Short Summary

Garber Park is a 13-acre wildland park owned by the City of Oakland located behind the Claremont Hotel in Claremont Canyon. Garber Park is home to significant stands of big-leaf maple, California buckeyes and regenerating coast live oak woodland and forest. The Garber Park Stewards vision is to safeguard the native wildland resources of Garber Park while reducing the risk of wildfire and improving the trail system.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Spring Photo Tour

Take a slideshow tour of Garber Park to experience the beauty of the park in Spring. It’s now mid-May and the rains have abated and it’s beginning to feel like Summer. The only order and structure to the pictures is that we tried to present them from early Spring when the buds on the Big Leaf Maples and California Buckeyes were just beginning to emerge to late Spring where Garber and all its greenery is on full display.

We hope the pictures will entice you into Garber Park before the green grass begins to change to brown and the Spring flowers go to seed.

The Garber Park Stewards

Friday, May 13, 2011

May Flower - Cow Parsnip

The so-called "Common" Cowparsnip (Heracleum maximum)--anything but
common--is Garber Park's Flower of the Month for May.  Anyone who
walks in the Park has come upon this energetic late spring perennial
herb with mild astonishment because of its unique stature.  It comes to mind that this plant might have been a giraffe in a previous life.

Native to California, documented in almost every county, occurring in
many other locations across the United States, when Common Cowparsnip
is racing to bloom--in Garber, late April and May--it steals the show
from any other botanic rivals. Deep green
leaves, elongated stalk, and alluring white flowers, shortly to be
seeds, distinguish it from all others.

You will find Common Cowparsnip in many spots on the Loop Trail and on
the several spurs, especially the one that leads to Rispin Lane.  May
is the month to meet it in its best form. 

For more pictures of Cow Parsnip in Garber Park Click Here

A New Feature - Flower of the Month

With April's "Flower of the Month"--Giant Vetch--we are presenting the first of a series of feature articles that look a little closer at Garber Park and its many wildland treasures.  We will select a native flower that is prominent in a particular month, that you might easily see from the Loop Trail, and that has ecologic significance both for Garber Park and for wildland on the East Bay ridge in general. 
In creating this feature we acknowledge and build upon Kay Loughman's pioneering website, Wildlife in the North Hills,, where a beautiful catalog of carefully identified wildland species may be found.  Kay's work is both inspiration and archive for our new feature, in which we hope to present the individual or community, the species, the context, the range where we know it, and the overall health of the plant. 
In considering these several aspects, we wish to explore what we often discover in Garber Park--Garber is vitally related to the larger biologic unity of the remaining wildland in the East Bay.  Our task as Stewards is to promote the preservation of the entire expanse by understanding and protecting our local communities.

The Garber Park Stewards