Nuts and bolts: Volunteer garden guides needed

  • Wednesday, January 7, 2009 4:48pm
  • Life

Be a guide: If you enjoy working with people and have a passion for plants and the environment, you could become a volunteer guide for the University of Washington Botanic Gardens at the Washington Park Arboretum.

Guides receive free training, experience in teaching and public speaking, the chance to work for the premier botanical organization in the region and other perks.

New guide orientation will be from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Jan. 29. Subsequent training sessions will be from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Feb. 5, 12, 26, and March 5, 12, 19.

Youth school program guides teach K-12 outdoor science education programs Monday through Friday from 10 to 11:30 a.m. and 12:15 to 1:45 p.m. Adult tour guides lead visitors on seasonal tours of the arboretum’s world-class plant collections seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Guides are asked to commit to one three-hour shift a week for 12 weeks from March 16 to June 19. Call 206-543-8801 or e-mail for an application.

Watch and learn: If you’re a fan of the Northwest Flower &Garden Show, check out “The Making of a Flower &Garden Show” on the show’s Web site at

It’s a fixed view inside the Washington State Convention &Trade Center in Seattle just before the 2003 show.

It starts totally empty with nothing in view but a single person standing on a naked concrete floor.

Eventually, thanks to time-lapse videography, it begins to fill with everything it takes to create 25-plus show gardens.

Humans buzz about like insects, constructing gardens with sawdust, pallets, soil and potted plants, and tons of hardscaping, including a hot tub in the most visible garden.

Showgoers scurry through at a breakneck pace, followed by what appears to be a labor-intensive take down and cleanup.

The 2009 Northwest Flower &Garden Show will be Feb. 18-22. Tickets are on sale now at

Sarah Jackson

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