Growing Natives Garden Tour 2017

Santa Teresa Wild (6 photos)

Garden #89, San Jose


Showcase Features: Five years ago, this garden was transformed from traditional landscape to nearly 100% California natives. The front yard showcases a number of shrubs (coyote bushes, ceanothus, manzanitas, St. Catherine's lace), lower-growing perennials (penstemon, California fuchsia, buckwheat, monkey flower) and several impressive clumps of deer grass. A flagstone path through the middle of the front yard, bordered with serpentine stones, provides easy access to view the mature, well grown specimens of dozens of CA natives. The backyard has been converted more recently; many cubic yards of clay were removed to create terraces where more native plants are finding their home.

Other Garden Attractions: The property borders the Santa Teresa County Park, which was heavily ranched and is full of invasive weeds and grasses. The owners are aiming to achieve the look of what this area was like before the modern times, and what it can be like if you give the natives a fighting chance. Many species seen in the garden can be also found in the park.

Gardening for Wildlife: The native plants and proximity to the park attract many wildlife species and provide an opportunity to see them without leaving the garden; deer, coyotes, squirrels, voles, raccoon, skunks; red-tail hawk, falcons, turkeys, quail, hooded orioles, hummingbirds; many species of native bees, butterflies, praying mantis; fence and alligator lizard, occasional rattlesnake, salamanders, newts, toads and frogs.

Years of CA Native Gardening at this Location: 5

Garden Size: 1200 sq.ft front, about 2000 sq.ft in the back

Designer: Middlebrook Gardens and Homeowner
Installer: Middlebrook Gardens and Homeowner

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