North Coast CNPS

Gardens to Visit


We've compiled a list of public and residential gardens, available for viewing at any time.

Public or Commercial Gardens 

Most are accessible at any hour. Listed north-to-south.

Patrick's Point State Park Native Plant Garden, 4150 Patrick's Point Dr., Trinidad.  Started by the Trinidad Garden Club in the 1960's and periodically re-vitalized by volunteers working with State Park staff, this diverse garden has a map and plant list to use in it.  What started as a Bracken Fern-y meadow is now quite forest-y.

Trinidad Museum Native Plant Garden, behind the museum.  A fairly large, creatively designed, volunteer planned and maintained, diverse, authentically local, native plant garden.

Arcata Tractor Supply, 5251 Mad River Parkway (off Giuntoli Ln), Arcata.  This landscape shows the result of a knowledgeable, professional landscaper working with the corporate customer's requirements.  The species are mostly California, but not Humboldt County, natives, and are cultivars that perform well in mass production and diverse garden conditions. 

Bureau of Land Management office, 1695 Heindon Rd.  Beds right in front of the building.

Potawot Health Village, 1600 Weeot Way, Arcata. (immediately north of Mad River Hospital).  Twenty acres of the United Indian Health Services campus is restored wetland meadows for cultural education, wildlife habitat, recreation, production of native plants for cultural uses, food production, and spiritual meditation, as well as stormwater management.  It is known as Ku' wah-dah-wilth ("comes back to life" in Wiyot language).  Two miles of walking trails meander through the wetlands and uplands.

Mad River Hospital, Janes Rd., Arcata.  Beds in front of the Shaw Medical Pavilion make a good effort to use Evergreen Huckleberry and a few other native species. 

Walker Garden, Humboldt State University, on the walkway between Science D and the greenhouse.  This container garden has species very carefully selected by Dr. Dennis Walker to bloom while students are present and to show a diversity of plant families.  These species are native to California, but not necessarily Humboldt Co. 

Arcata Community Center Native Plant and Wildlife Garden, on the hill beside Healthsport in Arcata (300 Community Park Way).  Established in 1999 under an agreement between CNPS and the City of Arcata, this is a diverse bed designed to attract native wildlife, in particular the six-legged kind, planned and maintained by Pete Haggard, a CNPS volunteer.  He would love some help.  

Arcata Marsh Interpretive Center, South G St.. The path up into the building wraps around the garden, which was fully replanted in 2021 by volunteers.  Maintaining this garden is another opportunity for people wanting to learn about native plants and help the community.  The center belongs to the city; Friends of Arcata Marsh organizes the volunteers. 

City of Arcata has installed native plants at many infrastructure projects, such as the Community Center, the roundabout on Sunset Ave and Foster, the firehouse on 10th St, the city parking lots on 7th St, the sidewalk strip on Samoa Ave.  Most of these show what happens with lack of maintenance (weeding) despite good intentions.

Sequoia Park Zoo, 3441 W St., Eureka.  Practicing what Douglas Tallamy advocates, for the sake of wildlife of all sizes, the zoo has firmly committed to converting their landscape entirely to native plants.  Open daily except Monday.  As of July 8, 2020, reservations required.  See the website: https://www.sequoiaparkzoo.net/    Admission charged!  Caring for animals requires money!

California Department of Fish & Wildlife,  619 Second St., Eureka.  Around two sides of the building is a carefully designed, commercially available, native plant garden.  The small trees are Strawberry Tree (Arbutus unedo), not a native, but a well behaved, easy-to-grow, right-size species related to Madrone.

Second and H Streets, a curbside garden around a City of Eureka parking lot.  Despite a troubled history highlighting the different landscaping styles of the garden creator and the city's maintenance crew, thirteen species of native, woody plants persist here, some in bizarre shapes.  There is also a non-native tree.

GHD Building, 3rd and H Streets, Eureka.  At least 23 species of natives, mostly perennials plus a few shrubs, are in the narrow beds around the parking lot and the building. 

Jefferson Community Center, 1000 B St., Eureka.  On the B St. side are two, adjacent, small pollinator gardens installed by Bill Rodstrom to show that even a small space can host a diversity of pollinators. Maintained by volunteers (as are most functions of the center).  A first installment of native plants have been planted in beds on the downhill side of the buildings.  Weeding and more planting are needed.  More volunteers! 

Eureka Waterfront Trail along Waterfront Drive west from C St.  The strip between sidewalk and street (which I'm told landscapers call the "Hell strip") has been planted with about 9 species of California native plants.

Humboldt Botanical Garden, behind College of the Redwoods.  Has an extensive California native garden, lots of other amazing gardens, and considerable trails through natural riparian and hillside habitat.  As of July 8 the garden is open with restrictions (number of visitors; masks required).  Check their website. www.hbgf.org  Admission charged; they put your money to good use! 

Humboldt Bay National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center, Loleta (Hookton Rd. exit).  A modest but sincere garden in an expansive landscape.  Check what hours the entrance gate is open and what is open during COVID 19:
https://www.fws.gov/refuge/Humboldt_Bay/visit/plan_your_visit.html

        

Residential Gardens Viewable from the Street (listed North to South)

Please respect the owner's privacy; stay on the sidewalk. Listed north-to-south. [This list is just a beginning.  If you can add to this list, please tell Carol!]

Every gardener knows that a garden is never finished.  After all, it is dealing with living, growing things, so by definition is changing constantly.  For the same reason every garden, even a native plant garden, needs maintenance, which different owners can provide in different amounts, depending on other aspects of their lives.  We appreciate these owners sharing their creations so that we can see native plants and how they perform in real gardens. 

Many gardens have non-native as well as native plants combined, for historical, sentimental, practical, or irrational reasons.  In looking at these gardens do not assume everything is native!  You have to learn to identify the species!   Some day we might have species lists for these gardens, but that is a distant prospect at the moment.  Practice native plant identification in our natural areas using a good field guide.  (See https://northcoastcnps.org/index.php/activities/plant-id-aids)

169 Driftwood Ln., Trinidad (off Patrick's Point Drive near the state park).

99 Langford Rd. (off Scenic Dr.), Trinidad  Almost entirely native, merging with the forest behind.

1386 Fernwood Dr., McKinleyville.

 322 Chartin Rd., Blue Lake.  A diverse, almost-all-native garden installed with the state's "replace your lawn" program. 

141 G St., Blue Lake.  (the corner of First and G, diagonal to post office).  Almost all natives. 

980 Union St., Arcata (between 7th and 11th, uphill side).  Always cheerful with California Poppies, this small yard is entirely native.  The owner has had to learn to pull out poppies for the sake of having other species.  She has also had to remove or prune shrubs as they reach full size.

2151 Lewis Ave, Arcata (Greenview development).  A typical front yard in a development, this garden is small but packed with diverse species to provide pollinators what they need and caterpillars for birds, while maintaining some order and attractive beds.

1701 Virginia Way, Arcata (Sunny Brae)  A stunning, remarkably artistic, and usually floriferous garden, entirely native.  The owner is now working on making the back yard a habitat garden.      

2904 Williams, Eureka  (Williams & Grotto in Henderson Center area)  The side yard on Grotto St. is almost entirely native; the front yard on Williams St. is mixed native and non-native. 

2424 B St., Eureka  Front yard is almost entirely native plants. 

2578 Donna Dr., Eureka (at the top of Humboldt Hill).  A very diverse mix of common and esoteric native species.  A list is available (possibly nearby this document on the website).  Created and maintained by Brant Landscaping. 

If you know of other gardens that should be on this list, please contact Carol at 707-822-2015 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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