Media Kit – Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens
GENERAL MEDIA RELEASE
As a nonprofit botanical garden, our mission is to engage and enrich lives by displaying and conserving plants in harmony with our Northern California coastal ecosystems and to preserve public access to the coast.
The Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens (MCBG) showcases the best of the remarkable natural beauty that draws visitors to Mendocino County from around the world. It is a gift to our community and to the 85,500 visitors who stroll our pathways each year. The Gardens is a place filled with botanical wonders and simple pleasures. This special place has a long history of talented individuals who have contributed their creativity and skills to make the Gardens a memorable place. Gardens’ founders, Ernest and Betty Schoefer (founded in 1961) created a garden of spectacular flowering beauty. Early pictures show gardens full of color. Our Gardens are a living museum of plants and ecosystems. Like a museum, we must preserve and protect our specimens for purposes of education, research, conservation, historic preservation, and of course beauty. Through the years, gifted staff, board members, and volunteers have together created this remarkable place. It is a place of community for kindred spirits who enjoy nature and the botanical wonders in these 47 acres to the sea.
COLLECTIONS & HIGHLIGHTS
Rhododendrons: California’s North Coast is one of the few places on earth in which every type of rhododendron thrives. As of 2018, the MCBG collection includes over 124 species of rhododendrons and 315 taxa. More than 1,000 rhododendrons can be seen blooming throughout the Gardens during peak bloom in April and May. Each year, the Noyo Chapter of the American Rhododendron Society partners with the Gardens to host California's largest Rhododendron Show.
Dahlias: The Dahlia Garden is one of the most favored locations at Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens. The Gardens' collection of dahlias consists of more than 400 individual plants representing 150 varieties. The riotous blooms of mid- to late-summer provide an exquisite palette for artists and a glorious backdrop for weddings.
Heaths and Heathers: In 1982, the first trial plantings of heather cultivars were added to our garden. In 2010, the American Public Gardens Association recognized the Heath and Heather Collection at Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens as a Collection of National Significance. It includes 143 species of naturally occurring hybrids and cultivars of Calluna, Daboecia, and Erica.
Camellias: MCBG's collection includes approximately 11 cultivars, interspecific hybrids, and numerous species. In fact, Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens has the largest species collection on the West Coast! Our collection is a part of the American Camellia Society's American Camellia Trial Gardens.
Native Upland and Riparian Areas:– More than half of the Gardens 47 acres is managed to protect native ecosystems. These areas consist of closed-cone pine forests, fern canyons, and coastal bluffs overlooking the Pacific Ocean.
SOCIAL MEDIA PROFILES
NOTABLE MEDIA COVERAGE
The American Gardener: RAP Gardens in Focus: Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens, Viveka Neveln
NBC Bay Area News "Worth the Trip": Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens to Gorgeously Glimmer, Alysia Gray Painter
Pacific Horticulture Society: Giant Staghorn Fern Finds New Home at Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens, Roxanne Perkins
Via Magazine: Best Pet Destinations
San Francisco Chronicle: The 10 best things to do in Mendocino County, Robert Earle Howells
History: Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens was founded in 1961 by Ernest and Betty Schoefer. The Grand Opening of the Gardens was in 1966. By 1992, the Gardens' property had been purchased with grants from the California Coastal Conservancy and transferred to the Mendocino Coast Recreation and Park District (MCRPD). The property and the botanical gardens have since been under the care of Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens Preservation Corporation, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) membership organization.
Setting: Located on 47 acres running from California Highway 1 to the Pacific Ocean, this magnificent site includes manicured gardens, canyons, coastal bluffs, wetlands, and a closed-cone pine forest. Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens is one of only a few public gardens with direct ocean frontage. Our mild maritime climate allows us to grow a wide range of tender species that cannot survive the cold or heat of more northern, southern, or inland locations. MCBG is located approximately 4 hours north of the San Francisco Bay Area and 3.5 to 4 hours northwest of the Sacramento region. Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens is located on the west side of State Highway One at 18220 North Highway 1 near Fort Bragg, California.
Governance: Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens is governed by an eleven-member Board of Directors that is elected annually by its members.
Staff: The Gardens has 10 full-time employees, 18 part-time or seasonal employees, a 9-member board, and 150 active volunteers.
Botanical Significance: The proximity of the Pacific Ocean provides a temperate climate where frosts rarely occur. Combined with a lack of summer heat, this produces a unique climate, enabling the Gardens to grow a wide variety of tender species from around the world. The Gardens also contain several native plant communities and various rare species, including the Mendocino Paintbrush, Castilleja mendocinensis. We are an American Conifer Society Reference Garden, and our Heath & Heather Garden is an American Public Gardens Association Collection of National Significance.
Regional Significance: Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens is the most visited cultural institution on the North Coast. With more than 85,500 visitors per year, the Gardens has a significant and positive economic impact on the region.
Cultural Historical Significance: The Gardens contain a Native American shell mound, a pioneer graveyard dating to the turn of the 20th century, and a historic farmhouse associated with early agricultural use of the coastal bluffs.
2019 Major Events
Annual Rhododendron Show Saturday & Sunday, May 4 and 5 2019—California’s largest Rhododendron show, co-sponsored with the Noyo Chapter of the American Rhododendron Society, features more than 800 entries.
Retro Sunday Sunday, April 22, 2018—A day of giving back to the community that has supported us for more than 58 years!
Art in the Gardens Saturday, August 3, 2019 — A day of incredible art, delicious food, wine and beer, music, and much more.
Festival of Lights Gala Saturday, November 23, 2019 — An evening of music, drink, flavorful fare, and a one-of-a-kind preview of the lights.
Festival of Lights November 29–December 22, 2019 (Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays) — Celebrate the season as thousands of lights sparkle throughout the Gardens.
Press inquiry contact:
707 964-4352 ext. 22
Requests for press passes:
Requests must be submitted a minimum of 72 hours in advance of your visit. A limited number of media passes are available for the Gardens' major events. Written or emailed requests must include credentials, complete contact information, and a proposal for your piece, including target audience and how the piece will be disseminated (online, social media, print, etc.). We ask that you provide follow-up by emailing links or sending a print copy.
Please email our Marketing Manager for high-resolution images and additional information about the Gardens.