Adult Volunteers

Volunteer Opportunities

Marie Selby Botanical Gardens relies on its volunteers to enrich visitors’ experiences, care for our living collection, assist in vital research and conservation projects, and help others understand the Gardens and the natural world. Generally, volunteers are requested to commit to a four-hour shift once weekly, but other possibilities are available. 

Public Positions

If you are sociable and enjoy dealing directly with our many guests, consider one of the following positions:

Mansion Docent: Love art? Enjoy people? Join the team that enriches the experience of our guests who visit the Mansion Museum. You will share your knowledge of art, details about the various exhibitions, and information on the history of the Christy Payne house with visitors to the Mansion/Museum of Botany and the Arts.

Tour and Display House Guides: Tour guides and Display House guides provide a richer experience for our guests by sharing their knowledge about the Gardens, the Selby legacy, and our outstanding horticultural displays.

Welcome Center/Gift Shops: Be the face they remember when they think of Selby Gardens! You will be trained to welcome guests, run the cash register, and assist members and tour groups. Those interested will be cross-trained to help in the Garden Shop as well.

Education Positions

The Gardens’ Center for Environmental Education offers a wonderful opportunity to share your knowledge and enthusiasm about the living world.  Many positions are available including:

Mobile Cart Education Specialist: This is the perfect position for someone who wants to spend time outdoors in the Gardens while helping others learn more about what they see! Our mobile carts may be placed at any location within the Gardens to provide  instant answers to our visitors’ questions

School Group Guide: A wonderful chance to enrich the lives of the next generation! Guide groups through the Gardens and Display House and assist with special programs formulated for groups from schools throughout Southwest Florida.

Research Department Positions

Selby’s Center for Tropical Plant Science & Conservation seeks volunteers who want to make a contribution to the study and classification of plants.  Positions include:

Data Entry: Data entry assistants add important information to the Gardens’ records about its plants, assist with upkeep of online references and our plant care database, and more. You will have a chance to interact and learn from our scientists and others striving to add to the bank of knowledge about plants and their place in our world.

Display Plants Inventory Assistants: Work with our incredible collection of living plants! You will be responsible for helping update our records on display plants’ locations throughout the Gardens—a fabulous way to become intimately familiar with the amazing Selby collection.

Horticulture Volunteers

The Horticulture Department is responsible for the care of our living collection and for keeping our grounds manicured and thriving.  Positions are available in the Greenhouses and on the Grounds.

Special Events Positions

The perfect position if you can’t commit to a weekly schedule. Participate in our most notable annual events, including the Asian Festival, Plant & Garden Festival, Garden Music Concert Series, Tropical Fourth of July, and the spectacular Selby Lights in Bloom! Volunteers are needed to guide visitors, answer questions, assist in the Welcome Center, and more.

How to Get Started

Filling out an application is the first step to joining the Selby Volunteer family. Please download, complete and mail the form to us.  Next, attend one of our volunteer orientations.  To learn more about the positions above or to find out about other possibilities, please contact us at 941-366-5731 x 227 or email us.

Volunteer Brochure and Application