East Hanover Avenue near Whippany Road, Morris Township


Traveling NORTH on 287

Take exit 36A - Proceed for 1/2 mile in the Center lane of Morris Ave. East to Whippany Road. Continue to the second traffic light, making a left turn onto East Hanover Ave. Travel for 1/4 mile - Entrance to Arboretum is on the left opposite the Morris County Library.

Traveling SOUTH on 287 Take Exit 36 following the signs for Ridgedale Ave. - Bear right on the exit ramp. Proceed to the light and turn right onto Ridgedale Ave. Proceed to the first light and make a right turn onto East Hanover Ave. Travel for 1/4 mile - Entrance to Arboretum is on the left opposite the Morris County Library.

From New Route 24: Travel WEST to Exit 1A, 511 SOUTH, Morristown. Take right, go under bridge and make right onto East Hanover Ave. Travel for 1/4 mile. Entrance to Arboretum is on the left opposite the Morris County Library


late 19th century  --  Morristown became a fashionable summer address for prominent families of the era.

1881  --  George G. Frelinghuysen, a patent attorney and the son of Frederick T. Frelinghuysen, Secretary of State under President Chester A. Arthur, married Sarah Ballantine of Newark.

1891  --  they commissioned the Boston architectural firm of Rotch and Tilden to construct a summer home and carriage house on property they named Whippany Farm. The Colonial Revival style is evident in such details as the Federal urns and swags, Ionic columns on the porte-cochere and the large Palladian window on the second floor landing.

Mathilda E. Frelinghuysen inherited Whippany Farm from her parents and participated in the plans to convert her private estate into a public arboretum.

1969  --  Whippany Farm was bequeathed to the people of Morris County.


An Arboretum is a collection of woody trees and shrubs cultivated and labeled for educational and scientific purposes. The beautiful 127-acre tract is well known for its rose garden and is an ideal setting for informal picnics and summer concerts. Self-guiding trail booklets are available at the reception desk to enrich your visit to this unique property in the Townships of Morris and Hanover.

Appreciation of Morris County's cultural heritage is enhanced by viewing the elegance of the Frelinghuysen Mansion, an official historic site which now serves as the administrative headquarters of the Morris County Park Commission. The first floor of the building is open to the public during business hours.

Today, Frelinghuysen Arboretum is a regional center for horticultural activities, including the educational programs and a comprehensive collection of botanical literature. The Joseph F. Haggerty Education center and Home Demonstration Gardens have been designed to expand the Park Commission's services to the gardening public in a barrier-free environment.

Further information about programs and membership in the Friends of  Frelinghuysen the arboretum's Colonial Revival estate wide range of native and exotic plants in both formal and informal settings.  

The arboretum is especially well known for its spring lilac collection.

The Griswold family spent summers at the arboretum, which was originally known as Whippany Farm. The farm was donated by Mathilda E. Frelinghuysen in 1969.

Features Ailanthus altissima (tree-of-heaven)
•Heritage Rose Garden Ailanthus altissima (tree-of-heaven)
•Braille Trail Ailanthus altissima (tree-of-heaven)
•Cherry, Holly, Rose collections Ailanthus altissima (tree-of-heaven)
•Barrier-free Education Center Ailanthus altissima (tree-of-heaven)
•Home Demonstration Gardens Ailanthus altissima (tree-of-heaven)
•Azalea and Rhododendron trails Ailanthus altissima (tree-of-heaven)
•Cottage Gift Shop Ailanthus altissima (tree-of-heaven)
Monday-Saturday, 10am-4pm; Sunday, 1pm-4pm (excluding major holidays)


Their literature says:

General Information

A leisurely walk along the forest and meadow paths of the George Griswold Frelinghuysen Arboretum offer the visitor a serene place to relax and to learn more about plants well suited to the soils and climate of Morris County.

There are two self-guided trails through the arboretum. The red trail, the shorter of the two, begins and ends at the Haggerty Education Center, stopping at 28 stations along the way. You can follow the red marks along the paved walk that loops around the front lawn where a collection of Japanese maples stands. The trail takes about fifty minutes and affords you with such sights as the unusual purple-leafed sycamore maple, graceful English yew, and the Babbott Flowering Cherry Collection.

Located about halfway through the trail is the Margaret C. Oneil Knot Garden where carefully pruned plants form an intricate, intertwined design. Knot gardens were popular during the reign of the Tudors.

