The Idaho Botanical Garden is a living museum dedicated to furthering science education within the scenic setting of its outdoor classroom and into the community. Enrich your life with a variety of continuing education classes year-round for adults and unique educational opportunities for children including field trip tours, botany camp, and pre-school programs.

  • Garden on the Road— When the plants are dormant in January & February, the Garden goes on the road to visit area daycare centers and pre-schools.
  • Youth Group Tours — These tours are designed to supplement school science curricula.  Custom tours are available too.  These tours run Mid-April through October.
  • Saturday Camp — Children aged 5-9 years meet for three hour-long, lively science lessons once a month May through September.
  • Nature Camp — Children ages 4-9 are invited to participate in the games, crafts and nature walks of this morning science program offered in July and August.
  • Adult Education — Over 40 classes for adults are held annually, on a wide variety of topics including plant care, yoga, composting, low water-use gardening, carnivorous plants and creating cement leaves.

Help grow the Garden’s Education Programs by making a donation. Your support will help cover the cost of supplies, lesson planning, and Garden Teachers.

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Upcoming Education Programs…

Rethinking Idaho Landscapes

Sat 24 Feb 9:00 am - 3:30 pm

The Idaho Botanical Garden and the University of Idaho continue this popular and important community forum. Speakers provide attendees with examples, tools and information useful for gardening in Idaho.

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Backyard Composting

Thu 8 Mar 6:30 pm

Compost loosens clay soils and helps sandy soils retain water, promotes soil fertility, and stimulates healthy root development in plants. The only problem is that it can be expensive to purchase. Fortunately you can produce it at home with a minimum of effort; the rate at which it is produced depends upon the method you use. Join us for this comprehensive class on how to assist nature in making compost happen.

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Gardening with Children

Sat 10 Mar 1:00 pm

Gardening with children can be a challenge at times. Join us to learn some strategies for getting them interested and involved in the garden. Bring your inner child and be prepared to engage in some fun hands- on activities too!

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White & Green Tea

Tue 13 Mar - Sun 18 Mar 6:30 pm

Although Black tea is the most consumed tea in the world, White and Green teas are growing in popularity. In this class we will discuss how white and green teas are made, how they differ, and some of the reported health benefits that we hear so much about. Tea tastings throughout the class will demonstrate key discussion points.

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Starting from Seed

Wed 14 Mar 6:30 pm

Discover the magic of seeds and choose exactly what you want to grow in your garden by starting your own plants from seed indoors. This class will offer you the basic information necessary to start many of your own vegetables, annuals, and perennials from seed, including seed selection, equipment, and cultural requirements.

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Raised Bed Gardening

Fri 23 Mar 6:30 pm

This class presents the benefits and advantages of raised bed gardening. A variety of planter styles will be addressed, including permanent and non-permanent structures. We will discuss topics of soil choices, watering, planting for increased yield, and how to clean up at the end of season so the bed is prepped for the next growing season.

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Adult/Child Cement Stepping Stone Workshop

Sat 24 Mar 1:00 pm

Dress in clothing suitable for working with cement. Class is limited to 10 adult/child pairs.

Adult/child pairs work together to create two stepping stones decorated with a choice of materials – leaf prints, tiles, glass pebbles, or pottery shards. Pick up your finished product the following weekend.

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Chinese Herbal Medicine: Not Just Skin Deep

Sun 8 Apr 3:00 pm

Ever wonder what those long, unpronounceable ingredients in your body care products really are, where they came from, and what effect they have on your body? Our skin absorbs what we put on it, bringing those ingredients into our bloodstream. On the principle that if you wouldn’t eat it, you shouldn’t put it on your skin, we will get back to basics in this class, to make natural, nontoxic, and effective skin care products. We will use Chinese medicinal herbs to make a moisture lotion for dry skin, and to make a salve to relieve sore muscles. As we work, we will learn how to read and interpret body care product labels, to determine their safety, potency, and relevance to your individual needs. We will discuss the principles behind the actions of the ingredients we are using in our salve and lotion.

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Hypertufa Trough Workshop

Mon 9 Apr 6:00 pm

Hypertufa troughs make wonderful planters for shallow-rooted outdoor plants such as alpines, thymes and succulents. We will show you how to create your own trough using a cement, perlite and peat moss mixture. You’ll make your trough on the first day and finish it on the second, planting it with a variety of shallow-rooted plants.

Part II is on Monday, April 16 at 6 p.m.

*April 16 please bring: hammer, metal file, and wire brush if you have them. This workshop is limited to 15 participants.

