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What's in the Garden

The Perennial Garden

perennial garden
The Perennial Garden is a showcase for hardy, drought-tolerant plants that grow well in Fresno area gardens with average care. They are able to thrive in spite of the Valley's challenging growing conditions: Full sun, summer heat and aridity, winter frost and fog, alkaline soil, and a restricted landscape watering schedule. Featured varieties are chosen for their attractive flowers and foliage, which provide color and textural interest throughout the growing season.

August in the perennial garden video.

All-America Selection Display Garden

All-American Selection Display Garden sign
The All-America Selection Display Garden is one of nearly 200 gardens across the country, developed to provide gardeners and non-gardeners alike the opportunity to view and judge for themselves the merits of the award winning vegetables and flowers. Flowers are scored on color, disease resistance, insect and weather stress, prolonged flowering, and attractiveness of blossoms, uniformity, uniqueness, and fragrance. Vegetables are evaluated for flavor, yield, appearance, texture, disease resistance, production and space efficiency, nutrition, and novelty.

All-America Selection website

UC Davis Arboretum All Stars

Throughout the garden you can find plants marked with the Arboretum All Stars logo on their tag. 

The Arboretum All-Stars have been selected for these eco-friendly traits: Attractive for most of the year
Thrive in Central Valley conditions
Tested in UC Davis Arboretum test plots throughout the state

And many also have one or more of the following features: Low maintenance
Drought tolerance
Attract beneficial wildlife

UC Davis Arboretum All-Stars website

The Sun/ Shade Garden

This inviting garden, situated under a large coastal redwood, is home to plants that thrive in full shade (at the base of the tree), as well as plants that do well in both sun and shade (those around the perimeter of the tree's canopy). The plantings demonstrate how "micro-climates" and a large shade tree can make a difference in the landscape. The emphasis in this garden is on shades and textures of foliage with a few touches of color from flowering plants. A dry streambed and garden rooms accent the plantings.

The Orchard and Vines, Berries

Amid the Fruit, Grapes, and Berries . . .

As you stroll through the orchard, vineyard, and berry patch, you will find many ideas to add interest and beauty to any garden or small orchard. The grape demonstration area displays trellising techniques, which are easily adapted to the home garden or orchard.

grape vines gos
The berries, including many thornless varieties, also show the importance of trellising and training. The pride and joy of the orchard is the attractive espalier demonstration area (surrounding the office) where apple trees are trained using four fascinating espalier designs. The orchard trees are being gradually replanted as an educational tool to demonstrate correct cultural practices of training and pruning.

The Vegetable Garden

The experimental vegetable garden presents many exciting concepts for growing food crops in a beautiful and functional fashion. In addition to the vast array of vegetables grown year-round, demonstrations of different methods of irrigation, protective coverings, trellising, and integrated pest management can be seen. Browse the experimental beds, experience square- foot gardening, and discover methods to encourage beneficial insects and add beauty to your garden.

Small Spaces Garden

The Small Space Garden demonstration is divided into three main areas:  

Cottage Garden - a mixture of perennials and annuals designed to provide a profusion of color throughout the year.

Low Maintenance Garden - chosen for foliage color and texture with a few seasonal annuals that require minimal maintenance.

dallies in small spaces garden

Patio Pot Garden.- a grouping that demonstrates how potted grasses, succulents and cactus, color (primarily annuals) and a small flowering tree can be successfully grown in a small space. Drip irrigation is used in both the Low Maintenance & Patio Pot gardens.

succulent garden gos

No Barriers Garden

The No Barriers Garden demonstrates how people who have lost some degree of physical ability may still enjoy gardening. Excite your senses in the newly completed Sensory Garden area. Original construction for this garden was provided by a grant from U.C. Office of Affirmative Action and the garden has been featured in the Los Angeles Times.

no barriers garden

Childrens Garden

The Children's Garden was designed for two purposes. First, it is a special place where children can explore, touch, play, and learn about gardening. Second, it is a space for demonstrating children's gardening ideas to teachers and parents. A fairy garden, animal safari bed, Herbie the dinosaur topiary, a vine-covered maze, Peter Rabbit’s garden shaped as a tangram, hop scotch, a bean tepee, a secret garden, a ‘worm box’ and much more, can be found in this fun spot in the garden. Citrus, loropetalum, hollyhocks, and vines serve to enclose the garden in a special place that beckons children.

child in children's garden

The Herb Garden

herb garden gos
The Herb Garden lies in the south western portion of the Garden of the Sun. The semi-circle design around the beautiful coastal redwood represents the rays of the sun. Each ray contains a theme garden. A delightful section is the landscaped garden spoke, which includes plants that do well in a rock garden setting. Other theme gardens include a butterfly garden, kitchen garden, tea garden, lemon scented garden, fragrant garden, and dry flower or everlasting garden. There is visual and sensory appeal here, and many plants are drought tolerant and perfect for our valley climate.