Each year the Arboretum Foundation, with support from our City of Seattle and University of Washington Botanic Gardens partners, presents a horticultural display at the NW Flower & Garden Show. The display garden is an unparalleled opportunity to publicize the Washington Park Arboretum, and it ties in with the Foundation’s role as host for the Opening Night Party & Auction that kicks-off the NW Flower & Garden Show. We have a solid reputation for executing fabulous display gardens, and two years ago we won six top awards, including the Ethel Moss People’s Choice Award for best garden. This year’s garden designers are Bob Lilly and Phil Wood, the same designers who were responsible for our award-winning 2013 garden.
We are looking for a highly-motivated and ambitious project manager to join our team for our 2015 display garden. This is a paid internship, with the possibility to earn course credits. However, the biggest benefit is truly in the experience. This is a great opportunity for anyone interested in doing their own display garden at some point. Your leadership on this project will look great on your resume, and the promotional benefits that come from the show can help you establish a reputation for yourself.
- Schedule and attend all display garden meetings
- Research and locate needed materials
- Shop/place orders for plants
- Pick-up plants to be stored at Jefferson Greenhouse (late October/November)
- Attend the docent training (late January or early February)
- Receive deliveries, if possible
- Rent the truck and oversee the process of moving materials from the Arboretum and Jefferson Greenhouse to the Convention Center (with volunteer help, including drivers, if needed)
- Be onsite and hands-on for the build and tear down (build dates: Saturday, Feb. 7—Tuesday, Feb. 10; tear down dates: Sunday, Feb. 15 and Monday, Feb. 16)
- Coordinate specific volunteer needs with the Volunteer Resources Manager, and help plug volunteers into projects during the build and tear down
- Be primary point of contact for any construction projects being completed by Parks Carpenter Shop
- Plan, schedule, and participate in any advance work parties (i.e. painting of any structures, plant grooming, etc.)
- Background in horticulture or gardening
- Project management experience
- Adept at working as a member of a team, and comfortable carrying out the vision of the designers
- Comfortable leading volunteers
The length of this position will run from August 2014 through February 2015. The time
commitment will vary by month, probably starting with 10 hours in August and increasing with
each passing month. February is when everything comes together, and it will be fun and
rewarding, but intense—expect to work 12-hour days during the weekend of the build.
- Work with an experienced design team to learn the ins and outs of creating a garden for the NW Flower & Garden Show
- Have support and resources from the Arboretum Foundation (budget for the display garden and Foundation volunteers to help with the build and tear down) and our partners (staff support for the build and tear down and to help construct structural elements for the garden)
- Opportunity to network and build connections with the Washington Park Arboretum’s three partner organizations, as well as other display garden builders
- Earn course credits, if that’s an option offered by your program
- $1,000 stipend and reimbursement for project-related mileage
- Two complimentary tickets to the Opening Night Party & Auction
Email your resume and a cover letter to Megan Meyer, Volunteer Resources Manager, at
Submit your materials by July 22, 2014. Please note that applications will be considered on a rolling basis, and we are eager to fill this opening.
Links to Stories of Our Past Display Gardens
"NW Flower & Garden Show: Winning ideas for your garden” by The Oregonian
“A Plantsman’s Garden Takes the Big Prize, an Inspired Hobbit Hut with a New Zealand Plant
Palette A Close Second” by Val Easton