Wednesday, February 24, 2021, noon (Central time).: Access self-paced materials online. (available for 60 days) and Friday, March 12, 2021, noon to 1:00 p.m. (Central time): Attend live sessions online. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Learn the nuts and bolts of excellent nature writing and improve your wordsmithing skills in this online course from The Morton Arboretum. Four Thursdays, January 14 through February 4, 2021, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.: Access live sessions online. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Learn and practice correct pruning techniques for trees and shrubs. Winter is a great time to prune. Bare branches make it easier to assess what needs to stay and what should be removed. Winter pruning also encourages proper spring growth at The Morton Arboretum. Learn online, then apply those skills during a hands-on workshop. Wednesday, January 13, 2021, noon (Central time): Access self-paced materials online, and Wednesday, January 20, 2021, 12:30 to 3:30 p.m (Central time): Attend in-person session or Thursday, January 14 2021, noon (Central time): Access self-paced materials online and Saturday, January 23, 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. (Central time): Attend in-person session. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Learn to identify the common trees you see in local preserves or in your neighborhood in this online-only class from The Morton Arboretum. Third Thursday of each month: November 19, 2020 through March 18, 2020: Access self-paced materials online. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Learn the essentials of woodland ecology and the woodland management techniques necessary to maintain threatened woodland ecosystems at The Morton Arboretum. Thursday, Jan 21, February 18, or March 18, 2021, noon (Central time) Access self-paced materials online. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Learn to call plants by their botanical names and discover the fascinating origins of names in this self-paced online class. Third Thursday of each month: November 19, 2020 through March 18, 2020: Access self-paced materials online (available for 60 days). Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Learn to identify and manage the most common invasive plants in the Great Lakes region at The Morton Arboretum. Thursday, January 21, February 18, or March 18, 2021 noon (central time): Access online self-paced materials (available for 60 days). Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Get the botany basics you need to identify plants in this online, self-paced class. Whether you are a natural resources volunteer or specialist, gardener, naturalist, or artist this class provides the fundamentals you need to get started. Thursday, Jan 21, Feb 18, or March 18, 2021, noon (Central time): Access self-paced materials online. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Journaling is a great way to connect with nature, reduce stress, and improve mindfulness. You don’t have to be a great artist or writer to do it! In this online workshop, your instructor will help you get started, and provide some ways to slow down, observe carefully, and capture what you see with words and sketches. Monday, January 25, 2021, 7:00 to 9:00 p.m.: Attend live session online. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • The Arboretum closes at dusk, so enjoy this special opportunity to see the mysterious forest protectors under the light of the moon. Wednesday, January 27, February 17, or Wednesday, March 31, 2021, 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Get tips from birding expert Denis Kania to improve your bird identification skills in this webinar with The Morton Arboretum. The trick to identifying birds is knowing which details are key to confirming the species. Thursday, January 28, 2021, 10:00 to 11:30 a.m. (Central time): Attend live session online. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Meet the animals that prowl our woods and ponds all winter long. We rarely see them—mink, beaver, coyote, and deer—but they are here. Saturday, February 6, 2021, 9:00 to 11:00 a.m. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Digitally explore the intricacies of the prairie landscape and learn how to restore these signature American ecosystems at The Morton Arboretum. Monday, February 8, 2021, noon (Central time): Access self-paced materials online and Tuesday, February 23, 2021, 12:00 to 1:00 p.m. (Central time): Attend live session online. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • The Perennial Plant Association, the Horticultural Society of Maryland, and The Morton Arboretum are teaming up to offer a virtual gardening symposium with the best writers and most knowledgeable experts in the business. Friday, February 12, 2021, 8:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Central time.
  • Learn the theory and practice of habitat restoration at The Morton Arboretum. This course provides an overview of Chicago region ecosystems, threats to their biodiversity and functions, and management practices designed to restore them and the environmental services they provide. Online classes meet: 12 Mondays, February 22, March 1, and March 22 through May 24, 2021, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. In-person, outdoor learning, field and lab exploration: Six Wednesdays, March 24 through May 26, 2021, 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., and Four Saturdays, April 3, April 17, May 1, and May 15, 2021, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
  • The tallgrass prairie is usually thought of for its diverse community of plants, animals, and insects. Yet, it is also an inspiration for a creative community! Wednesday, February 24, 2021, 7:00 to 8:30 p.m.: Attend live session online. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Explore the lives of hummingbirds and learn to attract them to your home garden in this live, online program from The Morton Arboretum. Friday, February 26, 2021, 10:00 to 11:30 a.m. (Central time): Attend live session online. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • This year we are counting trees, but trees are also counting on you and your students! Learn more about The Arboretum’s 2020 Tree Census Project, as well as find ways your students can get involved in measuring trees in your community, or in their backyard. Friday February 26, 2021, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
  • Join an Arboretum expert for a winter stroll through the conifers. Admire the variety of textures, shapes, and colors of the Arboretum’s magnificent collection of evergreen trees from around the world. Friday, February 26, 2021, 1:00 to 2:30 p.m., or Saturday, March 6, 2021, 9:30 to 11:00 a.m. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Explore the interactions that drive ecosystem function and learn to identify plants, animals, and fungi in relation to ecological habitats at The Morton Arboretum. Monday, March 8, 2021, 12:00 p.m. (Central time): Access self-paced materials online. and Saturday, March 20, 2021, 1:00 to 2:30 p.m. (Central time): In person session meets at Thornhill Picnic Shelter, P-21. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Strengthen your skills leading volunteers in natural areas management with this interactive primer for volunteer stewardship activity planning, group dynamics, safety, and volunteer empowerment. Dates vary starting December 1, 2020, or March 11, 2021. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Learn spring methods for propagating your favorite native plants. Learn how to bring seeds out of stratification, plant in seed trays and transplant seedlings at The Morton Arboretum. Saturday, March 13, 2021, 1:00 to 4:30 p.m. (Central time) Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Illinois is known as the Prairie State, but in reality, the natural communities that make up our state are as diverse as its human communities. Whether you live in Chicago, the suburbs, or the surrounding rural areas, climate change is affecting all of us, though in different ways. Thursday, March 18, 2021, 7:00 to 8:30 p.m.: Attend live session online. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • Discover the principles and practice of ecosystem restoration. Ecological restoration is a process for recovering forests, grasslands, and other ecosystems that have been degraded. Challenge your assumptions and have conversations about ecological restoration with an expert instructor. Wednesday, March 31, 2021, noon (Central time): Access self-paced materials online and Saturday, April 10, and Saturday, April 17, 2021, 9:00 a.m. to noon (Central time): Attend in-person classes at the Arboretum. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.
  • In this single morning workshop for beginners, learn how to find birds, discuss equipment, what to wear, keeping track of your observations, and more. Saturday, March 27, 2021, or Saturday, April 3, 2021, 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Please note: Early online registration is open Nov 24-30 exclusively for Ginkgo Circle, Oak Circle, Hawthorn Circle, Elm Circle, and Thornhill Circle members. Registration opens to all members December 1.