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We pay attention to the plant life that colors the trail sides and provides the textured backdrop for our photos. We seek out spring blooms and marvel at nature’s varied flower art.
But when was the last time you stopped to appreciate the seeds that create and propagate these beauties for... more >>
For me, it can be honestly confusing, since in my head brews a romantic comedy of plant love with me cast as the prototypical heroine and the native plants as my hero. I easily envision myself running with bags full of seeds, tossing them in the air, rolling in fields... more >>
To provide native plants for restoration, the nurseries have to follow a unique cycle that is dictated by the natural cycles in the Golden Gate National Parks. July marks a busy time of year for the nurseries. Not only are restoration managers submitting requests for next year's restoration project plants,... more >>
If you’re like me, you have a variety of teas at home that promise you sleepy dreams, good digestion, immune boosters, and more. The sheer number of teas can sometimes be overwhelming—and quite costly. Rather than going to your local grocery store, have you ever considered going out to your... more >>
With spring freshly arrived, you’re probably busy planning your garden for the season. Well, in a sense, the park nurseries are doing the same thing—only we’re not planning for gardens, we’re planning for dozens of park restoration and stewardship sites. With help from our dedicated volunteers, the staff of the... more >>
“Leaves of three, let it be. If it’s hairy, it’s a berry. If it’s shiny, watch your hiney.” That famous rhyme can help you pick out poison oak—for part of the year. But, because Toxicodendron diversilobum is deciduous, what about the other seasons?
To identify poison oak all year-round, just remember... more >>
View images of each species at the bottom of this page.
If you’re like me, you choose to live in the beautiful Bay Area to avoid those long terrible winters that would require us to look at seed catalogs just to see some green. While the East is still buried under... more >>
If your loved one takes you out to a nice restaurant this Valentine’s Day and you still have room for dessert, most likely you will see chocolate-covered strawberries on the menu. As you bite into one of nature’s most delectable fruits, you may take some time to ponder the plant... more >>
At your next holiday feast, impress friends and family with some fresh knowledge. Read on to learn the origins of popular holiday foods and discover their closest relatives, found in our parks. Please don’t forage for these items (quite a few are inedible)—but fill your plate with some food for... more >>
Did Christmas come early this year? Well, if you are out hiking in our parks this month it may seem like it.
Heteromeles arbutifolia—otherwise known as Christmas berry or toyon—is in full glory right now. With its brilliant display of bright red berries and leathery serrated leafs, it can often get... more >>