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.

Thursday, October 20, 2022

June 2022 Volunteer Days


Spring Surprises!

As spring starts to turn into summer in the park, we start to see some of our plants go to seed and spread the next generation! The official start of summer this year is June 21st, so these were our last spring workdays of the year, which is bittersweet, as spring holds so much plant and people activity in the park! 

These last workdays were busy, from pulling invasive weeds, such as Ehrharta in Horsetail Meadow and clearing ivy in Fern Glade. Though we will be sad to see spring fade, we are excited to bring on the quieter, but just as important summer months. Before we move on to the next season, we'd like to share with you a nice returning surprise that brought delight to our volunteers during our workdays (Curious to know what it is? Find out below).
June 4th
We started our day off in the cool open area that is Horsetail Meadow. Here we worked to tackle the various weeds found in this wetland area. These included Ehrharta grass, Cape Ivy, Poison Hemlock, thistles, mustards, Himalayan Blackberry, and a few others. Weeds of all types and all difficulty levels, which is great as we have a varied volunteer base that includes some as young as four years old!
June 4th- Ruby and Sam (one of our youngest volunteers) share a teaching moment, while his mom helps weed around some Horsetail sprouts

One of our volunteer coordinators, Ruby, shared some tips and tricks with Sam, who, with his mom, are dedicated volunteers who love Garber Park and bring a lot of energy! During our volunteer day, some of our other volunteers tackled a patch of Ehrharta grass and thistles to open up space for some of our native grasses and allow our native population of Giant Horsetails to spread its rhizomes.

June 4th- Volunteers are pulling invasive weeds in Horsetail Meadows to help the natives

After two hours of weeding in this area, we transitioned to Fern Glade for the final hour, as a cool-down activity. Fern Glade is always exciting to work in, because it gives a good opportunity to see your impact as you uncover ferns hidden under the ivy. You may remember from January of us finding a certain salamander under the ivy, and with volunteers continuing to weed this area, another special native Ensatina was spotted! This was a great continuation of the year and it was great to see them still crawling around.

June 4th- Volunteers uncovered an Ensatina, under the ferns and ivy.

June 18th:
This was an exciting day for a scavenger hunt in Fern Glade! With our wonderful group of volunteers we searched under the ivy
for native plants to uncover. The mat of ivy seems pretty dense but sometimes we find native plants, especially ferns in the most unexpected places, and we try to create a buffer from the ivy around them. This buffer serves a few different purposes; to make the area easily identifiable to revisit, to allow room for the plant to grow, and also allow an area for their spores to spread and get established.

June 18th- Volunteers are pulling ivy and non-native grasses in Fern Glade to uncover native plants.

When removing ivy we generally try to remove the pulled strands with bags to avoid leaving a pile of dead debris behind. One of our continuous focus' has been to select an established fern and create a small buffer in it's immediate area, so as to not create too big of a bare space. This technique has proven successful in Garber, as we have seen new baby ferns sprout around the uncovered ones after a few months, especially during the rainy season.

June 18th- Volunteers are pulling and bagging ivy and non-native grasses in Fern Glade to uncover native plants.

Overall, we had a few successful and satisfying spring workdays! We would like to thank all of our wonderful volunteers and the surrounding Garber Park community for helping us make this a long-term success!

Come join us on our upcoming Volunteer Days on the 1st and 3rd Saturday of the month as we continue restoring areas of Garber Park to be better suited for native species, and in doing so, creating a more fire safe park for everyone. 

If you'd like to volunteer with us visit our Volunteer Opportunities page for more information and if you'd like to join our mailing list please email Wyllie at     

If you're interested in seeing what's in bloom through the seasons at Garber Park, please take a look at our Plant Highlights Page!

Take a look at our past events

Fun Snapshots of our Restoration Efforts at Garber Park 

MLK Day of Service: Seeds of Hope

Plant Highlights at Garber Park