Welcome to Virginia Western's Community Arboretum

Virginia Western Community College

The Community Arboretum is a two-acre educational garden located on the campus of Virginia Western Community College in Roanoke, Virginia. Eleven separate gardens and plant collections surround a centrally located amphitheater and are home to approximately 700 labeled plant taxa. The garden collections include a Children’s Garden with a plant maze and plant zoo. Our newest addition, the City Garden, includes sustainable features such as rainwater collection systems and drip irrigation. The Arboretum is also an official site for an All-America Selections Display Garden.

For more information, please contact Clark BeCraft at 540-857-6388.

For directions, please refer to our Visit VWCC page.

Arboretum Logo Green

Admission & Hours

The Community Arboretum is open to the public with free admission every day of the year from sunrise to sunset.

See below for special events.

ADA accessible.

2024 Plant Sales

Spring Perennial Sale:
  • Friday, April 5: 3 PM – 6 PM
  • Saturday, April 6: 10 AM – 1 PM
Spring Bedding and Vegetable Sale:
  • Friday, May 3: 3 PM – 6 PM
  • Saturday, May 4: 10 AM – 1 PM
Fall Pansy and Perennial Sale:
  • Friday, September 20: 3 PM – 6 PM
  • Saturday, September 21: 10 AM – 1 PM
Poinsettia Sale:
  • Friday, December 6: 3 PM – 6 PM
  • Saturday, December 7: 10 AM – 1 PM

Sales take place in the Virginia Western Greenhouse and Natural Science Center.

Plant Sale Guidelines & Protocol:

Please visit the Arboretum Facebook page or call us at 540-857-6388 for updates on any cancellations or postponement due to weather or other campus related events.

2024 Events

The arboretum is open to the public from sun up to sun down. Stop by this growing season to enjoy the beauty of the gardens.

Pinwheels for Prevention

Stop by in the month of April to see the large display of pinwheels planted in the Annual Garden by Children’s Trust. Pinwheels for Prevention will be on display for the month of April in recognition of Child Abuse Prevention Month.

National Garden Bureau’s 2024 Year of the Plant Selections featured at the Arboretum:

Join us as we highlight the 2024 Year of Plants selections. Each plant selection will be featured on our Facebook page and on display at the Arboretum.

Roanoke’s Historic Garden Week

On Saturday, April 27th, the Arboretum is hosting Roanoke’s Historic Garden Week. Tour info and schedule can be found here.

All-America Selections Display Garden

Visit the Arboretum this growing season to tour the All-America Selections (AAS) display garden below the City Garden Deck. AAS winners will be planted in all the annual displays throughout the arboretum. Late May to September are the best times to see the annual displays at their peak. Visit us and let us know how well we interpreted the theme. Visit www.all-americaselections.org for more information.


Arboretum News

The Gazebo Project Campaign

Lee Hipp, Dr. Sandel, Clark BeCraft and others in front of new Community Arboretum GazeboA five-year effort to replace the Community Arboretum’s gazebo and replace it with one to last for the ages came to a beautiful close on Sept. 23, 2022. The new gazebo was dedicated at a garden party accompanied by a few afternoon sprinkles and a Roanoke Symphony duet. Arboretum volunteers, donors and Virginia Western leadership gathered to share the history of the gazebo and praise the Educational Foundation fundraising campaign that made it possible. Over the past five years, individuals, families and organizations have bought inscribed pavers to be laid as the surface floor of the structure. With the completion of the gazebo, it can return to its place as a community asset for both quiet moments of reflection and a gathering place where memories are made.

Click here to see a list of Inscribed Arboretum Pavers and their donors.

Help us “raise the roof” with your purchase of commemorative pavers.

Inscribed pavers are still available!

Gazebo Pavers with DedicationsEngraved pavers may be placed with the following contributions:

  • $1,000, 8×8 placed in the floor under the roof of the gazebo. Includes Souvenir mini-brick and a Certificate of Authenticity.
  • $500, 4×8 placed in the floor under the roof of the gazebo. Includes a Certificate of Authenticity.
  • $250, 4×8 placed in the floor under the roof of the gazebo.
  • $150, 4×8 placed in the walkway around the outside of the gazebo.

CLICK HERE to donate to the Arboretum and make your contribution today, OR

You may use this form and send a check made out to the Virginia Western Educational Foundation with Gazebo Project in the memo line.

Mail to:

Virginia Western Educational Foundation
3093 Colonial Ave SW
Roanoke, VA 24015

Please include text to be placed on paver with your check (Maximum of 20 characters per line, including spaces and punctuation. Maximum 6 lines per 8×8 paver and 3 lines per 4×8 paver.)

Text will be engraved in all capital letters and will be centered on the paver.

The Community Arboretum reserves the right to review and approve all inscriptions and to deny inscriptions that are deemed to be inappropriate.

Paver Reservation Form (PDF)

Friends of the Arboretum

Help keep our programs – and plants – alive and growing!

By supporting the Friends of the Arboretum program, you are directly supporting our day-to-day operations, projects and community outreach. You may choose to support the Annual Operating Fund, the Gazebo Project, and the Community Arboretum Endowment Fund.

Friends at the Individual and Family/Dual Level are entitled to the following benefits:

  • Seasonal Newsletter
  • Discounts on seminars, workshops and special events
  • Garden tours to East Coast destinations at a special Friends rate
  • Friends-only designated times during plant sales
  • Volunteer opportunities

Friends at the Sponsor Level are entitled to the following benefits:

  • All of the above, plus
  • A complimentary poinsettia and a spring flowering basket from our plant sales

Friends at the Patron Level are entitled to the following benefits:

  • All of the above, plus
  • Friends Contributor Card allowing reciprocal privileges at over 300 participating American Horticultural Society gardens

Friends at the Benefactor Level are entitled to the following benefits:

  • All of the above, plus
  • A complimentary 1-hour landscape consultation from a member of the Arboretum/Horticulture staff

Give Now!

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Virginia Western Community College

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