North Coast CNPS


GOING NATIVE: Advice and resources for planting California natives

General advice

  • Look for natives already thriving on your property, in your neighborhood, or in nearby greenbelts.  Be wary of assuming that frequently used plants or those growing in undeveloped areas are native.  Many abundant plants are actually exotics; some have naturalized and become invasive.
  • Respect each plant species' cultural needs:  soil type and the amount of sun and water required.

The enemy: Invasive weeds.  See Invasive Weeds of Humboldt County booklet. Other useful references: Invasive Plants of California’s Wildlands, and Northwest Weeds (both of these titles are available through the Humboldt County Library).

Where to see landscaping with natives (north to south)

  • Patrick’s Point Native Plant Garden in Patrick's Point State Park, near the Sumeg Village. 4150 Patrick’s Point Dr.  Trinidad. Planted long ago by the Patrick's Point Garden Club and recently cleaned up.
  • Trinidad Museum Garden, 400 Janis Court at Patricks Point Drive, Trinidad. 677-3883,
  • Potawot Health Village (outside of the United Indian Health Services bldg), 1600 Weott Way, off Janes Rd., Arcata, just north of Mad River Hospital
  • Pacific Union School Native Plant Arboretum. 3001 Janes Rd., Arcata. Visit outside of school hours.  Located behind school garage, adjacent to hospital emergency room.  Volunteers ran out of energy, but the shrubs and trees are still there.
  • Diamond Drive Trailhead to the Arcata Community Forest, at the top of Diamond Drive. The strip between street and forest was planted with hundreds of natives by the neighbor, a CNPSer.
  • HSU Campus Center for Appropriate Technology (CCAT), HSU campus, Arcata.  826-3551. Located behind the parking lot at 14th and Union Streets, or call CCAT for directions
  • HSU Behavioral Sciences Building, Arcata. On Union Street between 14th and 16th St
  • Arcata Community Center Native Plant & Wildlife Garden, 300 Community Park Way, Arcata.  A large bed on the hill west of Healthsport, planted and maintained by North Coast Chapter CNPS with support of City of Arcata.
  • Arcata Marsh Visitor’s Center, 569 S. G St., Arcata. 826-2359
  • Humboldt Coastal Nature Center, 220 Stamps Lane, Manila.  Headquarters of Friends of the Dunes has a living roof planted with dune plants.  Volunteers are needed to help maintain and improve this planting.
  • The Blood Bank, 2524 Harrison (corner of St. Joseph Ln), Eureka
  • Winzler and Kelly Building, 718 third street, at H and Third, Eureka.

Lost Foods Garden, H and Second, Eureka, a diverse planting in the bed between sidewalk and parking lot, created and maintained by Lost Foods Nursery but modified by city staff.

  • Humboldt Botanical Garden, at the north end of the College of the Redwoods Campus, 7351 Tompkins Hill Rd, Eureka. Call for hours: 442-5139.
  • Humboldt Bay National Wildlife Refuge Visitor's Center, Loleta. 733-5406
  • California Conservation Corps offices, 1500 Alamar Way, Fortuna
  • Humboldt Redwoods State Park Visitors’ Center, Weott. 946-2409


Where to learn about native plants

  • College of the Redwoods courses: Consult their listing.
  • HSU Extended Education and Osher Lifelong Learning Inst. sometimes offer classes including native plants.
  • CNPS plant sales, walks, field trips, garden tours, monthly programs (fall-spring), and our Spring Wildflower Show.  Look for listings in local newspapers or on our website
  • Friends of the Dunes ( and Friends of Arcata Marsh (  offer frequent docent-led walks and restoration work days that focus on plants.

Where to purchase native plants

  • North Coast CNPS: plant sales in May and Sept.-Oct. Or, make requests through our Plant Sale Chairs, Chris Beresford This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 826-0259; and Anna Bernard  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 826-7247.
  • Samara Restoration, Dowes Prairie Rd., McKinleyville. All natives; great variety. Call for appointment. Eric Johnson 834-4379.
  • Lost Foods Nursery. Monty Caid manager. Redwood Acres Fairground, Eureka. Call for an appointment 268-8447. 
  • Jameson Creek Nursery, Fortuna. Local Farmer’s Markets or call 725-5084
  • Potato Rock Nursery, Arcata Farmer’s Market or mail order.  839-9175, 
  • Telos Rare Bulbs, Ferndale. Native and exotic bulbs. Mail order only.
  • Larner Seeds, Bolinas, CA. Mail order. website:
  • Local Nurseries that carry mostly non-native plants, but have a small section of native plants (keep asking!):
  • Miller Farms Nursery, 1828 Central Ave., McKinleyville  839-1571
  • Mad River Gardens, 3384 Janes Rd. Arcata  822-7049
  • Pierson’s Garden Shop & Nursery, 4100 Broadway, Eureka. 441-2713

Local landscape designers who work with natives (Some also offer installation)

  • Garden Visions Landscape Design, Donna Wildearth, 707-476-0273 (Eureka)
  • Chris Brant, Brant's Landscape, Eureka, 707-496-1547
  • Samara Restoration, Eric Johnson, 707-834-4379


Printed/website resources

Lists of plants suited to the North Coast, and related website links are available on our chapter's web site:

A list of books useful for identifying native plants and for using them in gardens is also on our web site.