COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Ohio State University, with more than 400 buildings stretching across 1,700 acres in the heart of metro Columbus, prides itself in its diversity of educational experiences, public service and economic opportunities. But, amid 50,000 students and about 30,000 faculty and staff, there is one thing that all corners of the campus share: the landscape.
The landscape, says Mary Maloney, is the campus unifier, and as the newly named director of OSU's Chadwick Arboretum and Learning Gardens, Maloney desires to take the beauty of the arboretum campus wide. Chadwick Arboretum is located on the grounds of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences.
"Of all the things we have on campus -- the medical complex, the football stadium -- Chadwick Arboretum has the greatest potential to be one of the more noticeable unifiers of the campus," said Maloney. "The presentation of a university landscape has a big impact on student decisions to attend Ohio State, for example. Chadwick has an opportunity to play a key role in such things as student recruitment, as well as providing educational experiences and a place of respite."
As director of Chadwick Arboretum, some of Maloney's responsibilities include overseeing maintenance, planning and developing of the various gardens that comprise the arboretum; overseeing student, volunteer and master gardener involvement; preserving the arboretum for future generations; overseeing new projects; and planning arboretum events. Maloney was already performing such duties as a staff member before taking the helm as director on March 1.
Those associated with Chadwick Arboretum feel that the promotion was well-deserved.
"All of the staff and volunteers are delighted that Mary has been promoted to director of the arboretum. We all recognize that Mary has poured her heart and soul into the arboretum over the years. She is tireless in her promotion of Chadwick and her passion for our gardens is infectious," said Jenny Pope, the Chadwick volunteer coordinator. "Mary is also a compassionate leader. She gives the staff the freedom to develop our own ideas and the means to implement them. Most of all, I think we appreciate the fact that Mary is a hands-on administrator and a horticulturist to the core. With Mary as our director, I am certain Chadwick will continue to flourish under her leadership and will be recognized as a 'must see' public garden."
Chadwick Arboretum and Learning Gardens is home to one of the most varied collections of flora in Ohio, made up of woody plants, tropical plants, wildflowers, native plants, perennials, more than 300 cultivars of annuals and a collection of over 1,000 native trees. The 60-acre arboretum consists of three main areas: Learning Gardens, Lane Avenue Gardens and Arboretum North.
"Chadwick, designated as an arboretum in 1981, is a pretty young garden by some standards, but it offers a diverse range of horticulture collections," said Maloney. "The arboretum also reflects and illustrates popular horticulture practices, gardening philosophies, and environmentally sound ideas that people young and old, rural and urban can learn from and implement in their own gardens."
Chadwick Arboretum not only showcases plant varieties successful in Ohio, but it is also home to a number of year-round horticultural events open to the general public. Some events being planned this spring include:
• Arbor Day, April 25 at 10 a.m. at Arboretum North. The event celebrates Ohio's native trees by dedicating a new tree each year to the arboretum collection. The event is free and open to the public. This year's tree dedication will honor retirees OSU Extension horticulturist Jane Martin and OSU Extension assistant director Steve Baertsche. Arboretum North is located north of Lane Avenue and west of Fred Taylor Drive near the new Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center.
• Spring Plant Sale Auction and Gardening Fair, May 8-10. The event will take place one block east of State Route 315 on the southwest corner of Lane Avenue and Fyffe Road on the Ohio State University campus.
For more information regarding either event or to learn more about the Chadwick Arboretum and Learning Gardens log on to http://chadwickarboretum.osu.edu.