BLOOM BLAST :: News from Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens

What's in bloom?

Perennial Bulbs
Magnolias  .   Heaths
Winter rhododendrons
Camellias  .  Grevilleas
Wild Mushrooms

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UPCOMING Workshops & Events
How to Photograph Mushrooms
January 26 | 10:00am to 4:00pm
Learn to capture those mycological wonders from one of the premier mushroom photographers in the nation. More details below!

Call for Artists & Vendors – Art in the Gardens 2019
Now through March 15 | 1:00pm to 5:00pm
We are now accepting applications for Art in the Gardens 2019! More details below!

Fruit Tree Pruning Workshop
February 16 | 10:00am to 12:00pm
Instructor Di Scott has 20 years of coastal orchard experience and a lifetime of horticultural knowledge to help you to optimize performance from your fruit trees, according to your own needs and the specific environment in which the trees are growing. Class cost is $15 for members and Master Gardeners; $20 for non-members (includes Gardens admission for the day). Sign up by phoning 707-964-4352 ext. 16 or stop by The Garden Store at Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens.

Vegetable Garden Volunteer Training
Every Friday in March (1, 8, 15, 22, 29) | 10:00am to 12:00pm

We are offering free volunteer training to those who would like to join our team of knowledgeable and passionate volunteers for the 2019 growing season (March-October). More details below!

Rhododendron Walks
March 30, April 6, April 20, April 27  | 1:30pm
Learn more about the Gardens' signature collection including more than 124 species of rhododendrons and 315 taxa, many of them developed by the region's prolific, enthusiastic, and generous rhododendron growers! These walks are free with regular Gardens admission (just plain free to attend if you are a member of the Gardens).

Collections Walks
First Monday of Each Month (April - October)  | 1:30am
Learn more about the Gardens' signature collection including more than 124 species of rhododendrons and 315 taxa, many of them developed by the region's prolific, enthusiastic, and generous rhododendron growers! These walks are free with regular Gardens admission2019 Walks: April 1, May 6, June 3, July 1, August 5, September 2 (Labor Day), October 7

Spring Volunteer Orientation
April 3 | 10:00am to 12:00pm
Join Volunteer Coordinator Molly Rosenthal for an orientation and learn about MCBG's history, volunteer policies and exciting opportunities. More details below!

SAVE THE DATE – BioBlitz 2019!
April 13  | 10:00am to 2:00pm
Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens has its own unique biodiversity spread over 47 acres. We invite you — our citizen scientists, local experts, and volunteers — to come together to find, identify, and document as many species of plants, animals, fungi, and other organisms as possible. More details to come, CLICK HERE for updates.
Photographing fungi
News Flash: MCBG brings nationally recognized
mushroom photographer to the Mendo Coast!

Join us this Saturday for a full-day workshop and learn the best techniques for capturing mushrooms in all their glory. We will discover tricks on composing photos, how to best utilize lighting in often dark places, and finding the perfect specimens to photograph. 

Instructor Noah Siegel’s field mycology skills are extensive — he has spent over two decades seeking, photographing, identifying, and furthering his knowledge about all aspects of macrofungi. Noah is one of the premier mushroom photographers in the nation, having won numerous awards from the North American Mycological Association photography contest. His technique and attention to detail are unrivaled, arising from a philosophy of maximizing utility for identification purposes while maintaining a high degree of aesthetic appeal. His photographs have appeared on the covers and have been featured in articles of multiple issues of FUNGI Magazine and Mushroom (the Journal of Wild Mushrooming), the primary mushroom enthusiast magazines in the United States, numerous mushroom books, as well as many club publications. He authored, along with Christian Schwarz, Mushrooms of the Redwood Coast (available now at The Garden Store), a comprehensive guide for the Northern California coast.

Class cost: $25 for MCBG members and Master Gardeners; $35 for non-members. Payment is due upon sign-up. Please note, all workshop fees are non-refundable unless the workshop has been canceled or rescheduled by the Gardens. Sign up by phoning 707-964-4352 ext. 16 or stop by The Garden Store at Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens.

What to bring: Any camera will work, a DSLR camera or compact digital camera with macro capabilities is preferred. Bring your tripod if you have one. This workshop will be both indoors and out; wear appropriate clothes for two hours of fieldwork, likely in cold and damp settings. 

What winter brings
MCBG Gardeners describe what they love about this season... 
plus a few things to look forward to on your next visit!
Although it is a bit wet and cold, winter is a great time of year to be in your garden. If you are the kind of gardener who can barely stand to be inside on a rainy day, use the time to take a walk and watch the way the water flows. Addressing drainage issues is best done in the winter when you have a clear picture of what the issues really are, and though it can be wet and mucky, it is so satisfying when you remove obstacles from your drainage ditches allowing the water to break through and flow again!

