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Beal Botanical Garden’s Red Cedar Restoration Project

In 2023, the Beal Botanical Garden celebrates its sesquicentennial—that’s 150 years of learning, discovering, and making lasting memories. The garden is celebrating this anniversary by expanding our environmental programming. We are restoring native habitat along the Red Cedar River, tackling invasive species across our Campus Natural Areas and ramping up environmental education programs. These efforts are student-driven, science-based collaborations that help make our campus a better place for everyone.

Your Support Will Make a Big Difference

The Red Cedar River is the current that flows through all of us and connects us as Spartans. But the river is more than just a sentimental icon, it’s a living ecosystem, a wildlife corridor, and a habitat for rare plants. Did you know that at least three plant species on Michigan’s Threatened plant list grow along the Red Cedar on campus?

But over the past several decades the riverbank has suffered from erosion and become infested with invasive buckthorn, honeysuckle, and lesser celandine. Help Beal Botanical Garden restore the riverbank in the garden and in our Campus Natural Areas, especially Sanford and Red Cedar Natural Areas.

Project Budget

This project needs staff expertise, student interns (Beal Scholars), and supplies to succeed.

  • For $25, you can buy two native plants to stop erosion and restore the river.
  • For $200, you can support a team member to lead a half day invasive species removal event in Sanford Natural Area.
  • For $600, you can support a student intern for a week to plant native plants along the Red Cedar River in the garden.

Who We Are

Established in 1873, the Beal Botanical Garden is the oldest, continuously operated university botanical garden in the United States and illuminates the interconnectedness between people, plants, and place. This living laboratory in the heart of MSU’s campus encourages learning and exploration of the natural world. With a collection of over 2,000 plants from around the world situated in the heart of MSU’s campus along the Red Cedar River, this lovely natural landscape is perfect for collaborative programming to advance research, teaching, well-being, and public engagement.

Help us celebrate decades of plants and people coming together to make this place such a meaningful part of our campus by attending an event, sharing your own Garden memories with us online, or visiting the Garden throughout the year as each blooming season unfolds.

Make a Gift by Mail:

University Advancement
Spartan Way
535 Chestnut Road, Room 300
East Lansing, MI 48824

*Make check payable to Michigan State University and write “Appeal 23OOPCF1BEALED” in the note section.

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