The blue trail also begins at the Haggerty Education Center, but ends at the nearby parking lot. There are sixty-one stops. The blue trail covers a greater and more diverse area of the surrounding arboretum.

Charlotte and Ed Newstead with TBS field trip 9/28/02
* = plants found in bloom

Frelinghuysen Arboretum (Detention Basin Area) 9/28/02:

Ailanthus altissima (tree-of-heaven)
Betula nigra (river birch) planted
Carpinus caroliniana (musclewood)
Catalpa sp. (catalpa) planted
Fraxinus americana (white ash)
Juniperus virginiana (red cedar)
Magnolia virginiana (sweetbay magnolia) planted
Metasequoia glyptostroboides (dawn redwood) planted
Nyssa sylvatica (tupelo)
Quercus bicolor (swamp white oak) planted
Taxodium ascendens (pond cypress) planted
Taxodium distichum (bald cypress) planted

Baccharis halimifolia (groundsel bush)
Clethra alnifolia (sweet pepper bush)
Cornus amomum (swamp dogwood)
Ilex verticillata (winterberry holly) planted
Nerium sp. (oleander) planted
Rhododendron spp. (rhododendrons) planted
Spiraea alba var. latifolia (meadowsweet) *

Calystegia sepium (hedge bindweed) *
Polygonum scandens (climbing false buckwheat)

Acalypha sp. (three-seeded mercury)
Achillea millefolium (yarrow)
Alliaria petiolata (garlic mustard)
Allium vineale (field garlic)
Ambrosia artemisiifolia (common ragweed)
Apocynum sp. (dogbane)
Arctium sp. (burdock)
Artemisia annua (annual wormwort)
Asclepias incarnata (swamp milkweed)
Asclepias syriaca (common milkweed)
Barbarea vulgaris (early wintercress)
Bidens frondosa (devil's beggar ticks) *
Bidens vulgata (tall beggar ticks) *
Boltonia asteroides * (aster-like Boltonia) planted
Chenopodium sp. (pumilio)? (pigweed)
Cichorium intybus (chicory) *
Cirsium arvense (Canada thistle)
Cirsium vulgare (bull thistle) *
Conyza canadensis (horseweed)
Daucus carota (Queen Anne's lace) *
Desmodium sp. (tick trefoil)
Epilobium coloratum (purple willowherb) *
Erechtites hieraciifolia (pileweed)
Erigeron annuus (daisy fleabane) *
Eupatorium fistulosum (trumpetweed)
Eupatorium rugosum (white snakeroot ) *
Euthamia graminifolia (grass-leaved goldenrod)
Galium mollugo (wild madder) *
Hibiscus moscheutos (swamp rose mallow)
Iris pseudacorus (yellow flag)
Linaria vulgaris (butter-and-eggs) *
Lobelia cardinalis (cardinal flower) *
Ludwigia palustris (water purslane)
Melilotus alba (white sweet clover) *
Mimulus ringens (monkey flower)
Oxalis stricta (yellow wood sorrel) *
Phytolacca americana (pokeweed)
Plantago lanceolata (English plantain)
Polygonum hydropiper (water pepper)
Polygonum lapathifolium (nodding smartweed) *
Polygonum pensylvanicum (Pennsylvania smartweed) *
Potentilla sp. (cinquefoil)
Rudbeckia hirta var. pulcherrima (black-eyed Susan) *
Rumex acetosella (sheep sorrel)
Rumex crispus (curled dock)
Solidago gigantea (late goldenrod) * waning
Solidago rugosa (rough-leaved goldenrod) *
Sonchus asper (prickly sow thistle) *
Taraxacum officinale (common dandelion) *
Verbena hastata (blue vervain)
Verbena urticifolia (white vervain)
Vernonia noveboracensis (New York ironweed) *
Xanthium strumarium (clotbur)

Juncus effusus (soft rush)
Juncus tenuis (path rush)

Carex crinita (fringed sedge)
Carex sp. (vulpinoides)? (fox sedge)?
Cyperus strigosus (umbrella sedge)?

