Volunteering with the U of S

We are a group of university students implementing a sustainable outdoor green feature at the Gordon Oakes Red Bear Center showcasing traditional native plants. We need a gardener experienced in planting native seeds and shrubs for the beginning of June. This is a one day position, which involves incorporating compost into the soil, and seeding and planting using proper techniques and spacing into a large circular outdoor planter. Compost, seeds, and shrubs will be located on site, and you will be provided with a draft image of where each plant should be located. You will need to bring your own gardening tools.
Position: one day planting of native forbs, grasses, and shrubs into the Gordon Oakes Red Bear Center outdoor planter.
Required skills: must be able to correctly incorporate compost into the soil, and plant native seeds and shrubs using proper techniques and spacing.
Contact : Katie Harris at keh731@usask.ca
We are looking for artistic nature lovers to draw (either on a computer or on paper) some specific illustrations for us. We're open to different styles and would be happy to add your name to the illustration wherever it is used. We would be using the images on our website, in our classes, on social media, or possibly in printed materials such as the free pamphlets we distribute for free. If you want to donate your artistic skills towards furthering public education, let us know at gardening@usask.ca
Gardening at USask has a very active, free to access, public education service including a Facebook page with almost daily tips and updates during the growing season, a website with more than 200 pesticide-free gardening articles, personalized help, a new video series, and several free classes and events throughout the year. We're always looking for help to get the word out about what we do here. Some of our funding is based on how many people are engaged with our free activities but by and large, our classes fund for our free outreach education and every registration matters. By helping us spread the word about classes, you help us keep the free stuff coming. How can you help? You can digitally distribute our classes to gardening friends, hang posters about our activities anywhere you think someone might want to see them, stick a copy in your work coffee room, or you can volunteer to deliver flyers. If you want to help spread the word, we have digital copies of our spring classes available below for you to print (Hort Week is coming soon!) and we have some printed copies available as well. Contact gardening@usask.ca if you need print copies or want to help with delivery.

We are collecting donations of used gardening or outdoor related books or magazines as well as general games and puzzles for the New Plants and Used Books sale.  Books can be dropped off any time before the start of Hort Week.

Books can be dropped off at 1D31 in the Ag Building (under the stairs in the Atrium). At least one of us is usually here between 9-4 pm Monday through Thursday and sporadically on Fridays, though you may want to call ahead to 306-966-5097 or 306-966-5865 to make sure. In addition to these days, you are also welcome to donate your items during our set up day on May 2 from 1-4 pm though we will accept donations at any time throughout the sale.

When you are dropping off books, there is a loading dock behind the building. Park on either side of the ramp, enter in the person-sized door to the left beside the garage doors and you come to a general maintenance room. In that room or in the hallway directly behind it to your right, you will find carts to help with your unloading. Loading dock doors are unlocked during business hours. Once your cart is loaded, enter back into the same door. You will see a hallway to your left and another straight ahead to your right. Both will lead you to the same location, the main atrium. Our offices are side by side under the stairs in the main Atrium.

We have a robust website that has been undergoing nearly constant updates in both content and technical support since it was launched two years ago. We've made every effort to make sure that everything we produce is top quality, though occasionally it isn't perfect. We're in the process of launching website 2.0 and we'd like your help to read through our site and make editing suggestions - Is something not explained clearly enough? Do we have a typo that needs to be fixed? Would a different picture make this easier to understand? As updates are occurring regularly, please contact us if you want to help with this so we can make sure you're not reviewing material we're about to replace. Contact gardening@usask.ca to volunteer!

Hort Week is coming May 4-12. Gardening at USask is celebrating its 30th year of offering free and low-cost gardening education activities to the public, and the PHC (Prairie Hort Certificate Program) is celebrating its 25th year. With more than 60 events planned, we're looking for help to make this week possible. Anyone is welcome to volunteer and all volunteer hours count towards your Master Gardener certification. What kind of jobs do we have? We're planning a New Plants and Used Book sale so we need help with set up and management of the sale. We need help at the front desk, and we sometimes need an extra hand in the classroom too.

