The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) has awarded funding in the amount of $25,000 to Adkins Arboretum to upgrade and increase the accessibility of its Living Collections Database. These funds were awarded through IMLS’s largest competitive grant program, Museums for America, in the category of collections stewardship. Adkins Arboretum is considered a living museum due to its living plant and land preservation exhibits and its educational mission.
The Arboretum plans to upgrade its current Living Collections Database into a robust, user-friendly database, geographic information system (GIS) and web mapping platform for broader public access and improved future monitoring and management of its living collections. The desired result is an easy-to-navigate Living Collections Database that may be accessed online by all who are interested in learning more about the Arboretum’s flora. The expanded inventory of mapped plants will make it easier for visitors to locate species of interest.
The project will be undertaken over the next 18 months by Adkins staff, including Executive Director Ginna Tiernan, Land Steward Kathy Thornton, Chesapeake Conservation Corps member Blake Steiner, Arboretum volunteers, and local contractors Sylvan Kaufman of Sylvan Green Earth Consulting, Thayer Young of Cicada Systems GIS Consulting and Leslie Hunter Cario of Chesapeake Horticultural Services.
Originally founded as Maryland’s state arboretum in 1980, Adkins Arboretum has operated as a nonprofit since 1992. The Arboretum serves as a model for land management that strives to engage all people in the conservation, appreciation and enjoyment of the Chesapeake region’s native landscapes through education, recreation, art and community events. Located adjacent to Tuckahoe State Park, it operates and maintains a visitor’s center, 400 acres of meadows, woods and wetlands, and five miles of trails under a 50-year lease with the Maryland Department of Natural Resources. The Arboretum’s diverse collection includes more than 600 species of trees, plants, grasses and wildflowers native to the Eastern Shore and the Mid-Atlantic coastal plain. For more information, visit adkinsarboretum.org or call 410-634-2847.