Interested in learning special salvage and propagation techniques on specialty, tricky plants such as Tall and Low Oregon-grape?

Join one of our premier plant whisperers, Andy, for a seasonally specialized Teaching NPSalvage event focused on Mahonia aquifolium and M. nervosa, Tall and Low Oregon-grape. 

This events will be offered as an extension of our NPSalvage event on Saturday, March 30th* and is for those looking to learn more in depth plant I.D. characteristics, salvage & propagation techniques, and the ability to take beautiful plant starts home.

*Date may be subject to change.

Register by selecting the 3.30 Teaching NPSalvage option on the right.

Participants will receive:

  • 2.5 hours of seasonally specialized workshop in the field

  • Homemade lunch

  • 2.5 hours of nursery time to practice your learned skills

  • Plants to take home

Last NPSalvage event of the season: Saturday 3/30 9:30 - 3:30

What is a salvage?

Our volunteers, in partnership with Thurston County Stream Team, salvage small native trees, shrubs and herbaceous plants from local areas scheduled for clearing. Salvages are a great way to practice plant identification and to meet fellow plant nerds.

The plants are cared for at NPSF nurseries and eventually used by NPSP, Thurston Co. Steam Team and other community groups to restore habitat and improve water quality in and around Thurston County. Volunteers are also welcome to salvage plants for their home landscaping projects.

To keep up with restoration projects you can sign-up for our Mailchimp updates or view the Thurston Co. Stream Team calendar.

When and where do they happen?

Salvages usually happen in the cold winter months, when the plants are dormant and less likely to perish from the stress of being moved around.

Morning location varies by salvage site and will be emailed to volunteers in advance of the event!

Salvages take place in two parts; first at the salvage site and second at our plant nursery. Volunteers are invited to help for however long they feel capable; whether that's all day, or for just one part! We appreciate your contribution, however long you can stay.

Pay it Forward system

“Pay it Forward” to support others learning!

By purchasing a “Pay it Forward” (PiF) registration you reserve an additional slot to be offered as a scholarship and allow more individuals to study our natural world, regardless of their monthly allowance.

Regular session: $20.00 Pay it Forward session: $30.00


Register to volunteer for NPSalvage below:

Name *
NPSalvage Dates *
This is a two part event: salvage in the morning, then sorting and divisions at the NPSF Nursery in the afternoon. Come for as long or little as you would like!

Part 1:  We meet in the morning at the salvage site (directions provided upon registration). Volunteers are trained on-site how to properly identify and dig up desired native plants. We usually finish salvaging on site around noon, and provide a hot vegetarian lunch for our hungry volunteers.  Once plants have been salvaged, we transport them to our holding-beds facility, which is our plant nursery, to pot the recovered plants.  We are grateful to the Washington State Department of Transportation for sharing this space with us.

Part 2: In the afternoon volunteers join us at the NPSF’s nursery to learn how to properly pot the salvaged plants, and then help to organize them for later distribution. This is a great way to learn and practice native plant ID. During this time, volunteers continue to help themselves to hot soup and other snacks as necessary to keep themselves fueled for the work at hand!