Medford Leas Residents Association
The Barton Arboretum
by Kitty Katzell


Medford Leas is the home of the Lewis W. Barton Arboretum, named for a founder and former resident of Medford Leas. The Estaugh Board’s Arboretum Oversight Committee, composed of board members, residents, staff, and a representative of the Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania, supervises all aspects of the Arboretum to ensure environmentally sound management and to enhance the natural aspects of Medford Leas with resident participation.

All of Medford Leas is part of the Arboretum – the 33 courts, each with a different landscape design; the woodlands, the meadows, the atrium, residents’ private gardens, the farm, Bridlington, Rushmore, the private houses, and the Lumberton Campus. While the primary purpose of the Arboretum is to provide a beautiful landscape for residents, this treasure is shared with those on the waiting list and with the general public. Individuals and small groups make use of "Self-Guided Tours" of the Pinetum, the woodland trails, and other special features; residents also serve as tour guides for Arboretum visitors. Betsy Pennink is the resident artist who maintains the diagrams in each of the courts showing the names and locations of the specimens planted there.

Another goal of the Arboretum has been the development of collections reflecting the diversity of the plant world, as shown by our collections of crab-apples, rhododendron, viburnum, conifers, and hardy, disease-resistant trees and shrubs.

The Arboretum also serves as a horticultural resource for South Jersey, providing information and education through classes, seminars, and Master Gardeners who often work in our Nature Center.

Residents are active in many of the Arboretum programs, such as trail, woodland, and nursery maintenance, the Bird Club, and guiding tours.

In addition to its work with the Morris Arboretum, Medford Leas also works closely with environmental groups, with state and local agencies, and with Rutgers University.

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