We will provide a shared volunteer parking pass for people volunteering for shifts that are 3 hours or more long. You will need to pick up this pass before your shift, park, walk from the parking area to your volunteer session in the Ag Building, which is about a 5-minute walk. You will need to return the parking pass immediately after your shift so that the next volunteer can use it. You will need to let us know in advance if you need to use our pass so we can make suitable arrangements.

We're using SignUp to manage volunteers. Here's how it works in 3 easy steps:

1) Click this link to see our SignUp
2) Review the options listed and choose the spot(s) you like.
3) Sign up! It's Easy - you will NOT need to register an account or keep a password on SignUp.com.

Note: SignUp.com does not share your email address with anyone. If you prefer not to use your email address, please contact me at gardening@usask.ca and I can sign you up manually.

Jackie Bantle and Eldon Siemens (Ag Greenhouse staff) are looking for Master Gardener volunteers to give tours to students (Grade 1 - 12) at the Agriculture Greenhouse.  Every year the Ag Greenhouse gets numerous requests from teachers to provide a tour and short propagation exercise to students (length of tour can be anywhere from 1 - 2 hours).  A group of up to 25 students are guided through the greenhouse by a guide and told about the various breeding programs and research going on in the Dept of Plant Sciences.  Other information may include how the food we farm and eat today developed from plants found in nature (ie. native grass species being developed into the wheat, barley and other grains we eat today), edible plants that are not common in North America, different and unusual plants from around the world and how plants grow in a greenhouse and how insects are controlled among these plants.  We will train and work with the master gardener volunteers until they are comfortable doing the tours on their own.  The reason we are looking for assistance from the U of S Master Gardeners is that we find that our schedules are getting too busy to accommodate all the requests that we are receiving from teachers.  

If you think you might be interested in this volunteer opportunity, please contact Jackie Bantle directly at jackie.bantle@usask.ca.

Not a specific task per se - the volunteer short list is a private list we maintain in the gardening.usask.ca office for upcoming Saskatoon and area events with a quick turnaround. Sometimes we are looking for someone to help plant at the greenhouse, or maybe we need a quick hand in a classroom, or maybe we need other assistance. This is our go-to list to find local help. You don't ever have to say yes, you can ignore the emails if you want, but we'd sure like to have a helping hand from time to time. Email gardening@usask.ca to get on the special list!

Help us organize our photo database! We need someone to tag our images with basic tags such as students, trees, mulch, etc. The work must be done on our computer at our campus office in the AgBio building. Contact v.young@usask.ca to assist!
We are starting a fun recognition program to salute people who are demonstrating good garden practice in their communities. What kind of good practice? Maybe their yard is exceptionally beautiful, or it's got significant native plants, or they got a lot of community involvement. Maybe they are really good at mulching or serving the birds. Maybe they are entirely pesticide free! We are seeking assistance in identifying spaces worthy of recognition, awarding recognition certificates, and taking a camera phone image of the recipient or their space for social media. To volunteer, please contact v.young@usask.ca
We are seeking images of local insects, plants, flower beds, flower pots, and gardens for our website and print materials. Interested photographers would take images with their camera (or high-quality phone camera) and deliver them to us electronically through our dropbox. All images would require information on location and content, preferably including names of plants included. Images of recognizable homes require signed approval of homeowner to display image without the address. Images including people are especially needed and require a photo release signed. Releases are available. To volunteer, please contact v.young@usask.ca
Jackie Bantle, Department of Plant Sciences, University of Saskatchewan is looking for Master Gardeners to volunteer in the Plant Sciences Greenhouses. If you are interested in helping out, please email Jackie to be put on her volunteer list.

