Taking advantage of the spring-like weather in the Sacramento valley, I recently spent an afternoon at the UC Davis Arboretum.
I have visited many times over the past few years, enjoying the ever-changing flora, the frequent sightings of birds and other creatures, and the peaceful, meditative ambiance of this Yolo County treasure.
Although some of the paths are not wheelchair-friendly, much of the Arboretum is accessible.
The text below is from the Arboretum’s website. The photos were all taken on a beautiful Friday in February, 2016.
I hope you will be inspired to visit.
A Little History
According to their website:
The UC Davis Arboretum was founded in 1936 to support teaching and research at the University of California. The Arboretum occupies 100 acres along the banks of the old north channel of Putah Creek, in California’s Central Valley.
Our collections include 22,000 trees and plants adapted to a Mediterranean climate, with hot, dry summers and cool, wet winters. The plants are arranged in a series of gardens that represent different geographic areas, plant groups, or horticultural themes.
Unlike the Pacific coast, which has a very mild climate where most plants flourish, California’s Central Valley has a climate of extremes. Temperatures in Davis range from 14°F to 118°F, and average rainfall is only 19 inches per year. The Arboretum is the main source of horticultural information for inland California.
The UC Davis Arboretum is committed to practicing, promoting and teaching about sustainable horticulture.
Traditional methods of yard care use lots of water, contaminate streams and rivers with pesticide runoff, and contribute to air pollution with emissions from power equipment. Arboretum visitors can learn about more environmentally-friendly alternatives such as Mediterranean-style garden design, water-saving irrigation systems, mulching, companion plantings, biological pest control, and other sustainable practices that reduce the use of water, energy, and chemical inputs and support native pollinators, birds, and beneficial insects.
Plan your visit
There is no charge to visit the Arboretum. The gardens are open 24 hours a day, every day of the year. You can download a visitor map, or pick one up at Arboretum Headquarters. The office is open Monday–Friday, 8 am–5 pm.
Parking is available at several visitor parking lots along the length of the Arboretum. Parking is free on Saturday and Sunday and costs $9.00/car on weekdays. Permit machines in the visitor parking lots accept bills, coins, ATM and credit cards.
The lawns at the west end near Peter J. Shields Grove are perfect for informal games and picnics. Picnic tables are located behind Putah Creek Lodge and in the Redwood Grove.
The west end of the Arboretum and the Arboretum Terrace Garden at the east end of the Arboretum are level and most easily accessible to wheelchairs and people with limited mobility.
Disability accommodations for programs will be provided with advanced notice. Please call 530-752-4880 or email your request to email@example.com at least two weeks in advance.
(All photos: ©2016 ImagesByRJM)