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So far Danielle has created 120 blog entries.

Gardens are Caterpillar Nursery and Butterfly Haven

The butterfly whisperers are at it again. A group of volunteers led by Park Supervisor Tora Rocha, who successfully incubated and released dozens of Monarch butterflies over the past several months, is having equal success with Swallowtails.

Visit the Gardens and let us know how many butterflies you spot.

Swallowtail butterflies are large, colorful butterflies in the […]

August Garden Events and Gardening Tips

August Special Events
All Shows and Events are Free

August 19, Sunday, 8:30-9:30 am: Dedication of 10 Japanese lanterns at the Torii Gate at Lake Merritt. The dedication is part of the Oakland and Fukuoka, Japan 50th Anniversary Sister City relationship. A reception will follow at Children’s Fairyland, Bellevue Avenue, from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. This event is free […]

Join Oakland and Fukuoka Dignitaries for Japanese Lantern Dedication at Torii Gate August 19


Oakland, Japanese Sister City Mark 50 Years with Local Events
 This year, Oakland and Fukuoka, Japan celebrate the 50th Anniversary of establishing a Sister City relationship with events here in Oakland August 17-20, including a lanterns and cherry tree dedication in The Gardens at Lake Merritt Sunday, August 19.

In 1962 the city of Oakland formed a […]

Tasting the Summer Bounty



The Edible Garden’s July Open House  celebrated the summer harvest with demonstrations by many of the 12 non-profits stewarding educational plots. Participants were offered tastes from the gardens including herbal teas and homemade Cambodian dishes, salsa and pesto. People’s Victory Garden shared an abundance of freshly picked chard and summer squash with visitors.

Many participants were delighted by […]

Mediterranean Brunch Awaits Volunteers

Enjoy volunteering in the Gardens the first and/or third Saturday mornings of the month and receive a  half-off coupon from Bacheesos (adjacent to the Gardens on the corner of Grand and Bellevue) for the restaurant’s popular Saturday Brunch Buffet featuring fabulous organic Mediterranean salads and entrees.

The Friends of the Gardens at Lake Merritt greatly […]

Completed Japanese Garden Fence and Gates Dedicated with Blessings and Chimes


Dick Austin, President Friends of the Gardens at Lake Merritt; Dennis Makishima, founder aesthetic pruning classes; Reverend Taniguichi; Bill Castellon, President Friends of the Japanese Garden; and Jay van Arsdale, artist.

Reverend Taniguchi sounded a bell chime, fluttered flower petals and  encouraged people to know this garden as a place of peace.

The voice of Reverend Zuikei […]

July Garden Open House Delights

More than 350 attendees enjoyed a beautiful day in the Gardens as part of Oakland Parks and Recreation’s Open House Program.  A warm, sunny day and the blooming gardens provided a perfect backdrop to gardening and cooking demonstrations, garden tours, music, refreshments and children’s activities.  Special thanks to the Oakland Community Garden Program, Peoples’ Victory […]

July Garden Events and Gardening Tips 2012

 July Special Events
All Shows and Events are Free

July 7, Saturday – 11am: Japanese Garden Fence and Gate Completion Ceremony. Meet in the Japanese Garden to honor Jay van Arsdale and his students for their beautiful work on this traditional Japanese fence and gate.

July 14, Saturday – 11am to 3pm:  Lakeside Park Open House: The City of Oakland […]

June Garden Events and Gardening Tips

June Special Events
All Shows and Events are Free

June  2 & 3,  Saturday and  Sunday – 10am-4pm:  Bay Area Satsuki Azalea Bonsai Show in the Lakeside Park Garden Center, adjacent to the Gardens at Lake Merritt.

June 9 & 10, Saturday and Sunday – 10am-5pm:  California Suiseki Society Show in the Lakeside Park Garden Center. Suiseki (水石) is the Japanese art of stone […]

Gardens “The Heart of Oakland”– Oakland Magazine

OAKLAND MAGAZINE –  “AAA’s Via magazine proclaimed The Gardens at Lake Merritt one of the top five California gardens, yet this Oakland oasis still remains a charming little secret for many locals.”

“If Lake Merritt is considered the gem of Oakland, then the 50-year-old gardens are the city’s heart. ”

““A garden is a reflection of its […]