City Hall King Plaza Demonstration Garden
Planted in fall 2013, this garden demonstrates environmentally-sound landscaping using sustainable practices – a holistic approach that works in harmony with the San Francisco Bay watershed. Incorporating these practices into our gardens and landscapes helps us meet many of our community goals and regulatory requirements.
Read media coverage of the ribbon cutting event to unveil the new garden.
See the garden transform from start to finish with the help of many in the community in our picture slideshow.
Plants chosen for this garden are native to California, adapted to our soil and climate conditions.
The plants are all adapted to summer dry climates – most survive without additional water once established. Drip irrigation is used to provide supplemental irrigation water as needed.
The garden plants and materials were sourced locally, reducing energy required for transportation. No gas powered tools will be used for garden maintenance.
Landscaping for Less to the Landfill
Plants were selected to fit their growing space without mowing or excessive pruning, thus reducing waste. The garden sign base was salvaged from a redwood tree.
Protecting Water & Air Quality
No pesticides or synthetic fertilizers are used in the garden. This keeps any rainwater runoff clean as it drains to creeks and the Bay. Plants improve air quality by absorbing carbon dioxide (CO2), cooling the air and minimizing a “heat island” effect. The large planter serves as a green roof on the City Hall plaza and assists in filtering out pollution from air particulates as they percolate through the soil.
Nurturing the Soil
The garden’s soil was amended with compost before planting. The mulch layer protects it from compaction, controls weeds, helps retain moisture and feeds the soil.
Creating Wildlife Habitat
Local native plants provide food and shelter to native beneficial insects and birds.
The collaborative partnership to create this garden has brought together multiple City departments, regional public agencies, nonprofits, private businesses and community volunteers, building understanding of how the various goals and needs of each interlock and support the others.
- While in Palo Alto, visit the Lucie Stern Demonstration Garden for another example of a sustainable, Bay-Friendly landscape.
- View other demonstration gardens in Santa Clara County.
- Interested in learning how to easily transform your garden? Join us for one of Palo Alto’s free workshops offered throughout the year.
- Add your name to our email list to get updates on workshops and other programs!
- Learn about our Zero Waste programs and resources.
- Stormwater Runoff Reduction rebates
Last Updated: December 17, 2013