Santa Barbara, CA – March 6, 2015
The Santa Barbara Botanic Garden’s annual Spring Native Plant Sale starts Saturday, April 4 and runs through Sunday, May 3, every day from 10am to 5:30pm. The Garden Growers Nursery at the Botanic Garden always has a good selection of native plants, but during the Spring Native Plant Sale, more than 6,000 plants and 500 different varieties are available. Whether you are interested in beautiful flowers, attracting butterflies or converting to a drought tolerant landscape, you will find just what you need.
“With so many native plants in spectacular bloom, this is the perfect season to fill your landscape with color,” according to Robert F. Adams, local landscape architect and past President of Santa Barbara Beautiful. “Native plantings can be utilized to create a natural look to the garden, and can even be shaped to create a unique style that can embrace the dry conditions that we have been experiencing.”
Expert Advice: Avoid costly mistakes in your plant choices by attending one of the Saturday, Garden Planning with the Experts workshops from 9:30 to noon, April 11, 18, and 25. Participants will tour the Garden with native plant experts to identify mature plants that fit their specific landscape needs. Garden experts will help you consider soil, light and water requirements in choosing the right plants for your own garden.
Monarch Butterflies: “If you want to see monarchs in the summer, you need to plant your milkweed now,” according to Frederique Lavoipierre, Education Program Manager at the Garden. “You will see monarch butterflies nectaring on a variety of plants, but they only lay their eggs on milkweed. The caterpillar lives on milkweed until it forms its jewel-like jade and gold chrysalis, and finally emerges as a butterfly. Without milkweed there are no monarchs! You can enjoy this miracle in your own backyard by planting just a couple of native milkweed plants.” Learn more about the Garden’s Milkweed to Monarchs program at www.sbbg.org/monarch.
For Your Vegetable Garden. Monarchs are not the only insects that thrive on native plants. If you have a vegetable garden, look for plants that attract insect allies to keep your garden pest-free. Serious gardeners will want to attend Garden Allies: Landscape Design for Pesticide-free Gardening on March 24 from 10am to 4pm. This detailed hands-on workshop will help you choose native plants that attract the right kind of insect to your garden to keep it pest free. Your vegetable garden and your other flowers will benefit from plants that attract a variety of butterflies, bees and other pollinators that will help your garden’s yields.
Water Wise. With another dry year predicted, this is also a good time to look at creating a landscape that uses less water and more native plants. Santa Barbara Water Wise offers a rebate program to make this cost effective and the Garden Growers Nursery has all the plants you will need, whether it is native grasses or beautiful perennials. See www.waterwisesb.org for more details.
Santa Barbara Botanic Garden members get an extra day to shop, Friday, April 3. The usual member discount is increased to 15% for one day only. Shop early, as the rare and hard-to-find species will go fast. As always, Garden staff and volunteers are available to provide expert planting advice free of charge.
2015 Spring Native Plant Sale
Date: Sat, April 4 through Sun, May 3
Time: Open Daily from 10:00am – 5:30pm
Location: Santa Barbara Botanic Garden,1212 Mission Canyon Road, just a half mile up Mission Canyon
Cost: Free to Shop
To arrange an interview or high-res photos, please contact Rebecca Mordini, Communications Coordinator, at 805-682-4726 ext. 132.