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Going Native in LA: An Interview

Articles: Going Native in LA: An Interview

The afternoon sun illuminates a Craftsman-style gate set within the perimeter stucco wall enclosing El Chaparro. Beyond the shade of a native oak (Quercus berberidifolia), California poppies (Eschscholzia californica) and Matilija poppies (Romneya coulteri) flower. Photographs by David Rago

On the itinerary for a tour of Los Angeles gardens accessible under the Garden Conservancy’s Open Days program, we noted a garden called “El Chaparro,” described as a garden of California native plants. Intrigued, we headed to the area just south of Hollywood, a neighborhood of beautiful Craftsman-era homes, well tended lawns, and gardens filled with colorful exotic plants. It seemed an odd neighborhood for a native plant garden, but there it was, tucked away behind a tall wall on a corner lot—and it was stunning. It was a surprisingly popular garden that day, and most of the visitors tended to linger in the meadow or sit in one of the rustic benches under the native oaks. In hopes of seeing all ten of the private gardens open to the public that day, we took only a few minutes to chat with Scott Goldstein about his garden...

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