Volunteer Activities

Volunteers provide assistance to the Arboretum in many ways. Some volunteers participate in scheduled work days, working with a group to complete projects such as invasive species control, trail maintenance, collecting seed or planting trees or shrubs. These events are generally hosted on the third Saturday of each month. Other volunteers select independent projects that can be done on their own time. In addition to restoration tasks, they may conduct a bird or plant inventory, monitor a rare species, or lead field trips. If you would like to offer your time or expertise, please contact Arboretum Director Nancy Braker or attend one of our group events. We send out announcements and reminders of our activities, so please let us know if you would like to be on our email distribution list.

Arboretum Volunteer Work Events

Seed collecting

Work events are generally held on the third Saturday of the month, and commonly include activities such as tree planting, seed collecting or removing invasive plants.  Specific project and meeting location will be announced in advance of the event. We also plan other work events on an "as needed" basis.

Upcoming Work Events: 

Saturday, October 19, 2019, 9:00 a.m. - noon. Brush removal and seed collecting.
Help with restoration and management of the Arboretum prairies.  We will be removing small invading trees from our prairie restorations and collecting seed of goldenrod and asters. Wear long pants and closed toe shoes, and other clothes appropriate for the weather. We will supply gloves and needed tools. Meet at the Arboretum Office, 710 Three Oaks Drive. Canceled if raining at or one hour before the event.

Saturday, November 16, 2019, 9:00 a.m. - noon. Get new tree plantings ready for winter!

Help project our new tree plantings from hungry deer by placing a "bud cap" over the growing tip.  A small paper bag hides the bud from deer and ensures our trees keep growing. We provide all tools and supplies, you just need to dress for the weather.  Meet at the bridge over Spring Creek along the paved trail in the Upper Arboretum, just downhill from the Arboretum gate at the intersection of 2nd and Oak Streets. We can work in cold weather but this event will be canceled if raining. Check back here for a cancellation notice in the event of questionable weather.

Future Work Events:

February 15,  2020, 9:00 a.m. - noon
March 21, 2020, 9:00 a.m. - noon
April 18, 2020, 9:00 a.m. - noon
May 16, 2020, 9:00 a.m. - noon
July 18, 2020, 9:00 a.m. - noon
August 15, 2020, 9:00 a.m. - noon
September 19, 2020, 9:00 a.m. - noon
October 17, 2020, 9:00 a.m. - noon
November 21, 2020, 9:00 a.m. - noon

Meeting Locations - Arb Office and Upper Arboretum

We generally ask volunteers to meet up with us at one of two locations: the Arboretum Office, and the bridge over Spring Creek. The bridge over Spring Creek is located near the Arboretum entrance at 2nd and Oak Streets, near the Carleton College Tennis courts. On this map, if you zoom out until two marked points are visible, the upper marker denotes the Arboretum Office, and the lower marker denotes the Spring Creek bridge.

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The following information would have been displayed on a map:

  • Arb Office
    44.4667913579066, -93.1490941643551
  • Upper Arb Volunteer Meeting Location
    Second Street
    Oak Street
    Northfield, MN 55057
    44.459210728367, -93.1468357443646