The JC Raulston Arboretum is a nationally acclaimed garden with the most diverse collection of cold hardy temperate zone plants in the southeastern United States. As a part of the Department of Horticultural Science at NC State University, the Arboretum is primarily a working research and teaching garden that focuses on the evaluation, selection and display of plant material gathered from around the world. Plants especially adapted to Piedmont North Carolina conditions are identified in an effort to find better plants for southern landscapes.
The Arboretum is an 10-acre jewel that has been largely built and maintained by NC State University students, faculty, volunteers, and staff. The Arboretum is named in honor of its late director and founder, J. C. Raulston, Ph.D., who founded it in 1976.
Gardens not to miss when you visit the Arboretum include the A. E. Finley Rooftop Terrace, Annual Color Trials, Asian Valley, Finley-Nottingham Rose Garden, Geophyte Border, Japanese Garden, Klein-Pringle White Garden, Lath House, Mixed Border, Model Gardens, Scree Garden, Winter Garden, Xeric Garden, and several others.
Plant collections include over 5,000 total taxa (unique taxonomic groups) of annuals, perennials, bulbs, vines, ground covers, shrubs, and trees from over 50 different countries, which are displayed in a beautiful garden setting. Important plant collections include Acer (maple), Aesculus (buckeye), Buxus (boxwood), Cercis (redbud), Ilex (holly), Lindera (spicebush) Magnolia (magnolia), Quercus (oak), Styracaceae (silverbell family), Viburnum (viburnum), and conifers (pines, arborvitae, cypress, etc).