The Mediterranean Garden is the newest garden in the park and is nearing completion. In 1999 Sean O’Hara of the Mediterranean Garden Society (MGS) began investigating the possibility of creating a Mediterranean display garden to reflect the philosophy and aesthetic of the Mediterranean Garden Society, but the timing was not optimal and the garden was not built. The present project was started in 2007 with construction beginning in June 2008.
The site is unique and beautiful. The Palm Garden (Palmetum) is a dramatic backdrop with its large palms and colorful tropical plants and the historic Easterbrook Wellhead Fountain, a gift to the City of Oakland in 1914, is its centerpiece. The decomposed granite paths radiate out between mounded beds of Mediterranean plants in five different color palette combinations. The garden provides inspiration for gardening with low water-use plants appropriate for the Bay Area.
You can sit on the teak benches, watch the bees and hummingbirds pollinating the flowers and be drawn away to the beautiful gardens of Europe or other mediterranean regions of the world.
It was the first East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD) WaterSmart Garden Grant winner. It uses weather station controlled drip irrigation and all the plants selected are water thrifty by nature. In addition to the EBMUD grant, other funds were donated by foundations, many private individuals, and the Office of Parks and Recreation.
In 2007 with the Sensory Garden under its belt the Oakland-East Bay Garden Center decides to build the Mediterranean Garden using the same support team that was used for the Sensory Garden. The original design and plant list of the MGS project were the starting point of the project. Tricia Christopher, Landscape Architect did the design, Paul Cowley of Potomac Waterworks planned the renovation of the Easterbrook Wellhead Fountain, Nelson Kirk of the Palm Society undertook the irrigation, and Bruce Cobbledick with the help of others began fund raising.
In spring of 2008 after meetings with Oakland Public Works and the Office of Parks and Recreation the project began. Some sickly trees were removed and the Easterbrook Wellhead Fountain renovation begun. In June 2008 Oakland Public Works began the grading of the paths with the excess soil used to create the mounded beds. The underground plumbing part of the irrigation was put in and bed preparation and the bedrock base for the paths was completed. We were able to take advantage of our unusually mild winter to put in the drip irrigation and began the planting of the quadrants in January 2009. The decomposed granite on the paths and the installation of two benches were completed for the 50-100th Anniversary of the Garden Center and the Office of Parks and Recreation in June. There are more plants to fill in the gaps still to be planted; so it is with gardens. The hands in the dirt part of the garden has been done and will be maintained by volunteers. Please come and enjoy this special garden and if so moved become one of the enthusiastic volunteers.
for Lakeside Park Garden Center
Inside Lakeside Park (Lake Merritt)
666 Bellevue Avenue, Oakland, California 94610