Stebbins Gulch Towering Red Oak

Towering red oak in South Stebbins old-growth forest

South Stebbins forest is The Holden Arboretum’s largest tract of unbroken, mature forest. Although visitors will not see South Stebbins during a Stebbins Gulch tour, they can sign up for occasional South Stebbins guided tours advertised in Holden’s Leaves magazine. 


The forest covers roughly 800 acres bordering the south rim of the ravine. It shelters many magnificent trees, including red oak, black cherry, chestnut oak, American beech, sugar maple and yellow poplar.  As far as we know, this area was never logged, cleared or farmed, and now provides a rare glimpse of the Ohio experienced long ago by native Americans and early settlers. Today the area is used exclusively for research by visiting scientists, graduate students and scientists on The Holden Arboretum’s staff. 


Visitors will be treated to many magnificent trees on the Stebbins Gulch tour such as tulip tree, red oak, American beech, black cherry and white ash along the trails into and out of the gulch, as well as unusual trees like mountain maple growing within the sheltered confines of the Stebbins creekbed.

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