Gateways to the Communities

Gateways to the Communities Exhibition Opening Events Thursday, April 4 through Saturday, April 6

Free with Garden admission or membership.

An inspirational fusion of horticulture, science, conservation and art revitalizes the California Plant Communities at Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden.

Step off the pavement onto a new trail designed to help you explore the diversity of plant life in California. Brightly painted arbors are your threshold—gateway—to plant community interpretative hubs along the Communities Trail.

Along this new loop path you can learn how each area will evolve so that RSABG may more effectively demonstrate California plant associations while also connecting horticulture, conservation and research.

Fifty-five acres make up the California Plant Communities at Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden

The California Plant Communities offer visitors a chance to experience the distinct regional association of plants that share growing conditions. But the communities are some of the least publicly appreciated areas in the Garden. Scott LaFleur, director of horticulture, is working to change that.

“I want to make the communities more understandable to visitors,” said LaFleur. “The Gateways to the Communities will help us tell the story of our collections and share information about the connections between botanical research and conservation horticulture.”

The Gateways project is a long-term undertaking and a critical aspect of RSABG master planning that involves reorganization of the California Plant Communities. The communities’ overhaul will help RSABG better convey plant diversity and adaptations within specific geographical boundaries such as the California islands, Baja California and scrub communities.

It will rearrange the communities and gardens to put the right plant in the right place, while preserving accessioned plants that cannot be moved. Following the Master Plan, The Gateways project creates the Communities Trail, a main loop around the California Plant Communities with educational signs and occasional respite with shade, water and plant and communities information.

More than a dozen arbors donated to RSABG will soon become the thresholds—gateways—to each plant community. The brightly colored arbors will be interpretative hubs along the Communities Trail and will offer visitors an opportunity to experience the creativity and ingenuity of the RSABG horticulturists who in addition to caring for the Garden’s beautiful plant collections are creating amazing environmental art in the California Plant Communities.

Listen to an audio tour of Gateways to the Communities.

Guided Tram Tour - Third Sundays

Third Sunday of every month, 10 a.m.

First come, first served. Seating is limited.

Tours are 60-90 minutes in length.

See the plant communities of the California coast and Mojave Desert in an hour! The RSABG Guided Tram Tour offers guided exploration of the Garden’s northern 55 acres and highlights the beautiful and amazing diversity of the California Floristic Province.

Tickets are available after 8 a.m., at the admission kiosk the day of the tour. Tickets $5 per person; ticket required in addition to standard Garden admission or membership.


 

Mother's Day Champagne Brunch and Lunch - May 11

Sunday, May 11, 2014 

Brunch seating begins at 8:45 a.m.

Brunch served at 9:30 a.m. 

Lunch seating begins at 12:00 p.m.

Lunch served at 12:30 p.m.

This year, our Mother's Day Champagne Brunch and Lunch events are nestled among our new Wonders of Wildflowers Exhibit in the California Natives Container Garden. Sit amid a display of thousands of wildflowers for an unforgettable experience during this one of a kind exhibit.

Seating is limited for this exclusive annual event celebrating mothers. You'll enjoy fantastic food, superb table service and a dining atmosphere only possible at California's Native Garden; listen to live acoustic music and don't forget the giveaways we have in store for Moms at each table. Tickets inlcude free Garden admission and tickets to our popular Butterfly Pavilion for your party on Mother's Day. The Butterfly Pavilion is open 10 a.m.-3 p.m.

Complimentary tram service to and from the venue will be available beginning at 8:30 a.m. for Brunch and 11:30 for Lunch.

Tickets:

Member: Adult $48 Member Child (3-12) $30
Public: Adult $65 Child (3-12) $40

Enjoy live music, artist to be determined.

Advance tickets are required - the event will sell out. Final menu TBD and does include child-friendly and vegetarian options. Please note the RSABG member discount - to view membership options and to become a member, click here

Click here to order BRUNCH Tickets

Click here to order LUNCH Tickets

Or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information.


Final Brunch and Lunch Menus to be determined

Preset:

Entrees and Sides:

Age 12 and under:

Dessert Buffet:

Beverages:

National Public Gardens Day - May 9 Free Admission Day

Free Garden admission 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Behind-the-Scenes Open House opportunities
10 - 11:30 a.m. and 1 - 2:30 p.m.