Bromus sp. (brome grass)
Dactylis glomerata (orchard grass)
Echinochloa muricata (barnyard grass)
Elytrigia repens (quack grass)
Festuca rubra (red fescue grass)
Leersia oryzoides (rice cut grass)
Panicum clandestinum (deer-tongue grass)
Phalaris arundinacea (canary reed grass)
Setaria faberi (nodding foxtail grass)
Sorghastrum nutans cultivar (Indian nut grass cultivar)
Tridens flavus (purple top grass)

Frelinghuysen Arboretum (Pinetum and More Natural Area) 9/28/02:

Abies fraseri (Frasier fir) planted
Acer palmatum (Japanese maple) planted
Acer platanoides (Norway maple)
Acer pseudoplatanus (sycamore maple) planted
Acer saccharum (sugar maple)
Ailanthus altissima (tree-of-heaven)
Betula alleghaniensis (yellow birch)
Betula lenta (black birch)
Carpinus caroliniana (musclewood)
Carya ovata (shagbark hickory)
Catalpa sp. (catalpa)
Cephalotaxus fortunii (Chinese plum yew) planted
Fagus grandifolia (American beech)
Fraxinus americana (white ash)
Hovenia dulcis (Japanese raisin tree) planted
Ilex opaca (American holly)
Juglans cinerea (butternut walnut)
Juglans nigra (black walnut)
Juniperus rigida (needle juniper) planted
Juniperus virginiana (red cedar)
Liriodendron tulipifera (tulip tree)
Phellodendron amurense (Amur cork tree)
Pinus sylvestris (Scotch pine)
Platanus occidentalis (American sycamore)
Prunus avium (sweet cherry)
Prunus serotina (black cherry)
Quercus alba (white oak)
Quercus macrocarpa (bur oak) planted
Quercus rubra (red oak)
Sophora japonica (Japanese pagoda tree) planted
Sassafras albidum (sassafras)
Tsuga canadensis (eastern hemlock)
Ulmus americana (American elm)

Berberis thunbergii (Japanese barberry)
Cornus florida (flowering dogwood)
Cornus kousa (kousa dogwood)
Euonymus alatus (winged euonymus)
Hamamelis virginiana (witch hazel)
Lindera benzoin (spicebush)
Pachysandra terminalis (pachysandra)
Rhododendron spp. (rhododendrons)
Rosa multiflora (multiflora rose)
Rubus flagellaris (northern dewberry)
Rubus phoenicolasius (wineberry)
Rubus sp. (blackberry)
Viburnum acerifolium (maple-leaf viburnum)
Viburnum prunifolium (blackhaw viburnum)

Ampelopsis brevipedunculata (porcelainberry)
Celastrus orbiculatus (Asiatic bittersweet)
Hedera helix (English ivy)
Lonicera japonica (Japanese honeysuckle)
Parthenocissus quinquefolia (Virginia creeper)
Smilax rotundifolia (round-leaved greenbrier)
Toxicodendron radicans (poison ivy)
Vinca minor (periwinkle)
Wisteria sp. (wisteria) 13 leaflets

Acalypha sp. (three-seeded mercury)
Achillea millefolium (common yarrow)
Ajuga reptans (bugleweed)
Alliaria petiolata (garlic mustard)
Anthriscus sylvestris (wild chervil)
Apocynum sp. (dogbane)
Aster divaricatus (white wood aster) *
Aster lowrieanus (Lowry's aster) *
Aster racemosus (small-headed aster) *
Chelidonium majus (celandine)
Cirsium vulgare (bull thistle) *
Commelina communis (Asiatic dayflower) *
Epifagus virginiana (beech drops)
Eupatorium rugosum (white snakeroot) *
Hesperis matronalis (dame's rocket)
Impatiens sp. (jewelweed)
Lamiastrum galeobdolon (golden dead nettle)
Leonurus cardiaca (motherwort)
Linaria vulgaris (butter-and-eggs)
Lythrum salicaria (purple loosestrife) * waning
Maianthemum canadense (Canada mayflower)
Oxalis stricta (yellow wood sorrel) *
Phytolacca americana (pokeweed)
Pilea pumila (clearweed)
Polygonum cespitosum (cespitose smartweed) *
Polygonum cuspidatum (Japanese knotweed)
Polygonum virginianum (jumpseed)
Prunella vulgaris (self-heal) *
Rumex obtusifolius (broad dock)
Solidago caesia (blue-stem goldenrod) *
Solidago rugosa (rough-leaved goldenrod) *
Symplocarpus foetidus (skunk cabbage)
Tanecetum vulgare (common tansy)
Trichostema dichotomum (blue curls ) *
Urtica dioica v. dioica (stinging nettle)
Uvularia sessilifolia (sessile bellwort)
Verbascum thapsus (common mullein)
Vicia cracca (cow vetch) *
Viola sp. (a white violet) *

