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The Edith J. Carrier Arboretum is location 15 on the tour. The following description also appears on the Story Map.

The Edith J. Carrier Arboretum, a woodland sanctuary on the James Madison University campus, is a public urban garden and forested greenspace that preserves native plant species, provides opportunities for research, and promotes knowledge of the botanical and natural world for people of all ages. In 2015, the Arboretum’s stream was restored using natural stream channel design to reduce erosion, reconnect the natural floodplain, decrease pollutants, and enhance the sustainability and beauty of this campus landmark. The Arboretum remains an educational tool and a living laboratory where JMU faculty and students frequently study both the aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems of this unique urban landscape.


Stormwater Monitoring in the Edith J. Carrier Arboretum: Impacts of Stream Restoration, Principal Investigator: Dr. Robert Brent, Department of Integrated Science and Technology, Undergraduate Research Assistants: Matthew McCarter, Carli Kohler, and Ben Peterson. 2016.

Edith J. Carrier Arboretum Weather and Stormwater Flow Report, Advisor: Dr. Robert Brent, Department of Integrated Science and Technology, Intern: Jeff Ralph, April 2013.


For more information about each course below, search by course number in the Undergraduate Catalog.

Art 104. Drawing I

GEOG 470. Senior Seminar on Global Biodiversity

ISAT 112. Environmental Issues in Science and Technology (General Education Course, Cluster 3)

ISAT 320. Fundamentals of Environmental Science

SCI 166. Environment in Context

IDLS 395. Topics in Interdisciplinary Liberal Studies

PSYC 749. Multicultural Perspectives of Intervention

Example Projects:
Hyman, O.J., Doyle, E.A., Harsh, J., Mott, J., Pesce, A., Rasoul, B., Seifert, K., and Enke, R.A. 2019. CURE-all: Large Scale Implementation of Authentic DNA Barcoding Research into First-Year Biology Curriculum. CourseSource. 

Berg, M. (2019) Urban stream restoration: An evaluation of material processing and conveyance channels (625) [Master’s Thesis, James Madison University]. JMU Scholarly Commons. 

Edith J. Carrier Arboretum Stream Restoration and Storm Water Monitoring, Matthew McCarter and Carli Kohler, Advisor: Dr. Robert Brent, Department of Integrated Science and Technology, ISAT Capstone Project, April 2016.

Dr. Heather Peckham Griscom, Department of Biology, and her students have collected statistical data from a one-hectare test plot of 300 native species trees found within the woodland of the Arboretum. Through this data, they can study the timing of leaf and flower flush in the spring, and they may also track bird migration and arboreal diseases. These data are entered into to the USA National Phenology Network to help document the phenological response to climate change and will be available to the research community and the general public. 

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