Join Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden for this special day of celebrating the environmental stewardship, conservation, and education efforts put forth by botanical gardens around the nation.

The day will feature open house-style, behind-the-scenes looks at our diverse collections and areas not generally accessible to the public. When you arrive for this free admission day, visit our orientation station to learn how you can get behind the scenes. Follow signs to specific locations and learn first-hand about the work being done at Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden experts will highlight the important work done here on a daily basis.

Behind-the-scenes Open House Opportunities
10 - 11:30 a.m., 1 - 2:30 p.m.

  • Herbarium
  • Molecular Laboratory with Loraine Washburn, Laboratory Manager and Conservation Botanist and Botany Program Graduate Students
  • Library and Archives
  • Seed Conservation Program with Evan Meyer, Seed Conservation Program Manager
  • Nursery and Greenhouses with Valentin Arvizu, Plant Propagator

Garden Walking Tours
Start at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.

Join us for a 75-minute guided walking tours of the Garden including our Wonders of Wildflowers exhibit in the California Container Garden. The tours depart from the front patio of the Garden Shop. The walking portion of the tour is approximately one mile.

 

National Public Gardens Day was established by the American Public Gardens Association in 2009 and celebrates the vital role public gardens play in communities and highlights the environmental stewardship, conservation efforts and educational programs undertaken by public gardens across the nation. National Public Gardens Day is sponsored by American Public Gardens Association and Rainbird. See our listing here for an admission voucher.

 

Steve Comba: ARBORETUM - April 26-July 13

Steve Comba, Detail from ArboretumApril 26 through July 13, 2014

Gallery open to the public daily, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

Included with standard admission or membership. Claremont Museum of Art Members receive free Garden admission with proof of membership during the exhibit.

Click here for exhibit photos (coming soon)

A Claremont Museum of Art exhibition takes you through the artist's process in creating the 8 foot painting, Arboretum.

Follow the artist's process in creating the 8 foot painting, Arboretum, an autobiographical journey through his own work in landscape as well as a treatise on the artificial nature of painting and the objective beauty of Nature.

"This painting was a six-month journey through my archive of landscape imagery. Going back as far as 1986 (the year I received my M.F.A. from the Claremont Graduate University) I gathered photographs, sketches, images from earlier paintings, and some new material into a box. On a regular basis throughout the timeframe of the painting I would reach in, choose an image and insert it into the composition. The painting was completed when I could no longer see a place to fit another image.

It is an autobiographical work in that each and every image is a "marker" of both time and place in my own personal artistic history. Yet I also hope that it holds an interest for the viewer for the same reasons it held mine: exotic time, strange relationships and the recognition of the depth and profound beauty of nature."

-Steve Comba

Steve Comba Arboretum 2011 Oil on canvas 20x84 WEB small

Teacher Open House - August 16

August 16, 2014, 9 a.m.-12 p.m.

Free RSVP Here

RSVP by August 16. Reserve your spot online or send an email with your name, school name and district to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

  • Free Garden admission for school teachers and administrators and their immediate family.
  • Explore school tour and program displays; complete your passport to be eligible for great prizes!
  • Reserve field trips. Spring reservations fill up quick. Bring your calendar to schedule a fun and educational trip for your students.
  • Stay an hour or stay all day
  • Great prizes and giveaways
  • Free refreshments

Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden offers walking tours and programs that include activity stations to help educate students about the Golden State. Tours and programs convey the importance of native plants, cultures of indigenous people and natural history of California. RSABG tours and programs align with life science and history/social science content standards for California public schools.

Read more about RSABG School Tours and Programs

 

Upcycle: The Sculpture of LT Mustardseed - April 5-September 28

April 5 through September 28, 2014Passion-flower - web detail

Included with standard admission or membership. Sculptures are exhibited throughout the grounds.

CLICK HERE for photos of LT Mustardseed and samples of her work 

The Garden is thrilled to welcome the art and sculpture of LT Mustardseed for this special exhibit! LT Mustardseed is a full time working designer and sculptor native to Los Angeles. She has successfully created numerous public and private art commissions. LT's sculptures will be on display throughout Garden grounds April 5 through September 28 for our members and guests to enjoy.

