Meadowlands, a private residential garden in San Jose, has been cultivated for over 20 years, starting from a lifeless patch of subsoil, stripped bare during the house construction in 1996. Initially it was planted as a mix of native and exotic drought-tolerant plants. From about the year 2000 onwards, only native plants were added. Currently, the garden is at least 95% California native, and boasts a collection of over 300 species and cultivars of California natives.
The main feature of the garden is a large collection of California lilacs (ceanothus), with over 60 different species and cultivars, most of them having grown to mature size. Ceanothus seedlings have volunteered in the garden in recent years; most of them are unique hybrids and about 50 of these have reached flowering stage.
The wide variety of native plans and large brush piles attract numerous wildlife. Visitors include jackrabbits, skunks, lizards, frogs, toads, snakes and many birds and insects. Several years ago, a covey of California quail made its home in the thickets of big saltbush (Atriplex lentiformis) and other low-growing shrubs. The garden is frequently on the Going Native Garden Tour (gngt.org/Meadowlands_GNGT).
Krzysztof Kozminski, aka KK, is a software engineer by profession (Ph.D. in electrical engineering, 1985). His hobbies are collecting and photographing plants and growing clay-tolerant native California species in his garden in San Jose. He is an active member and co-founder of the Going Native Garden Tour Steering Committee and created and maintains the Tour’s website. Krzys was the recipient of our Chapter’s 2020 Outstanding Volunteer Award.
How to attend: Most of our lectures take place Wednesday evening at 7:30pm. Our talks are live- streamed simultaneously to Zoom and YouTube. To view talks, watch our YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/c/CNPSSantaClaraValley (no registration needed) or join on Zoom by registering at the Zoom link provided in each lecture’s description. Recordings of past talks can also be viewed on our YouTube channel.