Our volunteers work on projects that support and enhance the Garden, educate the public, and keep members aware of ongoing work. Below is a detailed list of ongoing volunteer opportunities. Check out the calendar below for current volunteer opportunities and sign up for our online newsletter to learn what volunteers have been doing.

Interested? Email us at volunteers@kubotagarden.org

Garden Greeters

Greeters enhance the visitor experience by providing wayfinding help and answering questions about the history and plants of Kubota Garden. Garden Greeters will also conduct four seasonal visitor surveys to profile the garden visitors. Greeters will staff a table near the garden entrance each weekend in April and May and for the seasonal visitor survey weekends. Greeters will also help visitors with questions about KGF membership, volunteer opportunities, and plant sales.

Time of Year: Weekends in April and May.

Expected commitment: At least 4, 2-hour shifts.

Qualifications: Ability to work well with the public, ability to articulate with a clear speaking voice, customer service and communication skills, and dependable.

Must complete Garden Greeter training (Saturday, March 24th OR Sunday, March 25th 2018)

Minimum age 18

For more information check out the full Garden Greeter job description.

Interest form: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1Ngp9cE__wlb0B7T9_Lup2sAni4rqZ4scyhP2RmPrbtQ


Tuesdays in the Garden

Every Tuesday at 10AM meet at the gardener’s crew quarters for work in the garden until noon. The gardeners will lead the volunteers in work on projects such as weeding and mulching. This is an amazing opportunity to work with skilled gardeners and Kubota Garden lovers.

Time of Year: Year round

Expected commitment: 2 hours. Drop-ins welcome!

Qualifications: Prior experience weeding and working in the garden is great but we can teach you what you need to know. Gloves and tools are provided. Bring water to stay hydrated!



Nursery Work Parties

The Kubota Garden Foundation nursery supports the fall and spring plant sales by caring for plants before and after each sale. Pre-sale activities include pruning, weeding, labeling, and organizing plants. Volunteers also help unload deliveries. Between sales volunteers help heel in plants and up-pot any plants that have out grown their pots. Some special plant propagation projects occur too. Over the summer volunteers help water all the plants.

Time of Year: April through October.

Expected Commitment: Waterers help 1-2 hours a week in the summer. Other volunteers come for 2 hour work parties concentrated in the two weeks before the fall and spring plant sales. Gloves and tools are provided.

Qualifications: Ability to bend, lift up to 20 lbs, kneel, and rake.



Plant Sales

Kubota Garden Foundation hosts two plant sales each year, spring and fall, which are major fundraising events for the organization. These are fun, fast-paced events. Volunteers help 100+ customers select plants, purchase them, and get the plants to their cars. Positions include: greeter, plant experts, sales, cashier line management, cashiers, carry-out, will-call, parking lot management, and merchandise sales.

Time of Year: First Saturday of May and September

Expected Commitment: 4 hours.

Qualifications: Depends on the plant sale job. For more details about each position check out the plant sale page.



Tour Guides

Kubota Garden Foundation (KGF) hosts two types of tours for visitors: public, the fourth Saturday of each month; and private, for groups of eight or more by scheduled appointment. Tour Guides walk visitors through the Garden, share the Garden’s history, describe its development, point out notable plants, talk about KGF’s activities, and answer questions. Tours average from 1.5 to 2 hours. There are typically 40 to 50 tours provided each year, with the highest volume from April through October.

Time of Year: Year round

Expected commitment: At least one tour per month.

Qualifications: Ability to walk 1 ½ miles on uneven terrain, excellent public speaking abilities, and interest in garden history and design. Must complete tour guide training.

For more information check out the full Tour Guide job description


Visitor Surveys

Once each season, KGF conducts a weekend survey of visitors. Volunteers work in 4-hour shifts each day to set up and take down a tent at the Garden entrance, greet visitors, hand out and receive survey forms, and informally monitor the parking lot.

Time of Year: One weekend in the Fall, Winter, Spring and Summer.

Expected commitment: 4 hours.

Qualifications: Clear communication skills.






Annual Meeting

Each September, at the annual meeting, KGF gathers our donors and friends to celebrate the accomplishments we’ve made in support of the Garden and report our future plans. Help is needed to set up tables, chairs, and canopies, check-in guests, distribute meals, sell merchandise, run a raffle, take photographs, and provide childcare.

Time of Year: One Saturday in September

Expected Commitment: 6 hours.

Qualifications: Some tasks require the ability to lift up to 30lbs.






Kubota Garden has a long and fascinating history. The Archives team tracks important documents, photos, newspaper clippings, and other resources associated with the garden and KGF. Exciting projects right now include helping with research for the production of a historical documentary and book, cataloging historical photographs, and collecting information on the Kubota Gardening Company’s projects.

Expected commitment: As needed

Qualifications: An interest in Kubota Garden and its history. Experience or training in library work, computer familiarity including comfort working with applications like Photoshop, MSExcel and MSAccess is helpful.





Saturdays in the Garden

Join us for our special Saturday morning work parties, through out the growing season. Work party tasks include sword fern cutting in the early spring, rhododendron deadheading in the early summer, and clean up projects around the Terrace to prepare for the Annual meeting in the fall.

Time of Year: March-September

Expected Commitment: Three times a year, 3 hours

Qualifications: Ability to stand and kneel for extended periods of time. Prior experience weeding and working in the garden is great but we can teach you what you need to know.


Photo courtesy of Patrick Lee

Special Skilled Garden Projects

Do you have special skills and talents that you would like to contribute to Kubota Garden? Examples of past projects include a study of the Japanese maples of Kubota Garden, casting the finials for the heart bridge, and installing Japanese irises in the garden ponds. We are always open to suggestions for volunteer projects in the garden. These types of projects are driven by the volunteer’s experience and interests. If you have a project you would like to work on, reach out to the Seattle Parks and Recreation gardener, Marcia High at Marcia.High@seattle.gov

Time of Year: On going

Expected Commitment: Project dependent

Qualifications: Project dependent


Kubota Garden Natural Area

The Kubota Garden Natural areas are 18 acres adjacent to Kubota Garden and managed by Seattle Parks and Recreation in collaboration with the Green Seattle Partnership (GSP). Kubota Garden Natural Areas work party goals include improving the quality of Mapes Creek and the native forest habitat by removing invasive plant and trees and planting native plants. This is part of the GSP’s mission to restore 1,000 acres of the city’s green areas to more natural native states.

Time of Year: Year round, 4 or 5 one-day work parties per year

Expected Commitment: 3.5 hours

Qualifications: Ability to stand and kneel for extended periods of time