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South Seattle College Conifer Tour with Van Bobbitt

July 22, 2023 @ 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm PDT


The South Seattle College Arboretum was designated an American Conifer Society (ACS) Reference Garden in 2014. This designation recognizes “noteworthy conifer collections.” This is one of only two ACS Reference Gardens in Washington State.

The crown jewel of the Arboretum’s conifer collection is the Coenosium Rock Garden, described on the ACS’s website as  “arguably the best public collection of dwarf conifers in the region” (https://conifersociety.org/conifers/reference-gardens/south-seattle-college/). It exists largely due to Dianne and Bob Fincham, who generously donated all the conifers in the Coenosium Rock Garden from their nursery. The Finchams wanted to develop a garden that would help both students and the gardening public appreciate of the value of dwarf conifers. They worked with the students, instructors, and volunteers of the college’s horticulture program to make it happen.

You will learn the history of the SSC Arboretum, see its extensive conifer collection, and pick up tips on pruning conifers while touring this 5-acre public garden with Van Bobbitt. Van was a horticulture instructor and arboretum coordinator at South Seattle College from 1999 to 2015. In retirement, Van spends his time volunteering for the Washington Native Plant Society, Birds Connect Seattle (previously known as Seattle Audubon), Kruckeberg Botanic Garden, and Santa Barbara Botanic Garden, in addition to leading tours like this for PlantAmnesty.

Following the conifer tour, we encourage you to join us at the nearby Northwest Wine Academy (https://nwwineacademy.southseattle.edu/), a program of South Seattle College, for a Happy Hour. In their tasting room, you will be able to purchase wine (individual glasses or a tasting) and enjoy appetizers specially prepared for our group. The appetizers are provided through your conifer tour ticket purchase.

We look forward to seeing you for this social and educational event in a spectacular location!


July 22, 2023
3:00 pm - 4:30 pm PDT
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South Seattle College Arboretum
6000 16th Ave SW
Seattle, 98106
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