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The Gardens at Lake Merritt

The Gardens at Lake Merritt

Winter in the Garden

Winter seems like a quiet season in our Gardens, but there’s lots going on. Some plants are going dormant, building up energy for next year’s glory! Beneath the humble soil, microbes and organisms are chomping and pooping and mating – who knows what we could see with x-ray vision. The soil is being enriched during this deep period of regeneration. The fabulous rains have pulled some plants up out of the ground to light up our Solstice darkness. IMG_8310Check out this brilliant lime-green Oxalis, seemingly everywhere right now. Rethink it as a ground cover for a while – they disappear when it gets warmer. And it is actually edible, toss it in a fresh salad for a citrus tang.

We don’t decorate with holiday lights since we aren’t open at night, but Children’s Fairyland up the road has lot going on for kids for the holidays, see their website at http://fairyland.orgWinterlandslidehome

Check out our Facebook page to read up on daily activities, especially our expanding Monarch population!


Last but not least, our good friends at the Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) have an upcoming exhibit on Bees in January! They feature a photo of our own Bee Hotel on the cover of their next member’s magazine. IMG_7027
OMCA takes a look at the wildly diverse and intricate world of one of the most important creatures to human agriculture and the natural environment. Through family-friendly experiences, hands-on activities, and media, Bees: Tiny Insect, Big Impact touches on topics of honeybees and Bay Area beekeeping, the diversity of California native bee species, citizen science projects, and the similarities between bees and humans. Discover real bee specimens under a microscope, crawl through a human-sized beehive, and try on a beekeeper suit. The exhibition continues outside of the Gallery: get involved with citizen science organizations, check out bee hotels installed in the OMCA gardens, and take home guides on planting a bee-friendly garden and building bee hotels for your own garden. In an immersive gallery environment, explore the causes of bee population decline, learn about the significance of bees to California’s economy and ecosystems, and discover how simple but powerful actions by Californians can help bees to survive in a changing world.

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NOTE: You'll be making a secure tax-deductible donation through Square Market to the Friends of the Gardens at Lake Merritt's fiscal agent "Oakland-East Bay Garden Center Inc."