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Black & Pu’erh Tea

Tue 10 Apr 6:30 pm

Black tea is the most commonly consumed tea in the world. We will explore how it is processed and some of the variations that keep them from all tasting the same. We will also touch on dark tea (pu’erh), how it is produced, differs from black tea, and what makes it unique compared to other teas. Tea tastings throughout the class will demonstrate key discussion points

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Horse Pastures & Controlling Weeds

Wed 11 Apr 6:30 pm

Start the grazing season out right by finding out how to make pastures more productive and control weeds, all with a least-toxic approach. Join educator and horse owner Alayne Blickle to learn the basics of how to become a “grass farmer” including how grasses grow, rotational grazing, small farm equipment, fencing options, spreading compost, creating sacrifice areas, least-toxic weed control, and effective irrigation.

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Chip Carved Gourd Birdhouse Workshop

Sat 14 Apr 9:00 am - 1:00 pm

In this fun class, students will create a unique, one-of-a-kind home for our fine feathered friends. With the help of a compass and a U-shaped palm gouge, students will learn how to make a series of cuts to form a unique S-shaped pattern around the entry hole of a birdhouse. Dyes and a sealer will then be applied which will enhance the carving and bring the new gourd birdhouse to life.

Class is limited to 12 people aged 16 years or older. Feel free to bring snacks

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Bonsai Basics

Wed 25 Apr 6:30 pm

This two-part, four-hour class will provide an introduction to Bonsai the art of growing ornamental, artificially dwarfed trees or shrubs. Wednesday will focus on the art form and history, suitable plant material, soils, hydration, every day and special tools, pots, wiring, and pruning. Saturday will be an adventure in pruning your own juniper, a great plant for starting out.

Workshop limited to 15 participants.

Part II – April 28* • 10 a.m.

*On 4/28 please bring gloves, small pruning shears or scissors, small paintbrush, wood chopsticks if you have them.

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Wildflower Walk

Thu 26 Apr 6:30 pm

Come join a celebration of our foothills wildflowers. Botanists will lead participants on a 1.5- to 2-hour leisurely walk on trails behind the Old Penitentiary. Native and not-so-native species will be identified and discussed during the session.

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Soil Science for Gardeners

Sun 29 Apr 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

One million organisms can exist in a single pinch of soil. As a living, breathing foundation of garden landscapes, it’s important to take care of the world beneath our feet. This class will introduce basic soil structures, texturing skills, local soil types, and how organic matter can impact microbiological relationships that plants depend on.

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Wildflower Walk

Thu 3 May 6:30 pm

Come join a celebration of our foothills wildflowers. Botanists will lead participants on a 1.5- to 2-hour leisurely walk on trails behind the Old Penitentiary. Native and not-so-native species will be identified and discussed during the session.

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Oolong Tea

Tue 8 May 6:30 pm

Oolong tea is its own tea world. Just as there is an oxidation range in other teas, from white to black, there is that same range within the world of oolong tea. In this class we will explore that range and discuss the variations in the process that create it. Tea tastings throughout the class will demonstrate key discussion points.

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Concrete Leaf Workshop

Mon 14 May 6:00 pm

Create a garden ornament using concrete and a large leaf. Cover your leaf with wet mortar mix and return to the Garden a week later to finish your unique garden treasure. All materials will be provided to make your own concrete leaf to use as a small birdbath or garden decoration.

This workshop is limited to 15 participants.

Part II is on Monday, May 21 • 6 p.m.

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Paper Making Workshop

Sat 19 May 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

The class will focus on the making of paper from different plants. All plants have cellulose, even invasive weeds, and so all plants have the potential for becoming paper. Tom will furnish all the supplies and fibers for the class. The class will consist of an orientation to the different artistic items that can be made with paper, the different tools for making paper, and handouts about paper and paper making with different fibers and inclusions. Since paper making is a wet process it is important to wear clothing that can get wet. For those who wish to continue making paper beyond this class, moulds and deckles will be for sale. Fiber may be ordered as well and will be delivered to Boise at a later date.

The workshop will be limited to 12 participants.

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Cultivating Love

Thu 31 May 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Did you, or someone you know, get married in the English Garden? Share the story of how you found love and join us at our exclusive Cultivating Love event on May 31st. The evening will include a champagne toast, DJ music, exciting giveaways…and more surprises!

Fill out the form below to describe your special day in the English Garden by May 15th to be included in this celebration.

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2018 Partners – coming soon!

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