Serving Larchmont Village, Hancock Park, and the Greater Wilshire neighborhoods of Los Angeles since 2011.

April is Earth Month and National Native Plant Month

Native California Poppies blooming in our very own Larchmont median. We seed-bombed this bed with poppies and other native wildflowers with leftover seed bombs we gave out at the Larchmont Family Fair last Fall. Apparently it worked!

April is a busy month! The first Earth Day was celebrated in 1970 with twenty million Americans demonstrating for environmental protection. By the end of the year, Congress created a new federal agency, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to protect our air and waterways. Around the same time, April was designated Earth Month by volunteers with the Earth Month Network to support volunteer efforts to take action and raise awareness.

Now April is also officially designated National Native Plant Month by an act of Congress, according to First proposed in 2021, legislation was agreed to with Unanimous Consent on March 20, 2024, designating April 2024 as the first official National Native Plant Month.

The logo for National Native Plant Month features the silhouette of a grand oak (Bur Oak, Quercus macrocarpa)

In California, state Senator Steve Glazer and Assemblyman Mark Berman proposed legislation that was passed into law on May 3, 2023 ensuring that California will celebrate its native plants in April for years to come, according to the Garden Club of America.

California’s ten Garden Club of America-affiliated clubs join their affiliates across all 50 states to increase awareness of the critical role native plants play in supporting a healthy environment, biodiversity, and providing the habitat for pollinators and wildlife to survive. The California GCA affiliated clubs, with over 1,200 members, are located in Marin, Piedmont, Orinda, Hillsborough, Woodside-Atherton, Carmel-by-the-Sea, Hancock Park, Pasadena (2), and Santa Barbara.

Local gardens recommended by the GCA (and some we added) for learning more about and enjoying plantings of native plants include:

The Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County
Virginia Robinson Gardens (Beverly Hills)
Los Angeles County Arboretum (Arcadia)
Descanso Gardens (La Canada)
The Huntington Library, Art Museum and Botanical Gardens (San Marino)
The Old Mill (San Marino)
Arlington Gardens (Pasadena)
La Casita Del Arroyo (Pasadena)
California Botanic Garden (Claremont)

The Homegrown National Park community in celebrating Native Plant Month with a partnership with the National Wildlife Federation’s Garden for Wildlife to encourage Americans all over the country to plant native plants.

For nearly 50 years, the National Wildlife Federation’s Garden for Wildlife™ program has been empowering individuals to plant with a purpose: saving wildlife. All you have to do is start small with a 3-pack of your favorite native plant or you shop the Homegrown National Park website for their best-selling collections to attract hummingbirds, bees, and butterflies to your garden. You can also find lots of native plants for Los Angeles using the California Native Plant Wiki, an information resource created by the Theodore Payne Foundation to help you garden with California native plants.

At the Buzz, we are happy for any excuse to write about gardens so look for stories all month on local native gardens and gardeners.

Members of the Hancock Park Garden Club recently visited the Theodore Payne Native Plant Nursery to learn more about native plants. (L-R): Michaela Burschinger, Lisa Morrison, Judy Kirshner, Rosalie Roth, Maggie Kuhns, Holly Holyk and Ginger Lincoln.

The weather is finally warming up, even in sunny Southern California which has been unseasonably cool and wet. So it’s a great time to get outside, visit gardens, and plant native plants that support wildlife in addition to providing seasonable beauty and wonder.

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Patricia Lombard
Patricia Lombard
Patricia Lombard is the publisher of the Larchmont Buzz. Patty lives with her family in Fremont Place. She has been active in neighborhood issues since moving here in 1989. Her pictorial history, "Larchmont" for Arcadia Press is available at Chevalier's Books.

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