Otis Douglas Hyde Herbarium

May 29th, 2012 by Heidi Unruh, UWBG Communications Volunteer

photo Have you ever stopped in to visit the Otis Douglas Hyde Herbarium here at the Center for Urban Horticulture? This amazing resource is home to over 20,000 plant specimens and focuses on horticulturally significant plants for gardens and landscapes. With specimens dating as far back as 1908, you can view native plant specimens taken from the UW campus from before the campus was even built. Or identify a plant growing in your garden today with the Herbarium’s free plant identification service.

In addition to providing plant identification to the public, the Herbarium serves as a resource to University of Washington students learning about plant identification. Students can compare multiple  specimens of the same plant side-by-side to observe finite details between species, something that would be very difficult to do in nature!

Want to support this great resource? Take a little piece of the UW Botanic Gardens home with a one-of-a-kind framed herbarium specimen  or stop by the Washington Park Arboretum gift shop for a pressed flower note card handmade by Herbarium volunteers.  Speaking of volunteers, the Herbarium has a large and active volunteer community and is always looking for new volunteers.

The Herbarium is run by a part-time Research Assistant and is open 20 hours per week. Check the website for current hours.

Save the Date: 2nd Annual Vendor Showcase

May 29th, 2012 by Heidi Unruh, UWBG Communications Volunteer

Looking for a beautiful place to plan an event? Our lawns, outdoor patios, large hall and classrooms are available for events such as  business meetings, conferences, graduations, weddings, bar/bat mitzvahs, auctions, memorial services and parties. Join us for our 2nd annual Vendor Showcase, where nearly 50 caterers, rental companies, photographers, entertainers, florists and many other vendors will be on hand to showcase their specialties.



Event Details:

When:  Thursday, July 26, 2012 from 3 – 7 pm.

Where:   Center for Urban Horticulture, 3501 NE 41st St. (directions).

RSVP:  Friday, July 13. Please call 206-221-2500 or email uwbgfac@uw.edu with your name and # attending.

Price: Free

Questions:  Contact Lauren S. Fortune, UWBG Facilities & Rental Program,  206-685-1706, laurenf@u.washington.edu

See many more photos of last year’s Vendors Showcase at photographer Lauren Kahan’s website.

Meet our Summer Camp Staff

May 29th, 2012 by Sarah Heller, Community Programs Coordinator & Fiddleheads Forest School Director

We are very excited about the Garden Guides we hired to run our summer camps. All three come with a love for and knowledge of the natural world, experience and educational background in teaching and being outside with kids, and a diverse set of qualities that will make for a dynamic and fun-filled summer!

Kathie Bradford

Born and raised in beautiful Northern California, I grew up exploring the creek behind my house and playing with the horses and goats that lived next door.  After graduating from Brigham Young University with a degree in Biology, I worked at a small education consulting company in the Bay Area.  Wanting to combine my love of the natural world and my new-found interest in education, I fortuitously found and was accepted to IslandWood’s graduate residency program.  After spending a year on Bainbridge Island teaching environmental education to elementary school students, I recently moved to Seattle to finish a Master’s Degree in Science Education at the University of Washington.   I’ve completely fallen in love with the Pacific Northwest and I love encouraging students from all over the city to explore the beautiful ecosystems that can be found right outside their back door! This will be my second summer as a Garden Guide.


Rachel McCaffrey

Originally from Portland, Oregon and having lived in Seattle for school, my Pacific Northwest roots run deep. I just graduated from the University of Washington with a degree in both Community, Environment & Planning (CEP) and Environmental Studies. I’m interested in outreach projects that educate and engage people in urban environmental, education, and social justice issues. I am a runner, writer, climber, cook, aspiring adventurer, and – most importantly – a learner. I believe that education should be fun and am excited to share my enthusiasm for environmental education with students this summer.


Dana Radcliffe

I recently moved to Seattle from Virginia and completed my Master’s of Science in Education.  Since my move, I have been able to teach in the classroom, in small groups, and in one-on-one settings covering a range of content areas and topics – everything from the environment to music!  I am always excited and inspired by the vast possibilities working with kids and the opportunity to be a part of the dynamic and interactive process of learning and development.  This summer I look forward to sharing my love of nature with the kids through our hikes and activities.  I am an avid hiker and backpacker and it will be a lot of fun to share the joys of being outdoors and explore the many wonders of nature available throughout the Arboretum.


Sarah Heller

I have worked for the Arboretum for about a year and half and could not possibly love my job any more than I do right now. I was brought on in 2010 to design and develop a summer camp program. We piloted a 3 week program last summer and through positive parent, camper and staff feedback we deemed it a huge success. I am excited this program is growing and that we will spend this summer teaching about, playing in and connecting over 140 kids with the natural world at the Arboretum. Like many in the field of environmental education my love for the outdoors started as a kid building forts, going on forest expeditions with my sister on Orcas Island, using mud for mosquito repellent and experiences with the Wilderness Awareness School. Now, I am grateful I get to share my passion for nature through teaching and program development (check out our new Family Ecology Tour Program). My current naturalist pursuits are expanding my ethnobotanical knowledge, learning some bird ID and song skills, and stretching my plant knowledge to include the higher altitudes as I explore the mountains through backpacking and alpine scrambling.

May Color Appears at the Washington Park Arboretum (Part II)

May 29th, 2012 by Pat Chinn-Sloan

Selected cuttings from the Washington Park Arboretum (May 21 - June 4, 2012)

1) Aesculus pavia   (Red Buckeye)

  • Deciduous shrub to 8 – 12 feet
  • Native to southern U.S.
  • Located along Lake Washington Boulevard near the Japanese Garden

2) Cornus alternifolia   (Alternate Leaf Dogwood)

  • Small tree to 20 feet
  • Native to eastern North America
  • Located between Loderi Valley and Azalea Way

3) Illicium henryi   (Henry Anise Tree)

  • Small tree to 10 – 15 feet
  • Native to western China
  • Located near the Asiatic Maples and the Rhododendrons seedling bed

4) Pterostyrax psilophylla   (Small Epaulette Tree)

  • Deciduous tree up to 45 – 50 feet
  • Native to central China
  • Located behind Azalea Way (bed H)

5) Sinojackia rhederiana   (Jack Tree)

  • Small tree or shrub reaching heights of 15 – 20 feet
  • Native to southeast China
  • Located near the Rhododendron Glen parking lot