Growing Natives Garden Tour 2013

Meadowlands Garden (24 photos)

Garden #62, San Jose


Showcase Features: Once a lifeless patch of subsoil, stripped bare during the development, then a home to drought-tolerant but non-native plants that had no value to local wildlife, this large, collector's garden is now home to many wonderful species of natives that is well worth the visit. The main feature of the garden is a large collection of California lilacs, with nearly 70 different species and cultivars, about 45 of them having grown to mature sizes. From mid-January until mid-June there is always some Ceanothus in bloom, starting with wart-stemmed ceanothus and ending with lakeside ceanothus. The garden also includes smaller collections of manzanitas, dudleyas, buckwheats, mallows, salvias, and oaks.

Many other uncommon species can be found in this garden, such as bush poppy (Dendromecon rigida), desert willow (Chilopsis linearis), Mexican flannelbush (Fremontodendron mexicanum), saltbush (Atriplex lentiformis), Fernald's iris, and others.

Heavy clay soil provides one of the challenges. The garden was designed, installed and is maintained by the homeowners who are passionate about native plants.

Other Garden Attractions: The garden features mostly plants that are clay-tolerant, but the fairly steep slope in the back makes it possible to grow plants requiring good drainage, such as flannelbushes. The lower portion of the backyard, where standing water has been observed during El Nino years, has became a home to a forest of coyote bushes, some reaching tree sizes. In the lowest portion of the yard, a Fremont poplar planted in 2003 has reached over 30 feet in height.

Gardening for Wildlife: The wide variety of native plans and large brush pile attract numerous wildlife. Visitors include lizards, frogs, toads, snakes and many birds and insects. Jackrabbits have been living under the brush pile for several years.

Garden Talk: 12PM - Planting in mud.

Years of CA Native Gardening at this Location: 15

Garden Size: 1 acre

Designer: Homeowner
Installer: Homeowner

Click here to display the plant list in a printer-friendly format.

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