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The 45 acre arboretum, located on the north side of McCrory Gardens, was designated the South Dakota State Arboretum in 1988 and has a long history of ornamentals research, beginning with the work of some of our earliest researchers, Sam McCrory and N.E. Hansen. Hansen alone was responsible for over 50 ornamental plant introductions to the early Green Industry in this country. More recently, work by Norm Evers and others resulted in the introduction of many new plants including Aesculus x ‘Homestead’, Forsythia x ‘Meadowlark’, Physocarpus opulifolius ‘Nugget’, Pinus mugo ‘Tannenbaum’ and 'Thuja occidentalis ‘Rushmore’. In the Arboretum, they are trying to expand the number and quality of species that can be successfully grown in the northern Great Plains. There are numerous species and cultivars that have not been evaluated; many which are native to harsh environs similar to South Dakota. Species native to Northern Asia have particular value and the Arboretum serves as a long term evaluation site for these selected species.