Thomas Jefferson cultivated 160 native and exotic tree species at Monticello. During his retirement years, he often gave rambling tours of his “pet trees” to his many guests. Peggy Cornett, Monticello’s curator of plants, will lead this natural history stroll among Jefferson’s arboreal treasures — from the mighty white oak and tulip poplar, which he called the “Jupiter” and “Juno” of our groves, to the curious Pride of China and the graceful Golden Rain tree.
Curator of Plants at Monticello
Peggy Cornett, curator of plants, has worked at Monticello for over 30 years. She earned degrees in English and botany from UNC-Chapel Hill and a master’s from the University of Delaware’s Longwood Graduate Program. Peggy lectures on garden history, writes for gardening magazines and professional journals, edits Magnolia for the Southern Garden History Society, and appears on PBS’s “Virginia Home Grown” and “P. Allen Smith Garden Home.” Peggy received the SGHS Flora Ann Bynum Medal for exemplary service in the garden history field and the Garden Club of America’s Zone VII Horticultural Commendation for horticultural expertise, generosity in sharing knowledge and dedication to preserving Jefferson’s botanical legacy.