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California Native Plant Society

The California Native Plant Society (CNPS) was formed in 1965 in the East Bay region. Today it is a statewide organization with thirty-three chapters. The East Bay Chapter covers Alameda and Contra Costa Counties. The state organization and the local chapters work together to increase understanding of California's native flora and to preserve this rich resource for future generations.

Donations in support of the activities of the East Bay Chapter of the California Native Plant Society in pursuit of its mission are much appreciated.

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Calendar of Chapter Events

Field Trips

Field Trips Saturday, April 4, 1 pm-about 3 pm, Warm Springs vernal pools (San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge)Come see the wildflower rings around some of the last intact vernal pools in the East Bay! Visitors will enjoy learning about the unique features of vernal pool vegetation and surrounding grassland. We will get to see the endangered plant species in this habitat, particularly the…


Aleta George Poet Ina Coolbrith’s Love of California WildflowersSpeaker: Aleta GeorgeWednesday, April 22, 7:30 pmLocation: Garden Room, Orinda Public Library (directions below) The California poppy was still ten years away from being named California’s official state flower when poet Ina Coolbrith wrote “Copa de Oro” in 1893 and described the flower as being "brimmed with the golden vintage of…


Restoration Wednesday, April 1, 7pm, SPAWNERS talk at El Sobrante Library on California biodiversity and geology (not a weeding event, but valuable background for restoration volunteers). Saturday, April 4, 9 am-1 pm, Genista rip at Redwood Parkand again on Sunday, April 12, 9:30 am-1:30 pmMeet at the Canyon Meadow picnic area/parking lot, where we will join park staff, get tools and go to pull…

Native Here Nursery

Your resource for plants that grow naturally in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties.

Native Here Nursery is on Facebook.

Conservation Blog
January 22nd
On January 21st, EBCNPS submitted a letter to FEMA in response to the recently released Final Environmental Impact Statement for their East Bay Hills Fuels Management Plan. EBCNPS’s concerns are focused on changes FEMA has made to the Final EIS R…
January 2nd
The 2015 CNPS Conservation Conference is coming up in a few weeks. Join over 1,000 conservation and native plant enthusiasts in San Jose! Attendees include scientists, conservationists, CNPS chapters, university professors and students, policymakers, prof…
November 21st
On November 14th, EBCNPS submitted comments to the East Bay Regional Park District regarding their Notice of Preparation for a Supplemental Environmental Impact Report for their Albany Beach Restoration and Public Access Project. Our comments focused on t…

Click here for the March 2015 issue of the East Bay Chapter newsletter, the Bay Leaf, in html format.

Conservation Analyst Fund

Please support our Conservation Analyst by making a generous donation!  Click on the  Paypal button above or mail a check made out to “CNPS” to: East Bay Chapter CNPS,  PO Box 5597, Elmwood Station, Berkeley CA 94705.

Mack Casterman, East Bay Chapter Conservation Analyst

Conservation Analyst Appeal Underway!  Tenth Anniversary!

Below are ten plus actions by our Conservation Analyst, Mack Casterman, to protect our local native plants—just a sample of what he has done for us so far this last year.

1.  Organizes and runs meetings of the East Bay Chapter’s Conservation Committee
2.  Edits the East Bay Chapter’s Conservation Blog
3.  Represents EBCNPS at public meetings and various committees

Many letters written:
4.  to oppose the Creekside Cemetery proposal, sited within our Tassajara Botanical Priority Protection Area, that would deplete scarce water resources, fragment rare wildlife habitat and destroy rare plants  
5.  to keep Tesla Park in the East Bay Regional Park District's Master Plan, and to alert the City of Livermore, the Livermore Area Recreation and Park District, and the Alameda County Board of Supervisors about State Park's plans to develop OHV recreation on Tesla Park (Corral Hollow Botanical Priority Protection Area).
6.  to City of Oakland regarding policy recommendations and best practices for fuels management in the Oakland Hills
7.  to Dublin City Council and active petitioning for Dublin Open Space Initiative (Dublin Urban Limit Line),resulting in the initiative being unanimously adopted by Dublin City Council
8. to regulatory agencies concerning Oakland Zoo’s proposed mitigations at Knowland Park
9.  to planners of the Richmond Bay Campus opposing plans to destroy the rare Coastal Prairie
10.  concerning FEMA Fuels Management to East Bay Regional Park District  
11. to Pt Molate Community Advisory Board and Richmond City Council,  attended South Richmond Plan Study Session
12.  Attended forum on revitalizing Contra Costa’s Northern Waterfront in Antioch—i.e.  development along 50 miles of northern shoreline
13.  Attended Leona Creek Cleanup Scoping Meeting and commented on project's environmental review.

