Last week, during National Volunteer Appreciation Week, we were thrilled to once again welcome community volunteers back to the landscapes and nursery. This comes after our Arboretum and Public Garden volunteer program was put on hiatus over a year ago due to pandemic-related campus health and safety restrictions.
Our staff and visitors have sorely missed the important work our teams of community volunteers do across so many areas, from weeding and garden care to propagating plants for the plant sales. The impact of all the volunteers, and the value of the 26,000+ hours Arboretum and Public Garden volunteers collectively contribute during a typical year, has certainly been demonstrated.
Volunteers returning to work have completed additional health and safety training this spring and will be working in targeted strike teams in collaboration with Arboretum and Public Garden staff on the areas that need the most urgent care and attention. They are eager to get to work tackling all the spring weeds!
If you see our volunteer teams back in the gardens, they will be wearing safety vests that remind visitors to respect the 6' physical distancing requirement. So from a safe distance, please welcome them back and say "thanks" for all they contribute to making the Arboretum gardens beautiful and safe.
For now, only volunteers who have previously completed the full Arboretum and Public Garden volunteer training program are returning. We are not recruiting new volunteers at this time. Anyone interested in future volunteer opportunities at the Arboretum and Public Garden, can complete our online application and we'll notify applicants of future volunteer trainings.