Edith J. Carrier Arboretum and Botanical Garden at James Madison University

Important Notices

COVID-19 & the VBWTBefore heading out to visit a site on the Virginia Bird & Wildlife Trail, be sure to check if that site has any COVID-19 policies or closures in place. This information is typically posted on a site's own website.

Description

The Edith J. Carrier Arboretum and Botanical Gardens on the James Madison University campus in Harrisonburg is an oasis of serentity in the midst of a bustling urban landscape. With its forested slopes, lowland swale, pond and forested savannah, the arboretum provides a unique setting for a wide divesity of flora and fauna. Thera are over 3 miles of winding trails to explore the 125-acre woodland preserve. The oak-hickory dominated forest hosts a variety of spring and fall migrants, including blackpoll and bay-breasted warblers. Nesting songbirds include white-eyed and red-eyed vireo, white-breated nuthatch, eastern towhee, eastern wood-peewee, Acadian flycatcher, Swainson’s thrush and American redstart. The botanical gardens provide an ever-changing display of blooms attracting a myriad of pollinators throughout the growing season. In summer, the pond is home to swarms of dragonflies and damselflies dominated by eastern pond hawk, widow skimmer, common whitetail, and eastern amberwing. If you prefer exploring nature through educational programs, the arboretum offers classes, lectures, tours, travel programs and other special events.

Directions

Physical Address: 780 University Blvd, Harrisonburg, VA 22807

From I-81 in Harrisonburg, take exit 245. Turn right onto VA-253 E/Port Republic Rd. Turn left onto Forest Hill Rd., then turn left onto Oak Hill Dr. Continue onto University Blvd. Destination will be on the right in 0.7 miles.

Location & Directions

View on Google Maps

Site Information

  • Site Contact: (540) 568-3194, mahonjs@jmu.edu
  • Website
  • Access: Free, Daily - Dawn to Dusk

Birds Recently Seen at Edith J. Carrier Arboretum and Botanical Garden at James Madison University (as reported to eBird)

  • Mallard
  • Red-bellied Woodpecker
  • Blue Jay
  • Carolina Chickadee
  • Dark-eyed Junco
  • White-throated Sparrow
  • Northern Cardinal
  • Carolina Wren
  • European Starling
  • Song Sparrow

Seasonal Bird Observations

Facilities

  • Visitor/Nature Center
  • Environmental Study Area
  • Accessible
  • Hiking Trails
  • Information
  • Interpretive Nature Program
  • Parking
  • Picnic
  • Restrooms