"Where fun and family take root."
An arboretum is a type of botanical garden focusing on trees and woody shrubs. These living museums support the local biodiversity in an effort to preserve a sustainable environment. They provide educational opportunities through hands-on learning, classroom instruction, or simply observing “what works”. An arboretum is also a place to relax in the contemplative refuge of nature, a meeting place with a beautiful backdrop for special events, a source of inspiration for home gardens, and a cornerstone for community pride. Reflecting the horticulture and history of the area, an arboretum strengthens the regional economy and increases the quality of life for local residents and visitors alike.
There are few places in the Greater Cincinnati, Northern Kentucky area where you can see such a unique arrangement of diverse plants. Encompassing 121 acres, the Boone County Arboretum is also known as Central Park, and was the nation’s first arboretum within an active recreation park setting. The specialized arrangements of plant families and 12 athletic fields are connected by a 2+ mile winding multi-use trail. Don't let the inclusion of sports throw you off though - the beauty and educational value of these plant collections, including obscure selections rarely observed by the public eye, will captivate everyone from the avid plantsman to the average homeowner.
Special attractions at the Arboretum include the Children’s Garden, a Wildlife Viewing area in our Native Kentucky Grassland, and two short woodland trails. Three informational kiosks are located at the main trail entrances to provide horticultural information, Extension class offerings, and our Arboretum map - all free to the public.
We are located just outside Union, KY, only 25 minutes southwest from downtown Cincinnati. We are open daily from dawn to dusk for your year-round enjoyment of our more than 3600 trees and shrubs. There is no charge for admission or parking.
The mission of BCA is “to create a living museum that enriches the quality of life by providing a place for the appreciation and study of plants and the preservation of the natural environment.” Throughout the year we offer various classes and programs for all age groups. In addition, many of the Extension horticulture classes are taught on site at the Arboretum. Keep your eye on this website and our information kiosks for details on upcoming events.