While the majority of Golden Gate Park is decorated with manicured lawns, blooming flowerbeds, and additional ornamental details, every once in a while you’ll encounter historic reminders of San Francisco’s native flora. The park is home to a section of Oak Woodlands situated in the northeast corner, where some of the oldest coast live oak trees in the city reside. As you explore the terrain, travel the dirt and asphalt paths throughout the woodlands to continue exploring an all-encompassing trail and road network throughout the park.
Things to Do
With an oak tree, you don’t get a dramatic display of colorful blossoms like some of the other trees in the park. But, you do encounter a scattering of acorns – the fruit of the oak tree, which is quite popular with some of the fauna in the area. Acorns also make interesting educational tools for parents taking the kids to the park for a nature outing.
You can also get involved with preserving what has been called the remnants of the only original “forested” area within San Francisco. Volunteers have created a project that helps maintain the oaks. Regular work parties take place on the second Saturday of each month from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., where volunteers may spend their afternoon clearing the weeds (English ivy, cape ivy, blackberry, and ehrharta grass) that threaten the environment of the oaks. Routine meetings for the group are held at the Conservatory of Flowers.
The volunteer organization is also responsible for building and maintaining nature trails so that you can safely enjoy the oaks and their surroundings.
For more information on volunteering your time for the Oak Woodlands, visit http://sfnaturalareas.org/sites/4
The Oak Woodlands natural space is found on Stanyan Street and Fulton Street. It runs from a valley along Fulton Street and up a hillside towards Conservatory Drive West.