Tilden Regional Park, Regional Parks Botanic Garden

Notice
REGIONAL PARKS BOTANIC GARDEN NOW OPEN BY RESERVATION

Rules | Map

The Botanic Garden is open to individuals and households by making free reservations with (up five individuals per reservation). Pets are not allowed in the Botanic Garden. Up to two reservations per household may be made each week.

At this time, the Botanic Garden will be open to visitors on Saturdays, Sundays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM. The latest reservation or visitor entry into the Botanic Garden will be 3:30 PM.

If you would like to schedule a reservation to visit the Botanic Garden please call our office at (510) 544-3169, or email BGarden@ebparks.org. Reservations can be scheduled with Botanic Garden office staff from Mondays through Fridays from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM, up to two weeks in advance. Your reservation is not a confirmed reservation until you speak with our office staff and receive a reservation confirmation email.

Be prepared to provide all of the following information when making a reservation:

· Primary contact person (your full name)
· Primary phone number (is this a land line? or cell phone?)
· Primary contact’s email address
· Primary contact person’s home address
· Number of individuals in your reservation

Please be aware that reservations at this time will not include day camps, school groups, company outings, wedding parties, wedding photos shoots, picnics, sunbathing, educational tours, or film shoots. Lounging on the lawns will not be permitted in the garden as all visitors are expected to move through the Botanic Garden at a reasonable pace. The Botanic Garden’s Visitor Center, offices, water fountains, and trash and recycling containers are not available in the Botanic Garden at this time. A water fountain, and trash and recycling containers are also available at Camp Oaks (the Botanic Garden’s parking lot). As always, public restrooms are available at Camp Oaks (in the Botanic Garden’s parking lot).

Upon entry to the Botanic Garden the Primary Contact person may need to provide an ID and groups must arrive at your scheduled reservation time to check in. If you are late to arrive, you will be admitted. Do not arrive significantly early, as you will not be admitted until your reservation time.

Social distancing requirements are in effect at the Botanic Garden. Visitors must always wear a mask, and keep a minimum of six feet distance from others. On narrow garden paths and trails, persons or small groups closest to an intersecting trail must back up into that intersection, to safely yield the right-of-way to an oncoming individual or small group. If required social distancing and mask wearing rules are not followed, you may be asked to leave.

At this time, IF the maximum number of visitor reservations for the day has NOT been reached by scheduled reservations, “walk-in” visitors will be allowed to make onsite reservations at the gate and will be allowed to enter the Botanic Garden until the maximum visitor number for the day has been reached. At this time, the scheduled maximum number of visitors per open day is 120 visitors.

• List of COVID-19 related closures
 

Park Info

Address
Entrances off Wildcat Canyon Road and Grizzly Peak Boulevard,
Shasta Rd, Berkeley, CA  (Directions)

Garden Entrance
Intersection of Wildcat Canyon Road and South Park Drive. Side entrance at Anza View Road

Phone Number
(510) 544-3169
Toll Free: 888-EBPARKS (888-327-2757), option 3, extension 4507

Park Hours
October - May
   8:30am - 5pm
June - Sept.
   8:30am - 5:30pm
Closed New Year's Day,    Thanksgiving, and Christmas.

Fees
Parking: No fee
Dogs: Dogs are not allowed

Maps
> Trail Map 
> Brochure with Map [PDF]
> Trail Map [PDF]
> Wildcat Canyon Road
> Grizzly Peak Boulevard

About The Park

The Regional Parks Botanic Garden was founded on January 1, 1940. Situated in Tilden Regional Park's beautiful Wildcat Canyon in the heart of the north Berkeley Hills, the garden is devoted to the collection, growth, display, and preservation of the native plants of California. The state is a vast region of many floral areas, such as seacoast bluffs and coastal mountains, interior valleys, arid foothills, alpine zones, and two kinds of desert. California embraces nearly 160,000 square miles - imagine 160,000 square miles of California set in a garden that can be walked in a day.

The public is welcome in this garden, which is open between the hours of 8:30am and 5pm from October 1 to May 31, and 8:30am and 5:30pm from June 1 to September 30. The garden is closed New Year's Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. All specimens are landscaped into a delightful setting, offering many enjoyable days of exploration, relaxation, and contemplation. To the student, the Botanic Garden offers the premier Northern California venue in which to study the state's native plants without wandering far from home or dorm. Indoors, in the Visitor Center, lectures and slide shows are scheduled on most Saturdays from November through February, and an exhibit pertaining to the native flora is usually to be found in the auditorium.