Cleaning up the dead material in and around perennials, trees, and shrubs allows the plants to come back strong. This process can also reveal little hidden gems like a Rough Skinned Newt or Pacific Green Tree Frog (pictured above) and provide nesting materials for eager birds and animals. Birds will follow you around as you rake and move the soil. They just love the bugs you are unearthing.

Here at the Gardens our Magnolia doltsopa 'Chinese Magnolia' (pictured above) and Magnolia 'Vulcan' (pictured above) are putting on a spectacular show of form, color, and scent. Winter heaths create rolling mounds of tiny flowers. Daffodils, Spanish Bluebells, and other perennial bulbs broke through the soil at the beginning of the year and are already starting to bloom. The aloes (pictured below: Aloe pluridens 'French Aloe') are shooting vibrant blooms into the air while our large prickly pear cactus forms round red buds that will burst into yellow flowers in a month or two. The Anna’s Hummingbird (pictured below in front of Camellia 'John Druecker') adds loads of character to the winter months. They are tiny birds with a large presence; defending their territory and displaying loud acrobatics in their mating dance. They nest with their young in late winter, early spring.
The best summer garden party around!

We are now accepting applications for Art in the Gardens 2019! This celebration of creative expression, gorgeous gardens, music, beer, wine, and food attracts as many as 1,500 visitors each year. Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens invites artists (open to all art mediums) to submit an application to exhibit their original work at the 27th Art in the Gardens held on Saturday, August 3 from 11AM to 5PM. Applications for this juried fine arts event will be accepted now through March 15, 2019.

Artist booths are framed by our 47 acres of beautifully landscaped gardens providing a unique and natural setting to display and sell art. While there is a non-refundable jury fee of $30, there is no booth fee. A 25% commission will be taken from all artists’ sales. The commission will directly benefit the Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens and our mission to engage and enrich lives by displaying and conserving plants in harmony with our Northern California coastal ecosystems. Don’t miss this ideal opportunity to meet new clientele! To be considered in the jury process please complete and submit the application by March 15, 2019.

Complete the 2019 Artist Application online HERE

Please help us in our call for artists by asking your creative community to apply!


If you are interested in participating in the 27th annual Art in the Gardens as a musician, winery, brewery, or food vendor please contact Jamie Campione at

Learn and grow with the Gardens 
Vegetable Garden Training-FREE! 
Every Friday in March 10am-12pm

We are offering a volunteer training to those who would like to join our team of knowledgeable and passionate volunteers for the 2019 growing season (March-October).  The commitment is four hours a week, and the schedule can be flexible once you have completed the volunteer training. To sign up for the vegetable garden volunteer training please contact Jaime at
Volunteer training schedule
March 1: Crop Rotations and Planning
March 8: Propagation
March 15: Soil Prep
March 22: Pest Control
March 29: Planting and Harvesting

Spring Volunteer OrientationFREE!
Wednesday April 3, 2019

When the sunshine begins to peak out from behind the clouds and new life emerges from the dirt, that's when things really start buzzing at the Gardens. Before you roll up your sleeves and get busy this spring, join Volunteer Coordinator Molly Rosenthal for an orientation. You will learn about MCBG's history, volunteer policies and exciting opportunities. Plus, you'll have a chance to meet some new faces!

The orientation will include an MCBG overview where you will hear from some of our friendly staff, followed by a walkabout in the gardens. If you'd like to join, please RSVP to Molly at or 707-964-4352 x10.

Become a Docent!—FREE! (a small deposit for docent manual required)

Each spring and fall, MCBG welcomes nearly 1,000 school children ranging from Kindergarten-twelfth grade and hundreds more adults in educational groups. We are always in need of docents to teach basic horticultural curriculum, information on MCBG history and collections and to share their love of the Gardens with others. Becoming a docent is a wonderful opportunity for those with a passion for education, children, or public speaking, and with a moderate familiarity with the Gardens. We will teach you everything else you need to know! If interested, please contact Molly at or 707-964-4352 x10.
News from the Nursery

The Nursery at Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens has a great selection of dahlia tubers divided from our own stunning collection! Each dahlia variety is bagged separately and marked with a color photo of the flower to help you better plan the aesthetics of your garden. We will also have some bags of assorted tubers.
We will be offering more than 40 varieties!
Flowers ranging from 2 inches to 7 inches across.
An array of forms: pompons, cactus, waterlily, “dinner plate”, and others!
The tubers will be available for purchase in bags containing 3-5 tubers (depending on size). The sale will begin next Saturday, February 2nd... come early for the best selection!
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