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Horticulture Volunteers

Horticulture Volunteers assist the BioPark horticulture staff with routine garden maintenance and special plant projects at the Botanic Garden and Zoo.

Yellow flowers

Horticulture Volunteers

18 and older

Minimum time commitment:
60 hours per year

Apply to be a Volunteer

Apply Here!

Contact Information

Volunteer Coordinator
[email protected]

As a Horticulture Volunteer you will increase your plant knowledge, practical gardening skills, and learn great gardening tips from our garden staff.  No gardening experience necessary!


  • Anyone over 18 years old.
  • Enthusiasm for gardening, the ability to lift 20 pounds, the ability to stoop and bend, and the ability to tolerate local weather.
  • No gardening knowledge is required; all necessary knowledge is taught.
  • As a safety precaution, all applicants are required to submit to a City of Albuquerque background check before they can begin volunteering and an annual security check thereafter.


Horticulture Volunteers, perform a variety of duties, including but not limited to: weeding, general clean-up, dead-heading, sweeping, raking, planting, potting, plant removal, and pruning. Volunteers will not use power tools or chemicals.

Minimum Time

  • Horticulture Volunteers may work any time the horticulture staff is on duty, Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.
  • Hours may vary based on the season and staff availability.
  • Horticulture Volunteers will be assigned to a gardener or area and will work with the Volunteer Specialist to set-up a weekly schedule.
  • A regular weekly schedule consisting of a minimum two hour shift per week is strongly recommended.
  • Horticulture Volunteers must notify education staff if they are not available to make a shift.
  • A minimum of 60 hours a year is required to receive recognition as a BioPark Education Volunteer. At least 30 hours must be spent working as a Horticulture Volunteer; the remaining 30 hours may also be spent working in horticulture or doing support work for BioPark Education.
  • Volunteers are responsible for tracking their own hours on an honor system.


  • Training to become a Horticulture Volunteer begins with a required half day orientation that provides information about the BioPark and the Horticulture Volunteer duties.
  • Horticulture Volunteers are paired with a member of the horticulture staff to perform their duties, additional on-the-job training will be provided by those staff members.


  • All BioPark Volunteers will be issued a volunteer identification badge which must be worn while a volunteer is on duty.
  • Blue jeans are considered appropriate, cut-offs or short shorts are not considered appropriate.
  • Close-toed shoes are required; no sandals.
  • Volunteers are encouraged to bring their own kneeling pad, small gardening tools (pruning clippers, weeding tool, trowel, etc.)
  • A hat, work gloves, sun block and water bottle are all encouraged.
  • Volunteers are responsible for acquiring and wearing the BioPark Volunteer uniform while on duty.


  • BioPark Education Volunteers have the opportunity to do meaningful and gratifying education work with thousands of visitors to the BioPark, which is an important intangible benefit.
  • The volunteer identification badge allows the volunteer free regular admission to all BioPark facilities (Zoo, Aquarium, and Botanic Garden).
  • Volunteers can receive a discount at food concessions and gift stores with their valid Education Volunteer ID during regular operating hours.
  • Volunteers are offered discounts to all fee-based BioPark Education programs and are invited to special volunteer-only events throughout the year.
  • After the end of each calendar year, volunteers are awarded recognition items for their service, based on the completion of the minimum 60 hours of service.


Resources exist throughout the BioPark to help Volunteers fulfill their duties.

  • Education staff is available to provide assistance.
  • The Education libraries are located in the Zoo and Aquarium/Botanic Garden Education Buildings; they are a resource available to all BioPark Volunteers.
  • Monthly Education meetings are held on the first Thursday and first Saturday of each month, and all Volunteers are encouraged to attend. Meetings cover current BioPark happenings and facility-specific information. The same material is discussed at both sessions.
  • Volunteers are also invited to attend monthly Brown Bag Seminars following the meetings, as well as other lectures and workshops throughout the year.
  • Volunteers receive our monthly BioPark Volunteer update to stay current on all BioPark news, Education programs, events, and resources.
  • Information on current events is posted in the Volunteer Communication Room at the AQ/BG Education Building or in the Zoo Education Barn.


BioPark Education Volunteers are responsible for acquiring their own uniform clothing and general gardening tools.

How To Apply

Fill out an online volunteer application:

  • Teen Online Application
  • Adult Online Application

Online volunteer application coming soon. Please contact the Volunteer Specialist.

Our Education Department will review your application and notify you about openings and training dates.

What to Bring

Bring a photo ID to accompany the background check form. This training includes a one-hour tour of the Botanic Garden, so please bring a water bottle, hat and sunscreen.