Juncus tenuis (path rush)

Carex laxiflora (loose-flowered sedge type)
Carex ovales type (ovales type sedge)
Carex pensylvanica (Pennsylvania sedge)

Bromus inermis (smooth brome grass)
Eleusine indica (zipper grass)
Elymus hystrix (bottle brush grass)
Microstegium vimineum (Japanese stilt grass)
Panicum clandestinum (deer-tongue grass)
Panicum virgatum (switch grass)
Schizachyrium scoparium (little blue stem grass)
Tridens flavus (purple top grass)

Athyrium filix-femina (lady fern)
Osmunda cinnamomea (cinnamon fern)
Polystichum acrostichoides (Christmas fern)
Thelypteris noveboracensis (New York fern

Frelinghuysen Arboretum, Morristown, NJ. July 15, 1989.

20 members and friends of the Torrey Botanical Club spent the morning and early afternoon exploring the many ornamental trees and shrubs that make up the arboretum's collection. Those in attendance were quite interested in how to take care of the plants that were observed. Pruning, mulching, fertilizing, and spraying for insect and disease control were discussed.

In the late afternoon the natural areas of the arboretum's grounds were explored. Time was spent discussing the native trees, shrubs, and flower and their uses in the home landscape design. Leader: Aubrey O. Hampton.

September 28, 2002. Frelinghuysen Arboretum, Morristown, Morris County, NJ.

On a cool, clear morning a group interested in field botany met to tour parts of Frelinghuysen Arboretum. The group spent most of the morning investigating the perimeter and the interior of the detention basin near the gift shop area. Many of the plants were planted here, but others have come in naturally.

Some of the herbs in bloom were Bidens frondosa (devil's beggar ticks) and B. vulgata (tall beggar ticks), Boltonia asteroides (aster-like Boltonia), Cirsium vulgare (bull thistle), Daucus carota (Queen Anne's lace), Epilobium coloratum (purple willowherb), Erigeron annuus (daisy fleabane), Eupatorium rugosum (white snakeroot), Galium mollugo (wild madder), Linaria vulgaris (butter-and-eggs), Lobelia cardinalis (cardinal flower), Melilotus alba (white sweet clover), Polygonum lapathifolium (nodding smartweed) and P. pensylvanicum (Pennsylvania smartweed), Rudbeckia hirta var. pulcherrima (black-eyed Susan), Solidago rugosa (rough-leaved goldenrod), Sonchus asper (prickly sow thistle), and Vernonia noveboracensis (New York ironweed).

After lunch the group walked to the pinetum and a somewhat more natural area adjacent to the conifers. One surprise was the great number of Anthriscus sylvestris (wild chervil) plants. The other surprise was the large spread of an escape ground cover the group had found the previous year at Grace Lord Park in nearby Boonton: Lamiastrum galeobdolon (golden dead nettle).

A few of the species found in bloom included: Aster divaricatus (white wood aster), A. lowrieanus (Lowry's aster), and A. racemosus (small-headed aster), Commelina communis (Asiatic dayflower), Eupatorium rugosum (white snakeroot), Solidago caesia (blue-stem goldenrod) and S. rugosa (rough-leaved goldenrod), Trichostema dichotomum (blue curls), and Vicia cracca (cow vetch). An interesting non-blooming plant was Tanecetum vulgare (common tansy).

Of course, the group also saw many beautiful and absolutely spectacular horticultural plants, especially the ornamental grasses, but since the Torrey Botanical Society emphasizes the natural world, the many species will not be listed.

Total attendance was 18. Attendees included Dave Austin, Jackie and Bill Burkhardt, Amy Cichocki, Patrick and Rosemary Cooney, Ann and Tony Creaney, Judith Fitzgerald, Rosea Gray, Joyce Hyon, Joe Labriola, Royal Nadeau, Sarah David Rosenbaum, Emily Southgate, and Michael St. John. The trip leaders were Charlotte and Ed Newstead.