Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden is a Certified Wildlife Habitat
This won’t come as a surprise if you’ve been to Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden, but in August the National Wildlife Federation recognized us as an official Certified Wildlife Habitat site.
From hawks to butterflies, the Garden attracts a multitude of wildlife. Habitats not only nurture year-round resident birds but also provide stopover sites for migratory birds. Biologist Mark Hostetier of the University of Florida says that “urban environments are an important factor in the future conservation of many species. Not only has urban sprawl grown into the paths of stopover sites on bird flyways, but the sheer volume of human development has changed the amount of area available for nesting and overwintering.”
Diana Jolles, doctoral candidate in botany at RSABG, is a recipient of an award from the Northern California Botanists’ 2011–12 Botany Research Scholarship Program. The $1,000 grant will help to support Jolles’ research on the Pyrola picta species complex (Ericaceae), which is well known in Northern California (among other places that it occurs). To learn more about Northern California Botanists and their support of student research, please see the Northern California Botanists website.
Jinyan Guo, a doctoral candidate in the botany program at RSABG, has been selected to receive The Fletcher Jones Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship for the 2011–12 academic year. Funded by The Fletcher Jones Foundation, the grant is awarded each year to one of the students at RSABG who are in their last year of the doctoral degree program and whose research is exemplary in systematic and evolutionary botany. Guo is studying the diversity and evolution of sepal crests on plants in the Iris genus (Iridaceae). These crests are 3D structures that stick up off of the flat surface of the sepals and likely have a role in pollination biology.
Erin Tripp earns George R. Cooley Award
The American Society of Plant Taxonomists awarded Erin Tripp, an expert on wild petunias, their George R. Cooley Award for Best Contributed Paper in Plant Systematics at the society’s annual meeting. During Tripp’s presentation, entitled “Physacanthus (Acanthaceae): a heteroplasmic, intergeneric, interlineage hybrid?”, she marshaled extensive morphological and genetic evidence to present what one award judge described as “the complete story” of a west African plant genus with previously uncertain evolutionary origins.
The Garden is thriving, thanks in no small part to the role and importance of plant curation.
Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden is a museum of plants—a living collection. The Garden’s curated living collection contains more than 22,000 plants, representing nearly 1,400 species, hybrids and cultivars of native California flora.
To effectively take care of this vast collection, an accession system is vital to the overall wellbeing of the Garden. Plant curation, like art curation, involves the meaningful organization of information about a collection.
A Green Yard
When Steve and Paula Albrigo took on relandscaping, their goal was a green yard.
Not the green often used to describe environmentally friendly landscapes(although the results are certainly eco-minded), but to fill their 7,000-square-foot front yard with a mini-forest of native plants—a spectrum of green.
"I wanted people to look at our yard and say that they never imagined a native California landscape could be so green and beautiful,” says Steve Albrigo.
The result is a striking, beautiful domestic space that showcases native plants. The corner lot has been transformed from manicured turf to a carefully crafted woodsy wildscape that reminds the Albrigos of the serene mountain retreats they love.
By Bart O'Brien
Spectacular and beautiful, this native perennial subshrub can currently be seen in great abundance in the central and western San Gabriel Mountains in the aftermath of the Station Fire. Eriodictyon parryi (formerly Turricula parryi) or the poodle-dog bush is primarily a fire follower—its seeds germinate shortly after wildfires and it may even produce flowers during its first year of growth. However, this short-lived plant is typically most spectacular in its second, third and fourth years, when it reaches its peak in both size and vigor. From late spring through summer, large, showy flower clusters appear and the plants may reach up to 10 feet tall. These are composed of hundreds of lavender to bluish, one-half to three-fourths inch long flowers. Poodle-dog bush is an important plant for erosion control and provides abundant food for native pollinators.
Training people in the elements of eco-friendly landscaping practices with help from a grant.
Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden, in partnership with state, county and city agencies, is conducting a hands-on vocational training program called Water Efficient Landscaping to prepare California parolees and job seekers for sustainable landscaping and horticulture careers.
Escutcheon, Mythical Bird, Contemplations and Silent Sentinel—all gifts of Dr. Lee W. Lenz, Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden director emeritus—now comprise the Lee W. Lenz Sculpture Collection.
On October 26, 2011, the Board formally proclaimed the Lenz Sculpture Collection, consisting of all current and future pieces of artwork donated by Lenz, as a tribute to his long-time support of the art collection at RSABG.
A Real Page Turner
New event highlights rare books held in Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden’s library special collections.
We will be celebrating special occasions or visits of honored guests with the ceremonial page turning of great books such as Redouté’s Les Roses.
Visitors can come into the library to see the current selection of prized rare book holdings. Please inquire at the California Garden Shop next time you visit the Garden to see a sample of special volumes in the RSABG collection and the informative display created by RSABG staff and volunteers.
The Garden Hosts Workshop to Help Public Garden Professionals Detect Invasive Plants and Pathogens
Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden (RSABG) is hosting the Sentinel Plant Network’s western region workshop to engage public gardens, volunteers and visitors in the early detection of invasive plant pests and pathogens that threaten plant conservation efforts.
The workshop, to be held December 5 and 6, 2011, will bring together a cross section of American Public Gardens Association (APGA) member gardens from across the western U.S.
Help support student research
Graduate students in the Claremont Graduate University Botany Department at Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden recently produced the first annual Botany Graduate Student Research Calendar.
The calendar, available for purchase in the Garden's California Garden Shop, is only $10.
- Post-Doc Earns National Geographic Society Grant
- A Manzanita Lost and Found
- Searching for the Plant Families
- Two New DIGG Awards
- Botanists Travel Briefs
- Plant Safari
- CPC Annual Meeting 2012
- LaFleur to Direct Horticulture at the Garden
- New Student Grants and Visiting Scientists
- Help the Garden Grow
- David Rogers' Big Bugs
- Horticulture and Propagation of Native Plants at the Garden
- The Mediterranean City Conference 2012
- USFWS 2011 Recovery Champion
- Wall Awarded Important Conservation Award
- Volunteer in Angeles National Forest
- Botanizing Around the Globe
- Become a Fan of Getting Native
- Bumper Crop of Interns at the Garden
- Porter and Morawetz NSF Grant Awards