Nature-Based Therapeutics
Classes, Programs & Events


It's nature's way of healing. Nature Based Therapeutics are professionally facilitated interactions with plants, animals and natural landscapes to bring about measurable outcomes in human health and well-being. It is nature's way of healing all people in physical, social, emotional and cognitive ways.


Nature Heals: An Introduction to Nature-Based Therapeutics (University of Minnesota Course)
CSPH 5642     3 Credits | Fall 2017     Online Course

Instructor: Jean Larson

This graduate-level course will cover the basic theories and approaches of NatureBased Therapeutics including restorative environments, therapeutic horticulture, animal assisted interactions, therapeutic landscapes, forest bathing, green care farming, facilitated green exercise, wilderness therapy and ecopsychology. The course includes:
1) historic and theoretical perspectives
2) research into specific techniques
3) application of techniques to specific population and setting

view course flier

     click here
Non Students
     contact Erin Fider at (612) 624-5166, Director of Student Services at Earl K Bakken Center for Spirituality & Healing


Animal-Assisted Interventions (AAI) is the intentional inclusion of animals in a therapeutic process for humans, and often occurs in settings such as hospitals, multi-level care communities, mental health facilities and schools. 

The Animal Assisted Interventions Practitioner Training is the latest initiative with the University of Minnesota's Nature-based Therapeutic Services, a shared collaboration between the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum and the Center for Spirituality and Healing. 

Improve Animal-Assisted Interventions Handling Skills Through a Deeper Understanding of Your Client Population

Wednesday, March 7, 2018; 6 p.m. - 9 p.m. (850-03-07-18)
Tashjian Bee and Pollinator Discovery Center, Minnesota Landscape Arboretum
Wednesday, April 11, 2018; 6 p.m. - 9 p.m. (850-04-11-18)
Nutrena Conference Center (located within Leatherdale Equine Center), University of Minnesota St. Paul Campus

Dr. Jean Larson, Manager/Assistant Professor/Lead Faculty: Nature-Based Therapeutic services, Minnesota Landscape Arboretum and UofM Center for Spirituality and Healing; Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist, Registered Horticultural Therapist, certificate in Disability Services and Administration

Join us as we? learn to? enhance our Animal-Assisted Interventions visits? for? individuals with different abilities. A combination of lecture, dynamic exercise and live demonstration will help you learn skills towards a deeper understanding of non-verbal human body language, heighten your sensitivity to your clients' needs, and enhance your handling skills to better support your clients during visits. Y?ou will learn strategies for managing ?positive interactions and building st?r?ong therapeutic alliances? with a variety of user groups?? such as people with vision, mobility, cognitive and psychiatric disabilities. This training is intended for currently-registered Animal-Assisted Interventions handlers, or handlers actively working toward registration with a nationally recognized therapy animal registry. Questions about this requirement? Please contact Sarah Palm: Note: this class is for the "human end" of the leash only, please leave your animal partners at home.
Limit 40

Certificates of completion will be awarded after each class.

*Non-registered handlers may be able to attend (without an animal) by request to Sarah Palm at

register REGISTER Wednesday, March 7, 6 p.m. - 9 p.m.
Bee Center, Minnesota Landscape Arboretum
$75, includes Arboretum admission
register REGISTER Wednesday, April 11, 6 p.m. - 9 p.m.
Nutrena Conference Center (located within Leatherdale Equine Center), University of Minnesota St. Paul Campus
$75, parking is complimentary directly outside Leatherdale Center see map

Stay tuned!
New 2018 classes will be listed below starting mid-December




















View past Nature-Based Therapeutics Events


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Browse eVersion
Adult Classes Catalog Fall-Winter 2017-2018

Request a hard copy in the mail
Email your request to

           PlantMaker Studio
          Q&A at the Yard & Garden Desk

Youth+Adult Programs
          Ages 3-5 with adult
          Ages 7-12 with adult
Summer Youth Programs
          Registration Opens Jan 2018!        

Gardening & Horticulture Classes
          Gardening - General
          Edible Garden Year
          Landscaping & Design
          Science of Plant Propagation
          Pollinator-Friendly Planting         
          Pruning Essentials
          Floral Design
          Pollinator-Friendly Planting
Fine Art & Crafts Classes
          Sculpting & Sculpture
          Jewelry & Wearable Art
          Mixed Media
          Fiber Arts & Embroidery
          Floral Design
          Open Art Studio
Photography Classes
          Digital Editing & Organization
Food & Wine Classes
          Dine with a Chef
          Saturday Cooking in the Kitchen
          Wine: Making, Tasting & Appreciation
Healthy Living through Nature
          Healthy Living
Nature Appreciation
          Naturalist-Guided Walks
Nature-Based Therapeutics
          NBT Classes, Programs, Events
Book Club
          Book Club


To Register for Class
To register online, click on the "Register" button listed with the class. Or call 612-301-1210 to register by phone. 

Member Perk!
Arboretum Members may invite non-members to attend a class with them at the discounted member rate! Simply register for all participants at the same time in the same order and select the "member" rate for each person at checkout.

Call 612-301-1210
or email:

Cancellation Policy
Registration cancellations must be made two weeks prior to class date in order to receive refund. A $5 processing fee will apply.

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Education Staff Bios
Click here to see brief profiles of Arboretum Education staff members.