A collection of pines in the Houghall Campus pinetum

The Houghall Arboretum & Pinetum

The Arboretum at the Houghall Campus, on the outskirts of Durham City, houses a superb collection of shrubs and trees from around the world.

The World of Trees has one of the best collections of trees in the north of England.

Apart from a few trees that were planted either side of the main drive, soon after the College was opened in 1938, Fagus sylvatica ‘Purpurea’ and one or two commemorative trees, such as the Coronation Oak, Quercus Robur, planted in 1953 by the Conference Hall, the main collection was planted between 1960 and 1973 by the former Head of Horticulture at the College, Jack Cox.

Since 1973, the collection has further developed, with further planting in the Pinetum, and the inclusion of more than one hundred different species of Sorbus and other trees donated to the College by Lord Howick, the University of Liverpool Botanic Garden, the Royal Botanic Garden, Kew, RHS Garden Wisley, the University of Durham Botanic Garden and the Viscount Ridley.

The College is responsible for maintaining the National Collection of Sorbus Sections Aria and Micromeles. Some of these trees are very rare in cultivation and the wild, with only a few specimens remaining in their natural habitat.