Native Planting History

Almost lost and defaced on the western slope of the park is a historic sign announcing the building of Native Plant Communities. When put up, the sign faced the sea; today, a tree shrouds it. For three years starting in 1981, shortly after the first phase of the park was opened, a handful of intensely dedicated naturalists led by Charli Danielsen (now of Berkeley’s Native Here Nursery) fought terrible soil conditions, harsh winds, drought, and overwhelming odds to establish on this manufactured landscape a patch of California nature the way it used to be. One of this hardy band was David Amme, a prominent botanist and ecologist. In 1987, he published a paper describing conditions on the site and the work done to build native plant communities on a seashore landfill. It will be of interest to everyone concerned with the history of the park generally and with the wild and beautiful forested grove on its western slope in particular. Thanks to naturalist and Conservancy Board Member Jutta Burger for locating and obtaining this reprint; read it here.

Sign put up facing the bay in 1981 now obscured by a tree
Face of sign now almost illegible, announces NATIVE PLANT COMMUNITIES
Opening of David Amme’s article on the project; click to view PDF.

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