To support the Forever Jenkins Endowment Campaign, please
send a check payable to:
Jenkins Arboretum & Gardens
631 Berwyn Baptist Road
Devon, PA 19333
or click the button below to contribute via credit card online:
Preserving a Garden Sanctuary and Living Museum
Jenkins Arboretum & Gardens of Devon is one of eastern Pennsylvania’s major horticultural and environmental assets.
It preserves and nurtures 48 acres of Chester County’s rapidly disappearing natural terrain, sited on a ridge above the historic and once-agriculturally rich “Great Valley,” with Valley Forge National Historic Park to the northern horizon.
With a tall tree layer and multi-layered shrub understory, the Arboretum provides the community with a tranquil oasis for the enjoyment of all.
Further, the Arboretum ensures the integrity and conservation of over 10,000 plants in our living collections—with rigorous museum and scientific standards in labeling, mapping, and database record-keeping.
Showcasing Unique Botanical Collections
Jenkins Arboretum & Gardens showcases the area’s native landscape and plantings, primarily of the heath family (Ericaceae) including rhododendrons, azaleas, mountain laurels, pieris, blueberries, and many others.
In addition to native wildflowers, ferns, trees, and shrubs, thousands of rhododendron varieties from all over the world have been planted throughout the gardens.
With a collection enrolled in the North American Plant Collections Consortium, the arboretum plantings include over 2,300 accessions and 1800 taxa, representing all five major divisions of the genus Rhododendron, and 235 Kalmia (Mountain Laurel) plants, representing 48 taxa.
Promoting Environmental Stewardship
The Arboretum and gardens serve as a model for the community in sustainable environmental practices. Through its habitat management practices and Trout Creek watershed preservation efforts, Jenkins Arboretum & Gardens provides working examples of environmental concern.
The Arboretum also offers opportunities to the public for life-long learning through lectures, workshops, and tours. In the gardens, plant diversity leads to biological diversity. As an example, 109 species of birds have been observed in the gardens.
Jenkins Arboretum & Gardens provides practical examples of resource conservation in the design and engineering of its Gold LEED Certified John J. Willaman Education Center building—meeting rigorous standards in water efficiency, energy conservation, use of renewable materials and low-impact construction.
Fulfilling a Vision
Since opening in 1976, the Arboretum has been built on Mr. Jenkins’ intention to honor his wife, Elisabeth and celebrate her life, to make their woodlands into an outdoor showcase and fresh air classroom for public enjoyment and education.
Jenkins Arboretum & Gardens is open 365 days a year and unlike many other public gardens, it is free of charge. This policy makes Jenkins Arboretum & Gardens unique.
Educating the Public
In the Arboretum’s goal to educate the public on the advantages of using native plants in the landscape that thrive in southeastern Pennsylvania, Jenkins Arboretum & Gardens has created its Green Ribbon Native Plant® Awards. Every spring, the Arboretum Horticulture Committee and staff select three worthy native plants (a tree, shrub, and fern or wildflower) that have been grown for many years in the Arboretum and deserve to be planted in home landscapes.
Growing Deeper Roots
The Arboretum’s fundamental challenge is to expand its endowment in order to sustainably secure the future of the gardens.
The Arboretum has successfully grown a modest initial endowment of $250,000 to approximately $10 million today. However, the endowment is currently funding only about 56% of the Arboretum’s operating budget. Since the Arboretum does not charge admission, it must rely on private donations for most of the balance of its operating budget.
Because these all-important sizable gifts from Arboretum supporters are uncertain from year to year, increasing the endowment is critical to building a more secure future and to enabling the Arboretum to expand its mission.
Nearly 40 years of growing the gardens and serving the community as a valuable environmental and educational resource has only been made possible by the generous support from foundations, individuals, and a growing membership of nearly 1,000 members.
The Board of Directors has set a campaign goal for an endowment of $20 million by the year 2020. We hope you will participate in this opportunity to help the Arboretum set deeper roots.
A Deeper-Rooted Endowment Will Allow the Arboretum to:
- Remain accessible and open every day.
- Serve a wider audience and increase Jenkins Arboretum & Gardens’ impact as a refuge and resource—through garden enhancements and more educational programs for the public.
- Better preserve, showcase and promote southeastern Pennsylvania’s extraordinary native species and to care for, protect, and preserve this rare horticultural treasure.
- Ensure the care and preservation of the gardens with dedicated professional staff.
- Grow the botanical collections—achieving plans to expand the native plant collections, with a focus on preserving Pennsylvania’s rare and endangered species, particularly native bog and woodland rarities.
- Achieve sustainable growth for future generations—a prudent 4% or lower spending policy from the endowment allows the Arboretum to remain available to the public in perpetuity.
Jenkins Arboretum & Gardens is a 501 (c) (3) not-for-profit organization.
Contributions are tax-deductible to the extent provided by law.
Thank you for your support.