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Baker Arboretum

4801 Morgantown Road
Bowling Green, Kentucky 42101


Once a hidden treasure, portions of the Baker Arboretum are now open to the public on a regular basis with an accompanying tour of the Downing Museum. Visitors are invited to walk the first two tiers of the Arboretum surrounding the Museum during open hours Tuesday through Saturday, or make a reservation to see more of the grounds when available.

The Baker Arboretum and the Downing Museum were built on the outskirts of Bowling Green, with views of Western Kentucky University and the surrounding rolling hills. The Baker Arboretum serves as an educational and research facility for WKU.

The collection features conifers, Asian Maples, flowering trees and shrubs with art woven throughout. With over 600 species and 1200 varieties or cultivars, the Baker Arboretum explores the vast palette of plants that can grow in western Kentucky.

Year round interest includes spring and summer flowers, spectacular fall foliage and the subtle beauty of the winter with the interesting shapes, colors and bark of conifers and other trees.


Downing Museum at WKU

4801 Morgantown Road
Bowling Green, Kentucky 42101


The Downing Museum is now open to the public! Officially opened in 2009 by appointment only as a part of The Baker Arboretum, the Downing Museum displays a vast collection of fine art by the late Joe Downing. The collection includes examples of his abstraction and experimentation with different media formats including leather, linen, canvas, old wood, metal, staples, and found objects.

Joe Downing was a world-renowned artist, WKU alumnus and brother of the late WKU President Dero Downing. A Horse Cave, Ky. native, Downing spent most of his life creating artwork in France with studios in Menerbes and Paris. Jerry Baker and Joe Downing were long-time personal friends who collaborated on the design of the Downing Museum.

Visitors to the museum are welcomed to gaze at the art while sitting on furniture by local artist Mark Whitley and then venture outside to enjoy the surrounding top two levels of the Arboretum.


East Main Street Restaurant

339 Main Street
Auburn, Kentucky 42206

Cave City History Center

418 Mammoth Cave Street
Cave City, Kentucky 42127