The California Native Garden in Lake Cunningham Regional Park in San Jose, California, is a project of the California Native Plant Society (Santa Clara Valley Chapter). Planned in cooperation with park staff, the project attracts volunteers from the community as well as local high schools and colleges. It has received grants from San Jose Beautiful, Community Action and Pride, BeautifySJ, and a San Jose City Council commendation in 2005.

Today, the Native Garden covers a 2 acre swath between the southeastern end of the lake and the adjacent dirt parking lot. It has become a destination for walkers, birders, photographers, and others who value and enjoy nature-based recreation.

20151121_103514_Cunningham Ave

Western sycamore and toyon are colorful companions in November

The mission is to preserve and enhance Lake Cunningham Park’s environment by removing invasive plants and planting California native wildflowers, perennials, and shrubs; to provide summer shade through native tree planting; to encourage community participation and ownership; to create a sustainable, low-maintenance landscape; to enhance nature-based recreation; to create habitat for birds and wildlife.

Volunteers are welcome at the native garden, where they can fulfill community service requirements by prior appointment. Workdays are every Saturday 8-10am. Tasks include removing invasive plants, mulching, planting native plants, labeling, and watering. Individuals may volunteer by RSVPing at the meetup link below. Prior experience is not required. Volunteers are trained for the tasks at hand.

This is a good opportunity for anyone interested in learning about the environment, botany, horticulture, and California native plants. If you enjoy working outdoors with a view of the lake, amidst native habitat and many opportunities for observing wildlife, you will enjoy volunteering here.

To volunteer, sign up through this CNPS-SCV Meetup group. Look for events titled “Habitat Restoration @ Lake Cunningham“.

To get weekly reports of our activities, join our mailing list by clicking here.

For more information, contact: Arvind Kumar, email: chhaprahiya at yahoo.com
(Replace “at” with @ sign)

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