Sculptures range from a gigantic, 20-foot Dragonfly and massive Demoiselle to a 6-foot hummingbird, larger-than-life "Harley Bird", mechanical passion flowers (pictured above, in detail), fire-breathing pitcher plants, whimsical animals and fanciful creations.

April 4, 5:30 p.m. until 7:30 p.m. RSABG Member Preview and Reception with LT Mustardseed.
Sponsored by Some Crust Bakery.

Artist notes and statements:

LT in Studio - web"When appropriate I recycle everyday objects into bold, colorful and playful images. Nature themes are often re-occurring in my work. I love working with various types of metals, the metallurgy, the material, its movement and form.

My use of machinery and custom paint finishes honor the traditions of our past generations, as well as creating unique works of art that represents our own time and place. I like to integrate industrial design elements such as artistic site furnishings, creative bike racks, and lighting. I have experience working with the best design teams in Los Angeles, including Structural Engineers, Architects, Landscape Architects, City planning, and the MTA.

Design aesthetic, long-term durability and quality are paramount to my process.

I have full fabrication capabilities in studio and am a licensed LA-City Certified welder. Possibilities of creations are endless. I am Veteran of Desert Storm and a self-taught, non-institutionalized artist.

I have been practicing artistic expression since childhood. At age 5 I wanted to be a photographer then a painter. Meanwhile collecting tools from Grandpa Mason, building anything and everything; each summer was a new conquest.

It wasn't until my late 20's that Artistic expression became full time. Designing and creating is what makes me the most happy, from then on I believed in realizing my dreams are possible."

"If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you." -Matthew 17:20

-LT Mustardseed

LT 2014 Salute - web

Wildflower Festival - April 19-20

April 19-20 Annual Wildflower FestivalPoppy web
All Wildflower Festival events are free with Garden admission or membership.

April 21 Wildflower Festival Senior Day
Free Garden admission, refreshments, walking and tram tours for guests over the age of 65.

Many events around Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden celebrate the beauty and diversity of California wildflowers.

  • Southern California wildflowers gently collected and brought indoors for an intimate viewing at the Wildflower Show, 10 a.m. until 4 p.m.
    • Enjoy special presentations within the wildflower display room, featuring plant families and collection sites; check back for exact times, TBD.
    • Learn how herbarium specimens are created and why they're important
    • See research projects underway by Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden scientists to document the rich flora of Southern California in an educational display.
  • Experience the Garden wildflowers. From Fay's Wildflower Meadow to Ceanothus and Salvia across Indian Hill Mesa, the Garden is in full bloom.
  • Weekend Wildflower Walks Meet us at the Admission Kiosk for guided walking tour with nature interpreters. Tours begin at 10 a.m. on Saturday and and 1 p.m. on Sunday.
  • Visit the Wonders of Wildflowers (WOW!) Exhibit - On exhibit in the California Natives Container Garden.
  • Fresh Street Food TruckGrab some delicious, fresh food at Fresh Street Food Truck, onsite 10 a.m.-4 p.m. both Saturday and Sunday. Fresh Street Food Truck uses only fresh, all natural ingredients, specializing in panini sandwiches, handcrafted drinks and other fresh fare. Check out their menu!

A tradition since the early 1930s, the Wildflower Festival is Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden's longest-running seasonal event and coincides with our state-recognized California Native Plant Week, (the third week of April each year)

Over the years, the show has offered an opportunity for visitors to view flowers of species that they may not have otherwise been able to see. Flowers are gently prepared, carefully identified and exhibited indoors.

The week proceeding the show, teams of RSABG staff, volunteers and research associates undertake spring collecting trips to sites where studies to document the flora are underway, adding to scientific knowledge of these poorly known places and sharing the beauty of California wildflowers with Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden visitors. The geographically-diverse approach offers a diverse variety of species gathered and creates a beautiful and educational display.

The flower species collected are dependent upon many factors, including seasonal rainfall. This variability produces a tremendous variety of flower species every year. After the wildflower show, many of the specimens are made available for research and education for RSABG staff and students, others are offered to local botany classes for study and the flowers in suitable condition may be preserved in a collection for future generations to learn from and enjoy.

We hope you are able to take the time to visit local wildflower habitats, but please do not collect plants from the wild.