Community Volunteer Opportunities

Agriculture in the Classroom (AITC) supports a number of school gardens- both inside the classroom and outdoors. Teachers often request growing tips, or appreciate a guest visit connected to the gardens. We are seeking volunteers to mentor the teachers (and students) on growing techniques and to get involved in the local school gardening communities. Opportunities are available in Saskatoon and across the province. For more information, visit http://aitc.sk.ca/get-involved/volunteers. See you in the garden!
Agriculture in the Classroom's Food Farms program helps students learn about where their food comes from through actively participating in growing the ingredients for familiar foods such as pizza, burgers, and fries. Grade 3 students plant seeds in the spring and then the same students return in the fall to harvest their crops! Food Farms take place in Yorkton, Moose Jaw, Saskatoon, Swift Current, Melfort, Prince Albert and Outlook. Volunteers are required to assist students in planting vegetable crops in spring, and harvesting in fall. For more information, see http://aitc.sk.ca/get-involved/volunteers

Saturday, May 25 

9:00am-5:00pm

1202 19th Street W

The Rotary Community Garden is a newly developing community garden located at the junction of 19th Street West and Ave L South. We are currently seeking volunteers to help us create a garden that will serve the members of our community. 

Because the garden is located on a contaminated brownfield site, food cannot be grown directly in the soil. For this reason, we will be building a number of raised beds. Some will be Grow Together boxes (to be shared and enjoyed by anyone in the community) and some will be Grow Your Own boxes for those wishing to have their own garden plot. 

We are looking for eager and enthusiastic people to help us build our garden boxes. No skills are necessary; everyone welcome! We will have people on site to help you build the boxes. We will also have material to haul such as soil, compost, and mulch and you will plant some of the first seeds that will grow into beautiful vegetables for residents who live in King George, Pleasant Hill, West Industrial, and Riversdale.

Schedule: 

  • 9:00 am Introductions & Housekeeping

  • 9:45-11:45 am Workshop: How to Build a Raised Bed

  • 11:45am-12:45 pm Lunch Break (please bring your own)

  • 12:45-5:00 pm Work Bee: Complete Construction of Raised Beds for Rotary Community Garden

Please Bring:

  • Lunch and Snacks

  • Water

  • Sun Screen, Bug Spray

  • Close Toed Shoes

  • Hat

  • Work Gloves

Looking for additional ways to help out?
We are in need of the following equipment and materials for our Work Bee:

  • Cordless drills (charged and/or with extra batteries)

  • Utility/Exacto knives

  • Staple guns

  • Wheel barrows
  • Shovels

  • Rakes

  • Safety goggles

  • Work gloves

  • Garbage bin and bags

  • Seeds and plants (edible and native plants)

  • Snacks to share

  • Someone to take photos of the event!

Pre-Bee:
We will be spreading mulch and moving palettes into place on Wednesday, May 15 at 5:30 pm. If you're interested in helping out, please let us know.

For more information or to volunteer, please contact the Rotary Garden Collective at rotarygardencollective@gmail.com or visit our facebook group: www.facebook.com/groups/559126037897852.  

As a volunteer for Canadian National Institute for the Blind (CNIB) you would play a significant role in creating a warm and inviting front of our building for our clients, and community to enjoy.  We are situated on the corner of McKercher and Heritage Crescent, this is a prime location for your beautiful work to be showcased.  Under the direction of the Program Lead, you are responsible for caring for the CNIB planters and xeroscaping.  We value our volunteers and their expertise; and are grateful that you would be a part of the CNIB Team!

Responsibilities:

  • Be willing to complete garden and yard tasks as directed by the Program Lead. Tasks would include:
    • Planting
    • Weeding
    • Pruning
    • Fertilizing
    • Watering
    • Deadheading
    • Etc.
    • Able to communicate your schedule to the Program Lead
    • Work independently
    • Clean up after yourself
    • Willing to get your hands dirty!

Necessary Skills

  • A good working knowledge of gardening practices
  • Physically capable – some of the work can be physically demanding.
  • A friendly and enthusiastic demeanour!

