Join Us for a Garden Party at Ballona Discovery Park!

Through the joint efforts of LMU CURes, Friends of Ballona Wetlands, and the community of Playa Vista, Ballona Discovery Park will be on the annual Theodore Payne Garden Tour this Spring, on Saturday, April 15, 2023!

Our CURes team has been working hard to make native gardens a pathway to community engagement and a link to the LMU’s efforts in diversity, equity and inclusion. These garden efforts include underserved schools, community settings and homes. The Theodore Payne Foundation (TPF) is a leader in the growing and supplying of native plants and sponsors an annual tour of the City’s best garden examples. They also have an amazing demonstration garden on site in Sun Valley, and offer a range of horticulture and botany classes and workshops to take.

One of our funders, who created my inaugural Environmental Leadership Fellow position with CURes five years ago, is also on the tour: Susan and Dan Gottlieb of The Gottlieb Native Garden.

Both, The Gottlieb Native Garden and Ballona Discovery Park, are on Saturday, April 15, 2023, of the two-day Theodore Payne Garden Tour of 37 gardens, from 10:00 a.m. — 5:00 p.m. Hundreds of people will be coming through the Park that day, and it is a great opportunity for us to showcase all the work our partners do in the community of Playa Vista and beyond. An example and inspiration is the Grow Native! Garden Club program in the Park, run by Neysa Frechette, Manager of Science Programs for the Friends. We have had guest speakers from the Theodore Payne Foundation over the years, and are proud to partner with such an amazing organization.

This is one of the best garden shows in town where participants have the opportunity to passively walk through other people’s gardens to gain both knowledge and inspiration for their own gardens. Additionally, experts at TPF are there to answer questions and do an exceptional job helping participants navigate their inquiries with their institutional knowledge. The Annual Theodore Payne Native Plant Garden Tour is is a paid event and well worth the investment ($40-$45 for both days).

Below is the schedule for Saturday, April 15, 2023; both Susan’s and Discovery Park gardens are open that day:

Susan’s garden is in Beverly Hills and Ballona Discovery Park is in Playa Vista, and we encourage you to visit BOTH – since Susan’s garden is also one of the inspirations for Discovery Park. The Park also gives visitors an opportunity to learn about medicinal native plants through the amazing Swimmer Medicinal Native Plant Garden located within Discovery Park.

I hope to see you on April 15th in Ballona Discovery Park!

— Lisa Fimiani, Drollinger Environmental Fellow

Neysa Frechette, Katie Tilford (Assistant Director of TPF), and Lisa Fimiani