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.

Monday, January 30, 2012


Erosion control at the former Himalayan Blackberry
Bashing site.  
The past few months have been especially good for Garber Park Restoration efforts:  In December we had a fantastic showing of volunteers to help plant over 200 seedlings in the ground at the Evergreen Lane entrance Hillside.  2012 has begun with many new improvements:  replacement of crumbling steps leading to Fireplace Plaza, and with the recent rains volunteers were able to walk along the Loop Trail and easily pull French broom, vinca, poison hemlock, and other invasive weeds.  We chopped down the eucalyptus re-sprouts near the Loop Trail Junction to Rispin Ln. where a small log has been artfully placed as a resting spot.  We even cleaned up the trash and debris along Claremont Ave.

But, the most notable achievement of the New Year is the completion of the Measure DD Project along the riparian corridor of Harwood Creek.  In 2002 Oakland voters passed Measure DD, a $198.25 million bond measure for better parks and cleaner water. Funded projects include parks, trails, bridges, a recreation center, historic building renovations, land acquisition, and creek restoration.   Garber Park was on the list for funding along Harwood Creek.

The successful completion of this project was a tribute to the collaboration among many groups - Rebecca Tuden, City of Oakland Watershed Specialist, Research and Design Group who designed the project, The Garber Park Stewards, Golden Hour Restoration and other community members who spent countless hours working to achieve a successful project.  And special thanks to Four Dimensions Landscape, who skillfully implemented the project.  

Rebecca Tuden's summary of the work:  The ground was too dry for transplanting many of the species and areas we had discussed. We did the erosion control on the banks, and transplanted riparian species into the toe of the creek (the wet areas in the toe were the only areas we planted). We also replaced the bridge. Finally, we removed non natives near the downstream head cut areas to help the new transplants have light to grow. 

Michael Thilgen's compliments to Garber's volunteersthank you, Garber Park neighbors, for all the conservation work you have done in the park over the years. It's a gem of wildland, and we're honored to have been invited to work there.

Our challenge ahead is to maintain and continue the restoration of this beautiful riparian corridor.  The Garber Park Stewards are excited to lead in these efforts.  We are working with the City of Oakland and Golden Hour Restoration Institute in creating a multi-year Citizen Science Project to monitor and further enhance the native habitat. We will be watching the plants, documenting their growth, and weeding out the invasives to ensure that the new plantings flourish.  Please join us on one of our workdays - the 1st Tuesday and the 3rd Saturday of the month.  Contact Shelagh, to find out how you can help.  We can't do it without you!