curley-3-of-9

Clytia and Joe Curley’s garden – #9

Oakland

Lot size: 800 sq. ft. front garden and 1,800 sq. ft back garden, 80% native

Garden Age: Back garden was installed in stages beginning in 2006; the front garden was planted in 2008

Years on the Bringing Back the Natives Garden Tour: New this year!

Showcase Feature
In 1893 a trolley line was built to carry picnickers (including Mark Twain) across Indian Gulch (named for the nearby seasonal Native American village) to the bucolic oak-bay woodland that blanketed the rolling hills of the picturesque Trestle Glen area, where the Curleys’ garden is located. Michael Thilgen and the team from Four Dimensions Landscape Company removed a sea of ivy, periwinkle, and blackberry from the shady back garden, created rustic seating areas, and planted native oak woodland understory plants, such as coffeeberry, thimbleberry, snowberry, and currants. If you choose to walk the wood chip path up the hill at the back of the lot, wear sturdy shoes and watch your step.

Other Garden Attractions curley-4-of-9
• The sunny front garden, with its stacked bluestone steps, is home to a profusion of natives that provide color for much of the year. The long bloom time starts with the creamy pink manzanita blossoms, which yield to magenta redbud, purple irises and pink coral bells, continues with blue California lilac, and ends with the bright-red fuchsia.
• Visit Nick Mealy’s garden, a 10 minute walk up Trestle Glen.

Gardening for Wildlife curley-6-of-9
Seed heads and fruits are left for birds. Since the garden was transformed Clytia, an entomologist, enjoys seeing insects that never visited her garden before. Gossamer-winged butterflies lay eggs in the garden; aphids and leafminer fly larva decorate leaves with galls and mines. Bees adore the California lilac, buckwheat, and bee plant. The sound of water tumbling down the waterfall and splashing through the creek attracts wildlife and people alike.

Seeds for Sale
Wild Jules Crafted Seed Balls will sell a variety of wildflower and grass seeds, including lupine, meadowfoam, Chinese houses, milkweed, monkey flower, and more.

Plant and bird lists

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