Growing Natives Garden Tour 2014

El Jardin Feliz (16 photos)

Garden #38, San Jose


Photography by R.Schoenenberger, ©2012,

Showcase Features: This small urban yard was reclaimed from a sterile concrete wasteland to a welcoming, sustainable native and edible garden. After the concrete was removed more work was needed because garbage had been buried under the concrete. Once the soil was exposed, a large area of the back yard was converted to a no-mow lawn that is only watered once a week. The lawn, planted with red fescue, yarrow and grass-tolerant wildflowers, is partly shaded by a large black walnut, which reverted from a grafted English walnut. Some of the concrete was reused to create raised vegetable beds and a fire pit, making the backyard a family gathering spot.

Other Garden Attractions: The very small, shady front yard and parking strip are a pocket size front garden that highlights native dry shade plants. The focal point is a beautiful lichen-covered rock planted with dudleya, California's native succulents. The slightly sloping front yard is planted with coffee berry, salvia, ribes, monkey flower and seaside daisy. The parking strip is mounded slightly for drainage, making it a great home for a large Galvesia speciosa.

Gardening for Wildlife: Bees, butterflies, moths, birds and feral cats

Years of CA Native Gardening at this Location: 4

Garden Size: 6,300 sq ft

Designer: California Nativescapes - Rebecca Schoenenberger
Installer: California Nativescapes - Rebecca Schoenenberger

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