Wildflowering L.A. History
The wildflowers are back blooming in the area known as Crescent Farm at the Arboretum. The mix of California wildflowers was planted there and first bloomed a year ago as part of the Wildflowering LA initiative in Los Angeles County (see below). Since then the flowers have come back on their own. The Crescent Farm is now becoming a water conservation demonstration project.
Here’s the history about Wildflowering LA:
“On October 22, 2013, one acre of lawn at the Los Angeles Arboretum was just removed today,” artist Fritz Haeg wrote on his website, “in preparation for a long term project I am in the early stages of planning, but initially as the flagship of 50 sites across Los Angeles County for Wildflowering L.A.”
Wildflowering L.A. is a native wildflower seed planting initiative designed to bring wild, seasonal and beautiful native landscapes to different sites in the county. At the Arboretum, the acre cleared of turf will be transformed into the Crescent Garden, an experimental landscape uniting California natives with sustainable gardening methods such as hügelkultur.
Haeg, internationally known for his edible landscapes from Salina, Kansas to Budapest, Hungary and for his book Edible Estates: Attack on the Front Lawn, wants to help return Los Angeles to its natural beauty and to begin a rethinking about urban landscapes away from clipped evergreen shrubs and manicured lawns.
“Wildflowering L.A. is an evolution of my work toward looking at more wild and natural landscapes and my interest in natural spaces as communal spaces to be shared, “he explained during a December visit to the Arboretum. The Crescent, for example, includes earth mounds, swales, log seating circle for conversations and walking paths.
“In Los Angeles, people don’t think we have seasons,” he noted. The artist, however, sees the seasons of Los Angeles in the story of the wildflowers as he has written, “Long-anticipated early winter rains germinate seeds that have been lying in wait, buried in dry soils from the low coasts to the high deserts, from the valley flats to the mountain slopes. Gradual growth with cool temperatures and low sun through winter months give way to an early spring explosion of bright green and rainbow color.
“The story of the seasons is told by the timing and extent of the bloom in direct proportion to the rainfall, temperatures, and climate. The plants turn a crisp golden brown as the dry summer months return, and the flowers prepare to broadcast their seeds for next year’s story.”
Witness this seasonal transformation at the Crescent. Join our community effort as we plant and care for the wildflowers and watch them bloom into the spring. When you visit the Crescent and share photos, postings, and comments on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, be sure to use the hashtags #wildfloweringla and #site22 so others can see the flowers’ progress!