Estimated Time Commitment:

  • 1-2 hours per week – may be slightly more the first week or two

 

If interested please contact:

Ashley Hay

Program Lead, Community Engagement

(306)667-2240

ashley.hay@cnib.ca

The Garden Patch has many volunteer opportunities for Master Gardeners including routine garden maintenance and helping during community events. Volunteers who are able to commit to regular shifts can choose to ‘adopt’ a portion of the garden. This includes caring for a raised bed or part of a healthy yards demonstration garden (Green roof, pollinator garden, polyculture, native prairie, healthy backyard, children’s garden, season extension). All volunteers are required to do a short orientation before their shift.

The Garden Patch is an Urban Agriculture initiative of the Saskatoon Food Bank & Learning Centre. In the last seven years, the Garden Patch has grown 127,000 lbs of produce for distribution in emergency food baskets. We are located in the 900 block of 3rd Avenue and are open Monday to Saturday from May to October.

Contact: adrian.w@saskatoonfoodbank.org to sign up!

The Askîy Project is an urban agricultural internship initiated in 2014 by CHEP Good Food Inc. Through the planning and operation of a small-scale urban farm on 20th Street West, the askîy project is dedicated to educating Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal youth from Saskatoon’s core neighbourhoods in gaining work experience and life skills. By working through a set curriculum, interns are mentored to select and grow a variety of food crops, create marketing plans, organize community events, host tours and volunteer opportunities for community groups, and sell their produce to the public at the local farmer’s market, through on-site sales, and to local restaurants.
 
CHEP Good Food welcomes volunteers from the Master Gardener program to assist with ongoing site development, plant care, composting, and harvesting/processing activities. Volunteer opportunities with the askîy project are available between May and October. To learn more, please contact CHEP’s Volunteer Coordinator by calling 306-655-4575 or sending an email to volunteers@chep.org

Do you have a green thumb?  Enjoy planning garden spaces?  Do you have skills or knowledge in landscape architecture and green space design?  
Parkridge Centre is in the planning and development stages for a barrier-free community garden space.  The space is going to be one of a kind in Saskatoon and will offer the opportunity for residents of Parkridge Centre and members of the Parkridge Community to garden in a completely barrier-free environment.

We are currently accepting volunteer applications for the following:

  • PRC Horticulture Volunteer:  Our Horticulture volunteer works directly with our Occupational therapy department in order to assist with the PRC horticulture program.  The program volunteer will provide support to our residents in completing work in our greenhouse throughout the year.
  • Landscape Design Volunteer – Do you have the skills and knowledge to plan a green space or garden space?  The Landscape Design Volunteer will assist in the overall design of the barrier-free garden space and will work closely with a team of volunteers, staff and community members to ensure that the design of the space is reflective of the needs of the community.
  • Plantation Volunteer – do you have knowledge about planting a variety of vegetables, fruit trees, flowers and native to Saskatchewan varieties of plants and trees?  Our Plantation Volunteer is responsible for the overall plantation planning including the selection of the plant varieties; they will work closely with the manager of Volunteer Workforce and a team of Garden volunteers to ensure that the proper variety selection occurs and that planting occurs at the correct times.
  • Community Garden Volunteer –  Our Garden Volunteers will assist with the overall planning, planting, maintenance and harvest within our garden space.

We are seeking the assistance of community members who have a willingness to assist with the overall design and development of a barrier-free community garden, if you have specific skills or knowledge you would like to share please feel free to contact Kimberly Quam, Manager of Volunteer Workforce for Parkridge Centre directly at 306-655-3865 or via email at  Kimberly.quam@saskatoonhealthregion.ca

The Saskatoon Horticultural Society (SHS) has been operating since 1913 within the Saskatoon region and consists of volunteers to run its board and the many events held throughout the year. The SHS promotes the enjoyment of art, knowledge and public awareness of horticulture and safe environmental practices to its members. Are you passionate about horticulture and want to network with like-minded people in the Saskatoon region? We have various planning committees that you can join. Each committee consists of 3-4 people and includes:
  • Seedy Saturday Committee
  • Gardenscape Committee
  • Spring Garden Sale Committee
  • Passport Tour Committee
  • Fall Garage Sale Committee

If you do not want to join the planning of these events, you can simply volunteer at the event.