Notable among the many specimens that have been brought in from all corners of the state are representatives of nearly all the state's conifers and oaks, and probably the most complete collections of California manzanitas to be found anywhere. There are also extensive collections of California native bunchgrasses, bulbs, aquatic plants, and representatives of about 300 taxa that are classified in the California Native Plant Society's landmark study, "Inventory of Rare and Endangered Vascular Plants of California."

Park Calendar

Park Features

The State in 10 Geographically Based Sections

For the sake of clarity of display, the majority of the garden is divided into ten geographically-based sections. The sections are: Southern California (plants designated by sand-colored labels), Shasta-Klamath (green labels), Valley-Foothill (yellow labels), Santa Lucia (orange labels), Channel Islands (black labels), Sierran (blue labels), Redwood (red labels), Sea Bluff (brown labels), Pacific Rain Forest (green labels), and Franciscan (yellow labels). The Canyon (brown labels) section at the northernmost part of the garden, is not geographically based. Here, the plants are grouped according to their individual horticultural requirements.

There are also three subsections: aquatic plants, coastal dune plants, and the Antioch Dunes of Contra Costa County. 

The Best Times for Blooms

Each year in the Botanic Garden the first plants to bloom do so around mid-December and early January, initiating a flowering succession that makes a continuous show for fully seven months. No month is devoid of plants of some attraction or other. The following schedule names the more prominent plants and the months in which they are usually at their best.

MONTH PROMINENT PLANTS
January: silktassels, manzanitas, manzanitas, and more manzanitas, osoberry, currants
February: barberries, Dutchman's pipe, fuchsia-flowered gooseberry, milkmaids, western leatherwood, bluff wallflower, scoliopus
March: redbud, pink-flowering currant, California poppy, trilliums, shooting stars, wallflowers, fritillaries, fawn lilies, rock cress, pussy willows, trees begin to leaf out
April: California rose-bay or rhododendron, woolly blue curls, ninebark, mountain spiraea, summer holly, main ceanothus groups, Chinese houses, irises, storax, blazing star
May: monkeyflowers, fremontias, carpenteria, tidy tips, bush poppies, brodiaeas, mariposa tulips, cacti, clarkias, mock orange
June: western azalea, matilija poppy, fireweed, ocean spray, sweetshrub, mariposas, Donner buckwheat, clarkias, columbines
July: red and yellow bush penstemons and other perennial penstemons, scarlet mimulus
August: wild buckwheats, late penstemons, evening primroses, gum plants, scarlet larkspur, Milo Baker's lupine
September: California fuchsias, tarweeds, buckwheats, hibiscus, helianthus, late penstemons
October-November: fall color of snowberries, berries of the madrone, leaves of cottonwoods, deciduous oaks, dogwoods, hawthorn, willows, vine maple, chaparral currant blooms
December: first manzanita blooms, colorful twigs of deciduous shrubs

For more information on the Botanic Garden, classes, or events, visit Friends of the Regional Parks Botanic Garden web site at http://www.nativeplants.org/. For more information about volunteer opportunities, call the garden at (510) 544-3169.

Park Activities

In 2020, the Regional Parks Botanic Garden will not be having a large spring (April) plant sale, however we have scheduled our annual Fall Plant Sale as usual on the first Saturday in October (October 3, 2020). Bring carboard boxes to carry your purchases.

Volunteers facilitate plant sales on Thursday mornings 9am to 12pm, and the first Saturday of each month 11am to 2pm.  Seeds are available for sale in the Visitor Center Lobby during open hours. For more information, visit Plant Sales and Seeds.

Enjoy free docent-guided garden tours most Saturdays at 2pm; Sundays at 11am and 2pm. Meet us at the Visitors Center. Group tours are available by appointment; call (510) 544-3169. Docent training is offered most years.

ADA accessibility iconPark Accessibility

The Botanic Garden is partially accessible to persons with disabilities. This includes the bathrooms at the parking lot. The most accessible paths contour around the garden to right and left from the main entrance. Visitor Center is fully accessible to wheelchair users.

To Reach the Park

Directions: Regional Parks Botanic Garden 

Trail Map

Click the map image below to see an enlarged version.

Open Full Size Image

Events:

Tuesday, July 7, 2020 (Today)

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