fbpx Monthly Tree Ambassador | The Morton Arboretum

Monthly Tree Ambassador

January 2020
Zachary (Zack) Fisher, Horticulturist I

Zack Fisher, smiling, standing in front of a stack of books in the Sterling Morton Library

What is your favorite season at the Arboretum and why?

It’s no surprise that a staff member who primarily works outdoors would respond that fall is his favorite season.  Zack feels the weather is perfect during the autumn months, and he enjoys seeing the changing colors of the trees.  He does enjoy the bonfires in the winter when working on the winter clearing, and he also likes summer when the grounds are busier, but ultimately, fall would get his vote.   

What is the best part of your job?

Without question, Zack believes that the best part of his job is working in such a beautiful place as the Arboretum.  He has met some amazing people, and he appreciates the camaraderie of his Living Collections crew.  His primary area of responsibility is in the China collection, and he doesn’t interact with too many visitors each day, so for Zack, having such great co-workers is important to his satisfaction in his job.

Do you have a favorite location on the grounds or a favorite tree?

Zack’s favorite area is the Spruce Plot near P11 on the East Side.  It makes for a beautiful hike in the summer.  As far as a favorite tree, Zack finds a bald cypress in his area to be particularly intriguing.  

What do you want visitors to know about The Morton Arboretum and the mission?

One aspect that Zack believes visitors may not be aware of is the number of rare plants that we have in the collections, many of which are not on the main trails.  The Arboretum’s curator participates in many seed collection expeditions in the United States and other countries, and those plants are then placed in our collections once they have had time to grow.  

When thinking of the Arboretum’s Employee Core Values, which one resonates with you and why?

Zack ‘Keeps Learning’ because it keeps his job interesting.  He is always learning about new plants that he comes in contact with every day, and he values learning about them by reading the tree tags or gaining more information about them online.

What’s an insider tip that you’d like to share with visitors?

The Sterling Morton Library is often overlooked, and Zack has enjoyed taking advantage of all the library has to offer.  He has spent many a lunch hour in the May Watts Reading Garden, and using the resources of the library.There are many plant books that one would not find anywhere else.

Share an interesting fun fact about you:

At age 18, Zack decided to teach himself how to play the piano.  Zack’s brother had been playing for years, and one day, Zack just decided he would give it a go, and has been playing ever since.  He is drawn to classical music, and is a big fan of Chopin.