Council of Independent Colleges Historic Campus Architecture Project



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Institution Name: Saint John's University
Original/Historic Place Name: St. John's Arboretum
Location on Campus:
Date(s) of Construction:
1990-present (2006)Habitat Restoration Project Schwietz, Paul
Designer: Paul Schwietz
Type of Place: Landscape site
Style: (Glossary)
Significance: architecture, religion
Narrative: see below
References: see below
1990-present (2006)arboretum (education; restoration of flora and fauna)

St. John's Arboretum is a natural arboretum dedicated to the preservation and restoration of Central Minnesota's native and increasingly rare habitats. Uniquely located on the terminal moraines of the last glacial age, Saint John's 2500 acres abounds with a diversity of ecosystems, including prairie, oak savanna, wetlands, and hardwood forest. Over the last 13 years, the Arboretum has undertaken the extensive Habitat Restoration Project (HRP), working to restore 60 acres of wetlands, 50 acres of prairie, and 40 acres of oak savanna. These last two are particularly important, as only 1% of the state's original prairies and 0.01% of the oak savannas remain today.

A beautiful 1.5 mile loop trail winds through 6 foot tall prairie grasses across the wetlands on a 900 foot floating boardwalk that is the dappled shade of the oak savanna and northern hardwoods. With such diverse conditions, the variety of plants and wildlife make this area a treat to visit through all seasons.

St. John's Arboretum conducts environmental education programs for schools and other organizations.


"Saint John's Arboretum." Online (2006). College of Saint Benedict/Saint John's University, Collegeville, MN.


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Council of Independent Colleges
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Last update: November 2006