Sacramento’s First Native Plant Garden Tour   Leave a comment

This weekend was the first (that I know of anyway) native plant garden tour for Sacramento, put on by the Sacramento Valley chapter of the California Native Plant Society. Hopefully there will be another one next year, and it will become a regular thing. The lack of native plant/xeriscape garden tours in the Sacramento area has been one of the things that has really bummed me out since moving here. Having grown up going on native plant or xeriscape garden tours, and eco-home tours, with my mom I can say that they are a vital part of the movement. These garden tours are showcases, inspiration, education, and community all in one. The tour this weekend was free, but they can also be a form of fundraiser.

Many of the pictures in my head that I draw from when planning my landscaping come from all those tours my mom and I enjoyed in my teenage and early twenty-something years. Seeing something in place is much more memorable than looking at a picture. Unfortunately, all of those pictures were from New Mexico, so while the structures are still applicable, the plants less so to the grasslands of California’s Central Valley. Since I’ve been really struggling to figure out plants and an overall look for the third of the front lawn that will be converted to native plants, I was hoping that this tour would help provide not just inspiration but plant list help.

The tour itself was ok, but not fabulous. Several gardens on the tour were in the early stages, and the plants had not been in the ground for more than a year. Several gardens were also really small, as in only a few plants. Thankfully there were also a handful of established gardens, or it would have been really depressing to think that native plant gardening is so far behind in Sacramento. It does inspire me very much to get my yard converted, because apparently the real-world education about how beautiful xeriscape and native plants can be is desperately needed here.

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Posted May 1, 2011 by mayakey in environment, gardening

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