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Spring Into Action!

Five Ways to Enjoy the Arboretum Right Now

It’s officially spring! And if you’re looking for excuses to get outside, the expansive UC Davis Arboretum provides the perfect opportunity. Visit its100-plus-acre public garden, spanning campus, or go further and explore the Putah Creek Riparian Reserve—a 640-acre natural riparian and grassland ecosystem, with trailheads for hiking, as well as opportunities for fishing, boating, and—once the temperature rises—swimming.

Here are five special not-to-miss experiences this season:

Photos courtesy of the UC Davis Arboretum

1. Animal Science GATEway Garden

Located north of the Arboretum’s Southwest USA/Mexican collection, a pathway leads directly to a visitor’s gate lined with steel-animal silhouettes. Linger past the various shaded seating areas and into the horse viewing area, where you will often be able to spot newly born colts basking in the warm sunshine during the spring.

2. Good Life Garden

Often used as a venue for weddings and university events, this ever-changing, edible landscape is located in the courtyard of the Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science. Take a break to find inspiration in the plots of organic and sustainably grown vegetables, herbs, and flowers that build community and increase student food access.

3. California Rock Garden

This unique display of boulders and core samples gives visitors of all ages the opportunity to marvel at dozens of rock types from throughout the state of California without ever leaving Davis. Located near La Rue and the Desert Collection, grab your geology hat and get exploring!

4. Large Animal Blood Donor Facility

New naay-bors just moved in last October—among them cows, goats, llamas, and horses. These heroes give blood for the animals receiving treatment at the hospital. To visit, follow the granite pathway beyond the Ruth Storer garden. Be sure to take note of all the valley-wise blooms planted there, en route.

5. Wednesday Walks with Warren

Taking place every second Wednesday of the month between 12p-1p, join Warren Roberts, the Superintendent Emeritus of the Arboretum, to enjoy his renowned stories and insider look into the Arboretum horticulture. Tours start from the Arboretum Gazebo.


Parking on campus costs $10/per day on weekdays. Permits can be obtained from the machines in the Visitor Parking Lots. Parking is free on weekends and holidays. Free one hour parking is available on Garrod Drive across from the Gazebo.

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