The Hayes Arboretum is an arboretum of 355 acres (144 ha) located in Richmond, Indiana, USA. It is open free to the public Tuesdays through Saturdays, 9:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. It is the primary project of the Stanley W. Hayes Research Foundation, a private operating foundation.
The Arboretum is an educational facility and a managed nature preserve, collecting native wild plants indigenous to Wayne county and the Whitewater Valley Drainage Basin (an area encompassing 14 counties in west-central Ohio and east-central Indiana). It had claimed to include 172 species of trees, plants and shrubs native to the basin, but a 2007 study actually found 525 species. It also contains a renovated 1833 dairy barn, Beech-Maple Trail (3/4 mile), Habitat Trail (1 mile), Springhouse Trail (1/5 mile), Fern Garden Trail (329 ft), and History Trail (1 mile).
The Arboretum was first established in June 1915 when Stanley Wolcott Hayes began purchasing tracts of land to preserve the local old growth Beech-Maple Forest. He began reforesting the land, planting thousands of native trees and creating experimental plots, hoping to restore the land as when the first pioneers arrived. His estate now includes:
- Beech-maple forest — trees up to 450 years old. Approximately 60 acres (240,000 m2) of old-growth forest are located within the Arboretum grounds.
- Oak-Tulip Experiment — White Oaks and Tulip trees, planted in 1922-23 as an experiment in hardwood reforestation.
- Mabelle Hayes Fern Garden — an under story of dogwoods in this area, with a fern garden featuring ferns and their allies native to the Whitewater River valley, including 20 species that have been naturalized along the trail with a variety of spring flowers. A few of the ferns are evergreen and in evidence all year long.
Although not native to the Arboretum, the Arboretum includes the geology collection of a former Earlham College professor Dan Kinsey, who donated his collection in 1968. It contains at least one example of every type of rock native to Indiana.
Hayes Family museum
A small historic gas station that was moved to the site has been restored for use as a museum documenting the history of the Hayes Family and the Hayes Track Appliance Company.
An 1833 dairy barn houses the arboretum's nature center, which houses information and interpretive displays about trees, native woods, flora and fauna. Many programs are offered about regional plants, wildlife, and other nature related topics. Restrooms and a drinking fountain are located inside the Nature Center.
- Field, Barry C. (2000). Natural Resource Economics. Irwin/McGraw-Hill. p. 382. ISBN 978-0-07-231677-3.
- Lindsey, Alton A.; Damian Vincent Schmelz; Stanley A. Nichols (1969). Natural Areas in Indiana and Their Preservation. Purdue University. p. 317.
- Ruch, D. G.; B. G. Torke; K. S. Badger; C. R. Reidy; P. E. Rothrock; R. Waltz; E. G. Urly; J. L. Chance; L. Clicks (2007). "The vascular flora and vegetational communities of Hayes Arboretum in Wayne County, Indiana". Proceedings of the Indiana Academy of Sciences 116 (1): 11–41.