While the land in the Nature Center will remain untouched, a portion of the 250 acres which has been previously grazed will be slowly planted (using sustainable water and cultural methods whenever possible) into a Botanic Garden (under development) with a wide collection of plants for education and protection. The goal is to create a living museum, a “plant ark,” and an excellent opportunity to learn about plants and maintain genetic resources. Forestfarm Nursery‘s extensive collection of plants (including a large selection of native Siskiyou plants) will be an early basis for both the Botanic Garden and Pacifica’s School of Practical Horticulture (planned for the future).
Planning for the Botanic Garden was begun by a group of plant “fanatics” from the West Coast. The current plans include the following:
- Most plants will be arranged by geo-botanical areas as well as good design principles. Regions will include Eastern United States Prairies, Great Basin, Asia, and Mediterranean Europe plus a large area for our local Pacific Northwest and Klamath-Siskiyou Mountains.
- An interior loop road circling through the Botanic Garden will take vehicles past 10-15 small highlight areas of 1-5 acres each. For example, the Siskiyou area will have 2 highlight areas: one for a serpentine outcrop and one for a Darlingtonia fen. The Asian area will have a Himalayan rock garden and bamboo forest highlight area. These smaller, intensively planted and interpreted areas will be access points to the longer interconnecting trails throughout the garden.
- The larger areas will be intersected by a variety of adjustable theme trails, from plant uses to landscape design. Each of these trails will have some stations for hands-on activities to involve visitors of all ages with plants.
A note to our visitors: Our gardens are still in their infancy at this time. The rocks and trees in our Rock Garden and Western Native Garden are the “bones” of our botanic gardens which will be augmented with time, additional finances, and the completion of Forestfarm Nursery‘s move to Pacifica. In the meantime, we welcome you to enjoy the ambience and wild landscape that Pacifica provides! You can also take advantage of the “Botanical Garden in pots” provided by Forestfarm at Pacifica.
The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time to plant a tree is now. ~