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UW Botanic Gardens Newsletter, Vol 13 Issue 1, January 2017

January E-Flora: Visit, Learn and Grow in the New Year

Upcoming Events

1/5 Artist Reception: An Intimate View of Wild Lands
1/5 First Thursday Tram Tour
1/7 Free Family Weekend Walks: Evergreen Trees
1/8 Free Weekend Walks
1/9 Safe and Sane Gardening Practices
1/11-1/12 Nature in the Balance: An Interdisciplinary View of Urban Area Restoration
1/14 Funny Vegetables Story Time
1/14 Free Family Weekend Walks: Evergreen Trees
1/15 Free Weekend Walks
1/18 Soil! What it is and How it Works for Trees
1/18 Gardening with the Seasons: Winter
1/19 Master Pruner Series - Rose Pruning
1/19 Master Pruner Series - Fruit Tree Pruning
1/21 Free Family Weekend Walks: Evergreen Trees
1/22 Free Weekend Walks
Gardening With Native Ephemerals & Understory Plants
Botanical Watercolor
Free Family Weekend Walks: Evergreen Trees
Free Weekend Walks
2/2 Master Pruner Series - Tree Pruning I & II
2/2 First Thursday Tram Tour
2/4 Bundle Up! Story Time
2/4 Free Family Weekend Walks: Using Our Senses
2/5 Free Weekend Walks
See all events »

Free Public Tours at the Washington Park Arboretum 


Our Free Public Tours include First Thursday Tram Tours, and Free Weekend Walks. Weekend walks offer programming for families with children on Saturdays and adult audiences on Sundays.

Learn about upcoming tours.


On Exhibit in the Miller Library

Richard Dunford Art Exhibit

Photographer Richard Dunford will have images on exhibit featuring trees of Northwest public lands in the Miller Library from January 4th through the 30th.

The artist invites you to a reception Thursday, January 5th from 5 to 7pm in the Library.


New Books in the Miller Library

Snowdrop by Gail Harland


Nature in the Balance - Seminar Next Week

Yesler Swamp by Donna Rodger_521

Photo of Yesler Swamp by Donna Rodger

Nature in the Balance: An Interdisciplinary View of Urban Area Restoration
January 11 & 12, 2017, 8:30am-3pm
Center for Urban Horticulture

This year we are focusing on the challenges of undertaking restoration given the pressures of urbanization, including both human health benefits and safety concerns, tensions between restoration and visitor usage, project sustainability and managing wildlife. Participants and presenters will work together to identify ways to bridge theory and practice as we work toward restoration projects that successfully meet our communities’ ecological, social, and economic goals. Register now!


Registration Deadline January 19! A Garden Connoisseur’s Tour of Savannah & Charleston


Forsyth Park Savannah Georgia

Experience southern charm and hospitality while exploring secret gardens, elegant homes, magnificent plantations, hidden alleys, and quaint, picturesque cobblestone streets in March 2017, with Eve Rickenbaker of the UW Botanic Gardens and Susan McLeod Epstein of the Preservation Society of Charleston.

You’ll spend three nights in Savannah, Georgia and four nights in Charleston, South Carolina. The guided journey will take you to some of the oldest churches, homes and gardens in America, strolling through 330 years of fascinating history and rich culture with fellow garden enthusiasts. Learn more


Winter is the Best Time to Prune Most Trees and Shrubs

Pruning Tools_528

Every winter, we partner with local nonprofit PlantAmnesty to offer their popular Master Pruner Series. Each class offers a deep dive into a specific pruning topic so you know how to get the results you want. Take all 12 classes plus 3 hands-on workshops to become a certified Master Pruner! Classes start January 19.


UW Opens Search for New Botanic Gardens Director

The UW School of Environmental and Forest Sciences opened the application process for the tenure track faculty position of Director for the UW Botanic Gardens. The application deadline is March 1, 2017.

UW Botanic Gardens has an international reputation for horticulture, restoration ecology, urban forestry, sustainable urban systems, conservation and plant collections. It manages 320 acres of collections and research areas, has a staff of over 40, and an annual budget of $2.7 million.

Job Description and Application Procedure


January 2017 Plant Profile: Chimonanthus praecox

Chimonanthus praecox

Due to its sweetly fragrant flowers, wintersweet is one of the most popularly cultivated plants in temperate China. The flowers are used in potpourri as well as to fragrance linen, such as lavender is used in the United States. The essential oils are also used in cosmetics, perfumes and aromatherapy. The flowers are also used in herbal teas as well as in many Chinese folk remedies for ailments from coughs to measles. Much research is being conducted, particularly in China, on the health benefits of wintersweet due to the presence of anti-fungal, anti-oxidant and biocidal chemicals. The name “Chimonanthus praecox” is derived from both Greek and Latin words meaning “very early winter flower”.

Read more about the history and uses of this winter beauty, as well as how to cultivate the plant in your own garden.

Scientific Name: Chimonanthus praecox
Common Name: Wintersweet
Family: Calycanthaceae
Country of Origin: China
Location in the Arboretum: Joseph A. Witt Winter Garden. There are three mature specimens located throughout the Witt Winter Garden. The most prolific blooming specimen is located in the “twig bed” at the southwest corner of the garden.

Glimpse into the past - the Director's Holiday Open House

John A. Wott Carving the Holiday Ham

For 13 years, the Director’s Holiday Open House was a tradition for all University of Washington Botanic Gardens staff (from the Center for Urban Horticulture and Washington Park Arboretum), Arboretum staff from the City of Seattle, all volunteers, Arboretum Foundation board members, and other friends and dignitaries. Want to know who set off the fire alarm? Who brought the best pie? Read on to learn more about these festive gatherings.



Planning a special event in 2017? Keep us in mind for beautiful indoor and outdoor rental venues.

Rare Care has increased monitoring efforts focused on rare plant populations affected by recent wildfires. Read about their findings no our blog.

Mark your calendars now and keep an eye on our Conferences and Symposia page for upcoming programs!

  • March 15, 2017: First Washington Botanical Symposium
  • May 23, 2017: Urban Forest Symposium: Equity and the Urban Forest

The programs of UW Botanic Gardens are supported in large part by private donations. Please consider supporting our work with a gift.

Give a gift today!


E-Flora is a regular online newsletter of the University of Washington Botanic Gardens
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