I came to work as the curatorial intern at Betty Ford Alpine Gardens to learn about managing plant records for living collections and to assist with
plant display labels, a summer job that was a perfect compliment to my Master’s study in public horticulture. Little did I realize I was in for so much more than just curatorial duties: working with volunteers, assisting with events and, most notably, helping to implement an amazing new education center and surrounding gardens. I lived with the fellow interns, which naturally led to many outdoor adventures together suchas rock climbing, hiking, camping, bicycle rides (most memorably up to Vail Pass!), dancing at local music shows—each experience guaranteed to be accompanied by my most favorite past time of botanizing. The Rockies are an amazing place for a plant lover, be it the alpine wildflower display at incredible altitudes of 13,000 feet, the alpine crevice garden at work, or the color change of the quaking aspens as the summer comes to an end. Since returning to California to finish my Master’s degree this fall, I was immediately offered a part-time job at my local arboretum, offering no doubt that my experience has contributed positively to my personal growth. I am
ever grateful for Nick and the staff at the alpine gardens for giving me such well-rounded, practical experience at a truly unique botanic garden. Now if
only I could grow those adorable cushion plants back down at 50 feet above see level; but of course, some things are best left at 8,200 feet.