Henry Vilas Zoo is kicking off the 2023 gardening season early by starting annuals from seeds during the winter – and we need your help!
Why are you doing this?
Although our grounds are 28 acres, we have limited indoor space to grow enough seeds.
Why should I do this?
This is an excellent way for any gardeners from beginner to advanced to get involved in the zoo! You can literally grow a part of the zoo and share your work with thousands of others. All seeds are listed below along with their intended planting space.
In addition to beautiful flowers, some of the plants will be used as food/treats for our animals throughout the seasons – from tortoises to bison to lemurs!
Who can do this?
You should be comfortable with basic gardening. This project is for those 18+; however, we definitely encourage younger volunteers of any age to get involved with the help of an adult supervisor.
What supplies will I need to provide?
Volunteers will be responsible for providing all seeds, soil, trays and any other supplies as listed.
What is the growing timeline?
Each type of seed has a different timeline, but most start in the end February and should be ready to go by mid to late April. * (*The transplant dates listed in the chart below are an approximation.)
What kind of support will I have?
All seed starters will be in contact with our zoo horticulturalist, Valerie, throughout the project. She can help with any questions or challenges along the way. You will also be talking with her to schedule a drop-off time closer to the end of growing time.
How do I sign up?
Fill out an application below the seed list! We’ll send you a confirmation and be in touch with you throughout the project.
One more thing, what if I kill a plant?
First, don’t panic. Gardening is always a learning opportunity. Second, we are requesting slightly higher amounts than we need with the knowledge that some plants just might not make it.
|Chicory (You choose the type!)||x1 32-cell tray||April 3rd||After May 8th||Raised beds & Children’s Zoo Pollinator Garden|
Seed Starter Stars
For 2023 Seed Starting volunteer project