Guidebook to the Botanical Priority Protection Areas of the East Bay is now available online.  Click here to access this marvelous resource, which includes a beautiful interactive map.

CNPS Educational Grants Program

The Educational Grants Committee administers the Educational Grants Program. Six types of grants are available. Five of them are endowed funds. The Committee determines which type of grant is appropriate for each proposal funded. All grant proposals must be postmarked by September 30th each year.  Read more


The video below explains how to use Meetup.com to find out about and participate in the actiivities of the East Bay Chapter of the California Native Plant Society.

Save Knowland Park


A bird’s eye view of the Oakland Zoo’s proposed expansion site at Knowland Park – note the rare maritime chaparral in the right side of the picture. Photo copyright, Steve Whittaker

Your help is needed to save Oakland’s largest city park – Knowland Park – from an unnecessary and destructive zoo expansion project! Despite pleas by a wide range of conservation groups to modify their project, Oakland Zoo executives have pushed forward with plans to bulldoze and build on rare wildlife and plant habitat, putting in danger threatened species like the Alameda Whipsnake, and the wide variety of wildlife that call Knowland Park home. Knowland Park is a critical piece of EBCNPS’s “Foothills of South Oakland” Botanical Priority Protection Area due to its acres of remnant native grasslands as well as a stand of rare maritime chaparral. Both habitats will be heavily impacted by the Zoo’s proposed development plan.To follow along with our work to save Knowland Park, please “like” us on Facebook and share this info with your firends and neighbors. You can also visit the Knowland Park Coalition website at saveknowland.org for up to date reporting on the ongoing efforts to gain permanent protection for this wonderful park. Knowland Park has been referred to as Oakland’s best kept secret, but we are hopeful that with your help it won’t stay a secret much longer.

Rescue Tesla Park's natural treasures



Buttercups (Ranunculus californicus) in Tesla Park.  Photo by Mack Casterman.

Friends of Tesla Park

Visit the Friends of Tesla Park web site, to learn more about the Friends' efforts to prevent  destruction of 3,400 acres of eastern Alameda County native habitat, and to get involved. 

As a Friend, EBCNPS supports establishing Tesla Park as a non-motorized low impact historic  and natural resource park and preserve. Read more

Click here for slideshows of photos of the October 2014 Plant Fair.

The flower in the banner at top is that of Grindelia hirsutula. Photo by Janice Bray




For twenty years amateurs and professionals concerned with the East Bay flora have found Barbara Ertter’s Annotated Checklist of the East Bay Flora an indispensable resource. Now Dr. Ertter and restoration ecologist, botanist and photographer Lech Naumovich have produced a second edition incorporating a wealth of new information. The book is available at Native Here Nursery and at the East Bay Chapter membership programs.  It may be ordered from Delia Taylor, deliataylor@me.com.  You may also order the book online by clicking on the Paypal button labeled "Buy Now" and following the instructions.




The East Bay Chapter of CNPS wants to keep track of rare and endemic native plants and plant communities in the East Bay. Within our catalogue of native plant species there is an abundance of rarity: from Mount Diablo endemics to Pleistocene relicts; narrowly distributed taxa to peripheral populations; and species that have suffered extirpations from changes in vegetation composition resulting from the introduction of non-native plant species or directly from human development. Based on the CNPS Inventory of Rare, Threatened, and Endangered Plants of California, a total of 127 of these plant species are currently known from our Chapter area. These species are separated into five categories of rarity:

Read more about the EBCNPS Rare Plant Program referred to in the poster above.

The flower in the banner at top is that of Grindelia hirsutula. Photo by Janice Bray

Photographs of native plants and related activity

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