San Francisco Botanical Garden

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San Francisco Botanical Garden
Strybing Arboretum
San Francisco Botanical Garden Great Lawn 2.jpg
San Francisco Botanical Garden
San Francisco Botanical Garden is located in San Francisco County
San Francisco Botanical Garden
Type Municipal
Location Golden Gate Park[1]
Coordinates 37°46′06″N 122°28′12″W / 37.7682633°N 122.4699716°W / 37.7682633; -122.4699716Coordinates: 37°46′06″N 122°28′12″W / 37.7682633°N 122.4699716°W / 37.7682633; -122.4699716[2]
Area 55 acres (22 ha)[1]
Opened 1940 (1940)[1]
Operated by San Francisco Recreation & Parks Department
Status Open year round
McBean Wildfowl Pond and Primitive Plant Garden at SF Botanical Garden
Pond at Dwarf Conifer collection of SF Botanical Garden
Redwood trail
Nodding Pincushion Protea Flower Bud
Stones from the Spanish monastery Santa Maria de Ovila can be found in the library reading patio, the Rhododendron pavilion, and the Garden of Fragrance.
Verbascum at San Francisco Botanical Garden
Meadow at San Francisco Botanical Garden
Cassia in San Francisco Botanical Garden
Aloe at San Francisco Botanical Garden
Pagoda at San Francisco Botanical Garden

The San Francisco Botanical Garden (formerly Strybing Arboretum) is located in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. Its 55 acres (22.3 ha) include over 50,000 individual plants, representing over 8,000 taxa from around the world, with particular focus on Magnolia species, high elevation palms, and cloud forest species from Central America, South America and Southeast Asia.[3]

San Francisco's County Fair Building is located at the entrance to the garden.


Plans for the garden were originally laid out in the 1880s by park supervisor John McLaren, but funding was insufficient to begin construction until Helene Strybing left a major bequest in 1927.[4] Planting was begun in 1937 with WPA funds supplemented by local donations, and the arboretum officially opened in May 1940.[5] As a part of Golden Gate Park, it is officially managed by the city of San Francisco, but the San Francisco Botanical Garden Society plays an important role in providing educational programs, managing volunteers, and curatorial staff. Formed in 1955, the San Francisco Botanical Garden Society (formerly the Strybing Arboretum Society) operates the Helen Crocker Russell Library of Horticulture, a bookstore, and monthly plant sales, and offers a wide range of community education programs for children and adults. The Society also raises money for new projects and Garden renovations. Using green building practices, a new Center for Sustainable Gardening is planned to replace the existing nursery. Other planned renovations include a Southeast Asian Cloud Forest and newly paved pathways.

The Garden continues to actively acquire plants; in 2009 it received 865 accessions totaling over 4,100 individual plants.[citation needed]

Having changed its name from Strybing Arboretum to match that of the San Francisco Botanical Garden Society, the name was changed to San Francisco Botanical Garden Society at Strybing Arboretum and recent signage has dropped the reference to Helene Strybing.

Plant collections[edit]

The gardens are organized into several specialized collections:

  • Mediterranean
    • California Native
    • John Muir Nature Trail
    • Redwood Grove
    • Chile
    • Cape Province (South Africa)
    • Australia
    • Mediterranean Basin Region
  • Mild-temperate climate
    • New Zealand
    • Moon-viewing Garden - a Japanese design
    • Takamine Garden - Asian plants
    • Temperate Asia Garden
  • Montane tropic
  • Specialty collections
    • Ancient Plant Garden
    • Succulent garden
    • Dwarf Conifer garden
    • Exhibition Garden
    • Garden of Fragrance
    • Zellerbach Garden of Perennials
    • Dry Mexico
    • Rhododendron Garden
    • Magnolias & Camellias (found in many collections)

The mild Mediterranean climate is ideal for plants from surprisingly many parts of the world; the arboretum does not include greenhouses for species requiring other climate types.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "San Francisco Botanical Garden". San Francisco Recreation & Parks Department. Retrieved 2016-04-12. 
  2. ^ "Strybing Arboretum". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. Retrieved 2016-04-13. 
  3. ^ "About San Francisco Botanical Garden". San Francisco Botanical Garden at Strybing Arboretum. San Francisco Botanical Garden. June 2008. Retrieved 11 February 2015. 
  4. ^ Sullivan, Michael J. (2004). The Trees of San Francisco, p. 56. Pomegranate Communications, Inc.
  5. ^ "Strybing Arboretum in Golden Gate Park". Golden Gate Park. Golden Gate Retrieved 11 February 2015. 

External links[edit]