Totally Terrific Treehouses
Come climb, explore and play in our Totally Terrific Tree Houses!
The first tree house you will see is just down the path from our Visitor Center. This tree house features three small cottages built on an 8-foot-tall raised deck nestled among the giant hemlock trunks. Originally built in 2008 by the students from the Williamson School of Free Trades .
Walk through the tunnel of the Imagination Station and enjoy a wonderful view into the surrounding woodlands. Grown-ups are invited to take a break in the amphitheatre style benches as the kids don costumes from our costume box and enjoy putting on a show or playing make-believe. This special retreat was created by Allan A. Myers, Inc. and Pocopson Industries in 2008.
The Tree Hugger house sits at the edge of meadow and forest, encouraging visitors to observe the wonders of each.
With a conservation ethic in mind, Tree Hugger is made of materials salvaged on-site from fallen trees and from reclaimed lumber. It was created in 2009 by Janiczek, LLC and students from Philadelphia University under the direction of Re:Vision Architecture.
Cape May Birdhouse
Cape May Birdhouse
This fanciful human-scale birdhouse is inspired by Tyler Arboretum’s Bluebird Trail, a series of over 40 nest boxes that provide appropriate habitats for eastern bluebirds raising their young. The architectural details and paint scheme recall the Victorian beach houses of Cape May, NJ. Relax and enjoy the meadow in the colorful Adirondack chairs and discover information about bluebirds inside surrounding smaller birdhouses.
Designers and Builders: Sam Burk and Paul Farnschlader
Relax on the bench that rings this tulip tree. The cords that hang through the hexagonal roof are attached to bells suspended in the branches. Kids can create arboreal music by pulling the cords to ring the bells. When no one is here, the wind takes on the role of bell ringer as it stirs the multiple sets of wind chimes hanging high in the branches. Created by a team of Mt. Airy neighbors – a visual artist, an architect and an architecture student – this tree house gives visitors a playful way to interact with the tree.
Designers and Builders: Steve Kelly, John Darling-Wolf, Russell Pierson, Mt. Airy Treehouse Players
Inspired by the amazing tree houses that were exhibited in 2008, dedicated Volunteers working with Tyler’s Horticulture Department decided to create a house of their own in 2009. The result is Backyard Memories.The builders drew inspiration from memories of childhood hideaways where the world of adult rules were left on the ground. This tree house was assembled from recycled lumber and found objects and features a green roof.
Strummin' & Drummin'
Strummin’ & Drummin’ features a giant guitar created from the trunk of a huge fallen scarlet oak. The stump of this same tree enjoys a second life as the base of an oversized drum. This fun exhibit was built in 2009 by the local performance and music education group Makin’ Music Rockin’ Rhythms.
Inspired by an angled, towering white oak, the designers of Outlook created a cantilevered platform that relies on the strength of the leaning tree. An arching suspension ladder of steel cables and bars is counterbalanced against the tree with a web of cables reaching out to nearby trees. The oval platform recalls the shape and structure of a leaf. Like a gigantic leaf held up to the sun, laminated plywood defines the veins against a translucent floor. Designed by PDK Architects and build by Hessert Construction.
Located just off the Scenic Loop, ADA-compliant Fort Tyler opened to the public on May 25, 2013. A unique collaboration among Linn Architects in Media, students from The Williamson Free School of Mechanical Trades and Toll Brothers, Fort Tyler is situated among a grove of trees with a catwalk bridge leading to a fort-like structure 13-feet high. This tree house recalls childhood memories of building traditional backyard tree houses and forts. From images of medieval majesty to pioneer wilderness, Fort Tyler beckons the imagination to run free.
Fort Tyler was made possible by the following sponsors:
Tulip Tree House
The Butterfly House offers visitors a unique opportunity to learn about, photograph and get a close-up look at local butterflies in all stages of development. The exhibit features a 1,400-square-foot Butterfly House filled with natives including monarchs, sulphurs, hairstreaks, red-spotted purples, great spangled fritillaries, painted ladies and swallowtails. The exhibit includes extensive plantings that feed both butterflies and caterpillars.
The goal of Tyler’s Butterfly House exhibit is to promote greater understanding about a significant aspect of ecology and human interaction with the natural world.
The Butterfly House exhibit is free with the price of a regular admission to the Arboretum and open seasonally through the months of July and August.
In 2013, the Butterfly House will open for visitors on Saturday, June 29 for the summer season.
The Stopford Family Meadow is a meadow labyrinth that invites adventurers to travel its paths to find their way to the center. The meadow grasses are mown in the winter. In spring the maze is filled with daffodils and by mid-summer the grasses and wildflowers have grown high to once again create the walls of the maze. Along the paths and around the maze perimeter there are Discovery Stations that educate and entertain. From the Raptor Roost, located at far end of the Maze, visitors can get an “eagle’s eye” perspective of the meadow. And the nearby Basking Circle is the perfect place to look for a sleepy snake or pretend the stone enclosure is a fort, castle, or other make-believe space.
Sit a Spell: Seats that Tell a Tale
Sit-a-Spell: Seats that Tell a Tale showcased the artistic talent and spirit of our surrounding community, and celebrated nature from the vantage point of outdoor seating. Designed to entice visitors of all ages to “sit, look and see”, it featured both expected and unexpected ways to celebrate nature and enjoy the outdoors from the vantage point of one-of-a-kind chairs, rockers, benches, gliders and other furniture. In addition to seating for adults, a special storybook category for kids focused on fairytales, nursery rhymes and current children’s literature that celebrated the outdoor world. The Lorax, Alice in the Wonderland, the Three Bears, and many other stories were conjured up in this unique display, which took place from May 26 through October 28, 2012. SIT A SPELL was made possible through the generous support of presenting sponsor, NBC10 and media sponsors, County Lines Magazine, 99.5 WJBR Radio, Delaware County News Network and MetroKids
Tyler Arboretum’s SIT A SPELL Exhibit
Delco News Network
May. 23, 2012. 09:00 PM EST