CA Native Plant Pollinator Garden


Sausalito | Bay Model Visitor Center

10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Garden features:

  • California Native Plants.
  • Wildlife Habitat for Pollinators.
  • Pesticide Free.

The Marin Chapter of the California Native Plant Society will be hosts at the new Native Plant Pollinator Garden they designed and planted in front of the Bay Model Visitor Center.

The garden is over 100 feet long, and is planted with different wildlife habitats for songbirds, hummingbirds, and butterflies plus a Monarch butterfly way station. Native bees will use all of it. Each section of the garden focuses on the plants favored by that specific type of pollinator. Our purpose was to create a safe haven for these essential creatures, and we are grateful that the US Army Corps of Engineers enthusiastically embraced the idea.

The wonderful cycle of natural connections between native plants and native pollinators is on display in this garden. Plants developed rewards in the forms of nectar and pollen to entice insects to pollinate as they forage from flower to flower. Many native pollinators have co-evolved with our native wildflowers, flowering shrubs, and trees, and appear just when an essential plant comes into bloom. The local native plants in this garden provide numerous resources for native creatures: pollen and nectar, seeds and berries, food for the larval stages of butterflies, cover for nesting. Water is provided by a solar-powered birdbath and a misting fountain for the hummingbirds; small puddles for the insects form in the uneven surfaces of the stones and boulders. Only sustainable, organic gardening methods are practiced here.

The Bay Model will also be open to visitors and the photography exhibit in the lobby gallery, Beauty and the Beast: California Wildflowers and Climate Change, will be part of Marin Open Studios on the day of the tour.

Please visit the Bay Model Visitor Center website for more information.

A printable plant list is available to download that lists a few of the native plants—there are currently over 75 species in the garden. A more complete plant list will be available at the garden on the day of the tour.

Why Garden with Native Plants?

Gardening with native plants allows you to bring the beauty of California into your landscape while also receiving numerous benefits.

  • Save water: Once established, many California native plants need minimal irrigation beyond normal rainfall.
  • Lower Maintenance: Native plants do best with some attention and care, but require less water, fertilizer, pruning, less or no pesticide, and less of your time to maintain than do many common garden plants.
  • Reduce Pesticides: Native plants have developed their own defenses against many pests and diseases.
  • Invite Wildlife: Native plants, hummingbirds, butterflies, and other beneficial insects are “made for each other.” Research shows that native wildlife clearly prefers native plants.
  • Support Local Ecology: California native plants can help provide an important bridge to nearby remaining wild areas.

Further information can be be found on the California Native Plant Society webpage.