Donating Makes a Difference!

When visiting the Arboretum and wanting to make a cash or check gift in appreciation of visiting, stop into the Frances Plecker Education Center and leave your gift with staff. If the offices are closed, go online on any mobile device with internet connection and visit the arboretum website: Under "Get Involved" Select Donate and from that page, use the purple "Give Now" links to make your online credit card gift.

Become a Friend of the EJC Arboretum

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To become an Arboretum Friend, which gives an automatic privileges of American Public Gardens Association member gardens' discounts and also 10% discounts on arboretum plants purchases, give $35 or more. If a larger gift is intended click the "Give Now" button on the left margin to donate using any major credit card. Online giving is appreciated in any amount. For gifts of $1,000 or more, a brass engraved leaf in your, a loved one's, or a business name will be added to a donor plaque in the Frances Plecker Education Center so EJC Arboretum visitors will know of your generosity.

Arboretum friends who give gifts of $35 or more throughout , receive membership with benefits of discounts to other APGA member public gardens. To learn which public gardens participate in the American Public Gardens Association (APGA) Reciprocal Admissions Program, please visit: Better Homes and Gardens Magazine, to encourage the public to support America's public gardens, gives a free one-year, digital or print magazine subscription to anyone donating to the arboretum. Details for the Better Home and Gardens subscription arrive with the arboretum "thank you" letter.

Arboretum Endowment

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The arboretum endowment provides economic sustainability for the arboretum and its operations and development, so that the arboretum can continue supporting future generations of students, both young and old and college-age, who benefit from using the grounds here as an outdoor classroom. Your gifts to the Arboretum Endowment will be invested to help ensure the arboretum's future. Use the "Give Now" button, to give a gift that keeps on giving, and be sure to designate your gift as "Arboretum Endowment." If you would like to know more about giving an estate gift or have questions about how your gift will serve the arboretum, please call (540) 568-4801 or contact the Arboretum Director.

Memorial Trees and Benches

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The arboretum offers dedicated specimen trees as living memorials, and recommends size, species, and location of each memorial tree. The donation for a memorial tree is $1,500. This amount is needed to purchase, plant, water, and maintain until established, and produce signage. Funds remaining are managed for long-term upkeep of the memorial trees, and replacements of unsuccessful tree plants as needed. The arboretum identifies the beneficial site for memorial trees.

Memorial trees are tended for their lifetime and every effort is made to ensure they thrive. The arboretum replaces failed trees up to five years after planting. If failure occurs after the fifth year, additional negotiated donor contribution is necessary to replant a replacement tree.

Signage is consistent with arboretum tree labeling. Honoree recognition is important, is secondary to species identification labeling, and is brief and discrete. The arboretum is a public scientific research preserve and garden, and the emphasis rightly is on the educational aspect of memorial plantings.

For a donation of $5,000, a memorial bench with a sign naming an honoree, can be placed within strategic gardens or scenic locations of the arboretum. The memorial bench donation is priced to include ongoing maintenance of the bench over its manufacturer's lifetime. Benches vary and may be sculpted concrete or wooden.

If while browsing today or at any time a dedicated tree living memorial or memorial bench is desired, click the "Give Now" button on the left to donate using a charge card. Once your donation is received, we'll be in touch with honorary tree donors to begin working to create your memorial.

Campaign for Arboretum Accessibility

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A fundraising campaign is underway for arboretum friends who wish to specifically contribute any amount without naming purposes to proposed handicapped accessibility features. A proposed new accessibility feature will be an accessible trail that will connect the Plecker Pond Loop accessible trail to the original parking lot and then continuing that proposed new accessible trail all the way to the EJC Arboretum Pavilion. Any arboretum feature may be negotiated to be major gift naming opportunity as well. Friends of the arboretum wishing to contribute any gift amount without naming to the accessibility campaign, may donate using a charge card and clicking the "Give Now" button on the left. Or a donor wishing to gift for naming purposes may communicate their intent to the Arboretum Director, by using our contact form.

At Home in the Woods

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A new campaign, At Home in the Woods, is underway for arboretum friends who wish to specifically contribute for naming opportunities of proposed new family feature gardens in the oak-hickory forests of Edith J. Carrier Arboretum, designed to be offered in phases, with gardens that will invite children and their grown-ups to discover who makes their home in the woods. Phase One gardens are now available for naming opportunities.

The host of each component garden is the redback salamander, a shy and tiny amphibian found in the wooded slopes of the Arboretum. Unlike other salamanders, this creature spends its entire life on land. The threshold of each station will be marked with an indigenous boulder and identification donor plaque that will also offer a contextual cue to grown-ups that they are welcome to explore each feature. Children can search for the sculpture of their elusive host in his natural habitat (beneath rocks, in logs, etc.) at each threshold at each feature garden as well. To learn about each proposed family feature garden, read more...

Additional Donor Opportunities

For major donors wishing to memorialize their name, or the name of a loved one, a variety of significant architectural and garden features presently in design phase are available as naming opportunities. Naming opportunities will have the honor of positive association with a favored university urban botanical preserve, highly ranked among JMU Alumni and the Harrisonburg and Shenandoah Valley resident and business community. Please phone or email to be referred to appropriate JMU development officers and the Arboretum Director for more information, (540) 568-4801 or contact the Arboretum Director. All major memorial donations for significant feature naming opportunities in the arboretum must be coordinated with the Arboretum Master Plan.

Grounds open free to the public, dawn to dusk, 365 days a year.
The Arboretum offices in the Frances Plecker Ed Center are open weekdays. Calls and emails are answered from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm, except holidays. Check the website calendar for holiday closings.

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Edith J. Carrier Arboretum and Botanical Gardens at James Madison University
(540) 568-3194, fax (540) 568-5115
780 University Blvd, MSC 3705
Harrisonburg, VA 22807