Do you want to get more involved with SHS? We are always looking for new people to become directors of our society to help achieve our mission. We meet once a month to discuss the direction of SHS. If you want to attend a meeting to see what we are about, please contact Chris at (306) 281-8921 or Nancy at (306)-227-6537. Please send us an email with your contact information at saskatoonhortsociety@sasktel.net

As a member of the Garden/Yard Team, you play a significant role in creating a warm and welcoming environment for our families. Under the direction of the Volunteer Garden/Yard Leader, you are responsible for caring for the Ronald McDonald House yard. We value teamwork and collaboration and we are grateful that you are a part of the Ronald McDonald House Saskatchewan Team!

Responsibilities

  • Be willing to complete garden and yard tasks as directed by the Volunteer Garden/Yard Leader. Tasks would include:
    • Planting
    • Weeding
    • Pruning
    • Fertilizing
    • Watering
    • Deadheading
    • Wash down patio
    • Sweep desks and steps
    • Etc.
    • Communicate your availability to the leader and commit to a regular weekly schedule as well as occasional work bees.
    • Clean up after each work session.
    • Be willing to attend group meetings at the beginning, middle and end of the gardening season.
    • Willing to get your hands dirty!

Necessary Skills

  • A good working knowledge of gardening practices, or the willingness to learn.
  • Physically capable – some of the work can be physically demanding.
  • A friendly and enthusiastic demeanour!

Estimated Time Commitment:

  • 1-2 hours per week plus, plus occasional work bees and meetings. This may differ on a specific area of expertise you may bring to the team.

*Please note that you may want to bring your own equipment (ie: knee pads, favourite tools, etc).

North Park Wilson School is working to maintain our Natural Grassland Garden. It is a designated space at the front of our building at 1505-9th Ave. N. We are looking for interested gardeners who would like to join us in the planning and development of a plan for the ongoing preservation and maintenance of this space. Please contact the school at 306-683-7380 or email northparkwilsonschool@spsd.sk.ca to get more information.
Oliver Lodge on 1405 Faulkner Crescent is currently on the hunt for a regular “Gardening/Horticulture Volunteer” to share their knowledge and expertise.  We are hoping to find an individual who is able to commit 2-3 hours one day per week (day and time are flexible – in the past, it has been Wednesday mornings). Our residents have a greenhouse, flower pots, raised flower beds, and a raised garden that they take care with the help of the Recreation Coordinators, but they need your help. Please contact Kristen Smith, Director of Recreation and Volunteer Services at 306-986-5471 or kristen.smith@saskatoonhealthregion.ca if you are interested or would like more information. Oliver Lodge is located at 1405 Faulkner Crescent.
 

The Four-Season Urban Agriculture Project at the Regina Food Bank includes a community greenhouse that operates year-round and utilizes vertical growing techniques that are both soilless and soil based along with an elevated raised bed that is maintained by a CNC robot called the Farmbot.  The purpose of this project is not only to provide locally grown nutritious food to our clients and community but also to provide educational opportunities to learn about where our food comes from, how to grow food at home, and composting.  We are looking to expand our growing methods and demonstration areas while building on our school and community outreach project where we share equipment and resources for growing food year-round with interested partners. 

We are looking for volunteers with various skills, knowledge, and availability to help with the project. Please if you are interested in volunteering with us or want more information contact Kim Wenger the Community Greenhouse Coordinator at kimw@reginafoodbank.ca or at 1-306-559-3774.

Do you need a volunteer?

Let us know at gardening@usask.ca. We will circulate volunteer opportunities for all non-profit organizations. We will also circulate volunteer opportunities for private individuals if that individual is physically incapable of gardening. While we don't mow lawns, prune large trees or clean gutters, we will try to get you the help you need to do things like refreshing a perennial bed or pruning a small shrub.