The Woodward House Outdoor Classroom and Tree Nursery is collaboratively managed by Tree New Mexico and the City of Albuquerque’s Open Space Division. Nestled among the Rio Grande bosque (river forest) it provides an ideal environment for hands-on training and education about anything and everything tree related. Initial funding for the site came through a bond election in 2011. The small adobe house has been renovated and is surrounded by mature river cottonwoods, Siberian elms and farmland.

Surrounded by 2500 acres and sitting just north of the State Wildlife Center, the location of this facility is an integral part of the largest Cottonwood-Willow gallery in North America. Traditionally this area would flood each year providing ample moisture for the flora and fauna. But conventional farming along its corridor, extensive engineering projects and flood control measures, and spot fires, along with the impact of other human uses have changed the natural flow of the river impacting life above and below the ground.

Educating the public on trees is the focus of the Woodward House Outdoor Classroom. What do trees need to be healthy and why is their health and well-being of importance to us all. The small on-site tree nursery provides a space for students of all ages to roll up their sleeves and get their hands dirty as they learn to nurture trees and grow to love them.

Teaching Moment


Outdoor Classroom Education

Since 1990, Tree New Mexico (TNM) has brought the wonder of trees to the citizens of NM through its diverse educational programs. More recently available is our Woodward House Outdoor Classroom and Tree Nursery. It is used by teachers and students, clubs and organizations, and local businesses interested in knowing more about trees. The management of this facility is a partnership between the City of Albuquerque’s Open Space Division and Tree New Mexico. Nestled in the Rio Grande bosque, it is available to small groups of all ages. TNM’s staff works with partners and collaborators to craft the perfect learning experience for each group.

Training Opportunities

Throughout the year, Tree New Mexico holds training workshops for specific groups and the general public. Topics Include: tree and site selection, tree planting and care, proper tree pruning, trees and beneficial insects, and identifying and addressing tree problems. We also provide education on the utilization of trees for specific purposes such as live windbreaks, riparian restoration, soil building and carbon sequestration. TNM staff, along with experts from State Forestry, City Forestry, Cooperative Extension Service, and local ISA Certified Arborists lead these training opportunities. As a partner in the CABQ Tree Stewards Training Program, we use portions of the program’s current Training Manual as a basis for instruction.

Volunteer Participation and Learning

Experiential learning opportunities are available at the Woodward House Outdoor Classroom and Tree Nursery. Volunteers are often needed to assist with various facets of the management of this facility. In exchange for donating their time, Woodward House volunteers learn about tree seed germination, tree planting and nursery maintenance, tree education and tree benefits. Teaming with TNM staff, there are even opportunities to learn how to create and facilitate a learning experience for others.

To learn more: Contact Kelly White, Training and Program Development Director at