Last month, the University of Rochester was honored to have three visitors from Nanjing tour its gardens. The group came from the Nanjing Botanical Garden through the Institute of Botany at the Jiangsu Province and Chinese Academy of Sciences. Professor Yao Dongrui, PhD, the Deputy Director of the botanical garden, Mr. Peng Feng, the Researcher of Ornamental Plants, and Miss Liu Xiaojing, the Assistant Researcher reached out to the University of Rochester in order to view its extensive span of gardens and trees. They stayed in Rochester for one day and were led on a tour of its horticulture by members of the University of Rochester’s Facilities and Services.

The tour of Rochester began in the conservatory at Highland Botanical Park, designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, where the guests were shown horticulture of the local area, with a focus on the remarkable tree collection. Dan Schied, Horticulture and Grounds Manager, and Mark Quinn, Superintendent of Monroe County Parks, led the tour for the group. Schied remarked, “They were very impressed with the collection of mature trees in Highland Park and also seemed to be quite interested in our bio-detention rain gardens.”

20150608_090901_resizedAfter Highland Park, the group was led on a tour of the Warner Castle and sunken gardens, followed by lunch at the Patrick Barry House and gardens, residence of the University Provost.  After lunch, they were taken on a tour of the University of Rochester campuses and were shown its two Rain Gardens. This was followed by a driving tour of Genesee Valley Park (also a Frederick Law Olmsted park design) and a visit to the George Eastman House and gardens. A private tour of the “in the garden” exhibit by the curator finished the afternoon.

The University has a long tradition of using plants to maintain beauty and is currently a member of the American Association of Public Gardens and the Professional Grounds Management Society, but it was excellent to be recognized on an international level. It was an honor and a pleasure to have distinguished visitors come all the way from China to tour our gardens.


Written by Mariah Greico, Class of 2019


  1. We’re certainly proud of our gardens here in and around the university. Thanks for reading and be sure to check back for more!

  2. University of Rochester’s greens are without a doubt worthy to be showcased to the world. Having viewed photos of the trees, shrubs and other plants myself, I can appreciate the time and effort spent to maintain the beauty of the garden.

    I also think it’s great that Universities like Rochester have their own gardens as this not only adds to the aesthetics of their surroundings, but will also provide habitat to birds and some other animals. I myself have noticed animals and birds enjoying the trees in my backyard. I keep a bird bath in my garden, so I can enjoy the company of my feathered friends anytime I want. We can never go wrong when combining nature with culture and education.

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