Orange County’s largest California Friendly ® demonstration garden.
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The 2.5 acre Coastkeeper Garden is located at Santiago Canyon College in the City of Orange. This unique, sustainable garden hosts plants from six southern California native habitats as well as California Friendly ® plants from around the world. The Master Plan incorporates six California Friendly ® vignettes (garden rooms) into “backyard” landscapes that harmonize with the native plant habitat throughout the Garden.
The Coastkeeper Garden is open to the public Wednesday through Friday from 9 am – 6 pm, Saturday and Sunday from 10 am – 7 pm.
Volunteer at the Garden - Docents Needed!!!
Learn more about the Natural Play Garden here!
New tool for your landscaping needs!
Chris Packer, a graduate student at Duke University, came to Coastkeeper in the summer of 2010 to work on his master’s thesis about what is going to be accomplished at the Coastkeeper Garden. By the Spring of 2012, Chris complete his master’s thesis, which includes an 87 page maintenance manual for the garden. Chris also created a web based water usage tool for landscaping that can be used for Orange, Los Angeles and San Diego Counties. Check out these amazing resources below:
- Water Usage Geospatial Tool and Maintenance Plan for a Southern California Demonstration Garden
- Landscape Water Requirements Using a Coastkeeper Garden Plant Mix
Coastkeeper receives $590,000 to complete the Coastkeeper Garden!
After years of hard work, Coastkeeper now has the resources to fully build the Coastkeeper Garden. Coastkeeper will be able to complete construction of the Coastkeeper Garden, thanks to this award from the Nature Educational Facilities grant program, part of Prop 84. In a highly competetive pool of 300 applicants, Coastkeeper is deeply honored to be one of 44 chosen for funding. Stay tuned for a LOT of activity at our Garden in the coming months!
See our latest updates: Garden Construction Photo Journal!
The Purpose of the Coastkeeper Garden
- Why? Urban landscapes contribute significantly to coastal pollution mainly through inappropriate gardening practices such as over-watering, poor run-off management, and over-use of pesticides and fertilizers. The California Friendly ® and native plants featured at the Coastkeeper Garden will require less water, fertilizers, and herbicides than our typical landscaping choices. The Coastkeeper Garden will also highlight new and improved technologies such as ET controllers, drip irrigation, alternative turf, and reservoir style patio containers that decrease water use. Other Garden features include:
- Education: A wealth of educational opportunities exists at the Coastkeeper Garden. The purpose of the Garden is to teach the community about the importance of individual stewardship in protecting our natural resources. Activities will range from field trips for school children to college research projects, drought tolerant landscape demonstrations and classes on local natural history.
According to the California Urban Water Conservation Council (2005), demonstration gardens “increase the public’s awareness of the importance of landscape water use efficiency and inspire them to action.” Our vision is that Garden visitors will adopt a new gardening culture. Our sustainable Garden will: promote self-sufficiency with regard to materials and maintenance, increase public access to open space and gathering places; increase urban canopy cover and ecological habitats; reconnect residents to our native habitats; and create new standards for aesthetic and landscape management in parks and urban landscapes.
- Preserve our Natural Heritage- As Orange County moves closer to build-out, native species of plants, birds, butterflies, and wildlife will be negatively impacted. Local residents will become more disconnected from the natural environment. The Coastkeeper Garden will increase public awareness of the importance of preserving our native habitats by representing them in a public garden. It is our hope that garden visitors will encourage their public leaders to utilize public space in order to preserve our natural heritage.
- Promote Drought Tolerant Landscaping- Over fifty percent of Orange County’s water is used for landscaping, including parks, urban lawns and golf courses. As options for increasing imported water supplies dwindle, residents will need to adopt a conservation lifestyle to meet future water needs. Experts agree that outdoor use can be reduced up to forty percent with proper irrigation technology and drought tolerant plants. The Coastkeeper Garden will offer practical landscaping advice on how residents and public agencies can significantly reduce their water use.
- Reduce Urban Runoff- Inefficient landscape water use generates urban runoff that pollutes our waterways and coastal areas. Beach postings and closures due to bacterial laden urban runoff have plagued Orange County for years. Volunteers and visitors to the Coastkeeper Garden will learn how their current behaviors could be negatively impacting our coast and corrective actions that can be taken to improve the environment.
Major Supporters of the Coastkeeper Garden:
Thank you to our other Garden supporters:
|Allergan Foundation||Beckman Coulter Foundation||CAL FIRE||Engineering Associates|
|ET Water||Hunter Industries, Inc.||Hydropoint Data Industries, Inc.||Irvine Ranch Water District|
|The Irvine Company||Kenneth Lester Foundation||Lesa Jones Plants, Inc.||Imperial Sprinkler Supply|
|Neal Trucking Company||Orange County Community Foundation||Professional Plastics||Rhino Concrete Pumping Corp|
|Robertson Ready Mix||Southern California Edison||Shadetree Partnership||Southwest Boulder Company|
|Wells Fargo Foundation||West Coast Grading, Inc.||Western Digital Foundation||American Fence Rental|
|South Coast Plaza||Farmers and Merchants Bank||Survey & Mapping Sciences, Santiago Canyon College|