Botanic Gardens Conservation International
BGCI provides a global voice for all botanic gardens, championing and celebrating their inspiring work. We are the world's largest plant conservation network, open to all. Join us in helping to save the world's threatened plants.

Friends of Nairobi Arboretum

Search again Edit this page
Kenya - Nairobi

Institution Code: NAIRA

International Agenda Registration: No

BGCI Member: Yes

About the Friends of Nairobi Arboretum

Nairobi Arboretum:-the place of trees ...for nature, ...for people
Nairobi Arboretum occupies a 30.4 hectare site situated about 3 km from the Kenya's Capital centre - Nairobi City, adjacent to State House and bounded by the Kirichwa Kubwa River on the North-west side. It was originally established in 1907 by Mr. Battiscombe, Deputy Chief Conservator of Forests, mainly as a trial plot for fast growing exotic tree species, to meet the high demand of fuel wood for the newly contructed Kenya-Uganda railway line and thus save Kenya's indigenous forests. It was subsequently gazetted as a Forest Reserve in 1932.

Under the stewardship of a succession of Foresters whose policy was to obtain seeds from all over the globe to make as complete a collection of indigenous and exotic trees and shrubs as possible, the initial trial plot gradually developed into an arboretum - "a living collection of trees".

Friends of Nairobi Arboretum (FONA) was founded in 1993, under the umbrella of Nature Kenya (East Africa Natural History Society), since then FONA has been working alongside Kenya Forest Service (formerly Forest Department) to maintain this green gem for recreation, education and scientific knowledge. An environmental education and outreach programme runs throughout the year that involves hosting academic institutions, corporate and general public visiting the arboretum.

Over the years, the Arboretum has become a vital green pocket in the midst of an ever expanding concrete city jungle. It reflects our rich natural and cultural heritage through the more than 350 tree species (indigenous and exotic), more than a hundred resident and migrant
bird species, a multitude of insects, reptiles and small mammals, notably the playful Vervet(Black-faced) and Sykes monkeys. For the innumerable local and international visitors – including increasing numbers of school groups from all over Kenya, this is a place where lungs
can be filled with fresh and clean air whilst you enjoy the tranquility of nature and the lovely bird sounds or the hard to detect Cicadas; while strolling, jogging, praying and/or travelling from continent to continent through an abundance of trees and other plants.

The Arboretum also provides an extremely popular venue for a variety of events such as weddings, concerts, team building, corporate parties, and launches among others.

Main Address:
Friends of Nairobi Arboretum
P.O. Box 44486
00100 GP

Telephone: +254 727 300933, 788 981905
Fax: +254 (0)20 3741049
Primary Email:

Staff Details

  • Director's Name: Mr. William Wambugu c/o Chairman - FONA
    Curator's Name: Salome Angaine
    Plant Records Officer's Name:
  • Total Staff:
    Horticultural Staff Number:
    Educational Staff Number: 2
    Research Staff Number: 1
    Administration Staff Number: 13

About the Garden

  • Institution Type: Other
  • Status
  • Status: Private: No
    Status: State: Yes
    Status: Educational: Yes
    Status: Municipal: No
    Status: Satellite: No
    Status: Trust: Yes
  • Date founded: 1907
  • Physical Data
  • Natural Vegetation Area: Yes
  • Landscaped Area: Yes
  • Total Area: 30 Hectares
    Latitude: -1.2743
    Longitude: 36.8131
    Annual Rainfall: 1000 mm
    Altitude: 1700.00 Metres
  • Additional Locations
  • Satellite Garden Names: Nairobi Botanic Garden

Features and Facilities

  • Herbarium: No
    Arboretum: Yes
    Arboretum Size: 30
  • Micropropagation/ Tissue Culture Facilities: No
    Seed Bank: No
    Published Plant Catalogue: No
    Computer Plant Record System: Yes
  • Open to public: Yes
    Friends society: Yes
    Retail Outlet: Shop: Yes
    Retail Outlet: Plant Sales: Yes
    Disabled access: Yes
  • Number of Visitors: 200000
    Number of Volunteers: 2

Plant Collections

  • Special Collections:Succulents, Orchids, Palms, Cycads, Grass, Glimbers, Indigenous (Adansonia digitata, Bauhinia tomentosa, Canthium keniense) and exotic trees.
  • Invasive Species Monitoring: Yes
    Invasive Species Policy: Yes
    ABS Policy: Yes
    Plant Collection Policy: Yes

Conservation Programmes

  • Conservation Programme: Yes
    Medicinal Plant Programme: Yes
    Ex Situ Conservation Programme: Yes
    Reintroduction Programme: Yes

Research Programmes

  • Biotechnology: No
    Plant Breeding: Yes
    Conservation - Biology: Yes
    Conservation - Genetics: No
    Data Management Systems and Information Technology: Yes
    Ecology: Yes
    Ecosystem Conservation: Yes
    Education: Yes
    Ethnobotany: No
    Exploration: Yes
    Floristics: Yes
    Horticulture: No
    Invasive Species Biology and Control: Yes
    Molecular Genetics: No
    Pollination Biology: Yes
    Seed/Spore Biology: No
    Systematics and Taxonomy: Yes
    Sustainability: Yes
    Pharmacology: No
    Agriculture: No
    Land Restoration: No
    Urban Environments: Yes

Education Programmes

  • Visitor/Education Centre: Yes
    Education Signs in Garden: Yes
    Public Lectures/Talks: Yes
    Education Booklets/Leaflets: Yes
    Guided Tours: Yes
    Permanent Public Displays: No
    Special Exhibitions: No
    Courses for School Children: Yes
    Courses for University/College Students: Yes
    Courses for General Public: Yes
    Education Programme: Yes